God created laws in great detail to address every situation.
God said He would eliminate transgressions of Israel and forget their sins in Isaiah 43:25-26.
25 I, even I, am he that blotteth out thy transgressions for mine own sake, and will not remember thy sins.
26 Put me in remembrance: let us plead together: declare thou, that thou mayest be justified.
He challenged them to prove themselves worthy and justified in light of their sins. God begins His challenge by talking about remembrance. Then, He says something very curious, “Put Me in remembrance....”
Does God have a bad memory?
Why does He need to be reminded if He made this plan in the first place?
God says in this passage that man is to remind Him of His promises, discuss the situation as in a court of law, and speak out in either agreement or disagreement with His word. This statement can be seen two ways. One inference is that God is almost sarcastically saying that if they were to argue their case for self-justification they would fail as they remember and examine His word. The other inference is that if man agrees with God, he will be cleansed and made right or righteous, and he will be justified.
To better understand what God is trying to say to us in the Bible, information about the translation of specific words can be gathered from a Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible. It lists the specific words used in the original text and definitions of those words. The Hebrew word translated justified in verse 26 is the Strong’s word designated OT:6663, defined here:
“justified” - Strong’s OT:6663 tsadaq (tsaw-dak’)
a primitive root; to be (causatively, make) right (in a moral or forensic sense): KJV - cleanse, clearself, (be, do) just (-ice, -ify, -ifyself), (be turn to) righteous (-ness).
The passage in Isaiah was specifically written to Jacob and the people of Israel about being right or cleansed, but the principle holds true throughout the Bible. The central theme is the same that God revealed and established with Adam in the beginning. God basically says, “Do what I recommend to you and you will be in good shape. Ignore Me at your own peril.”
God took His recommendations to a higher level when He formally established a Covenant agreement with man through Abraham, in which God guaranteed that He would fulfill His promises. In order to receive God’s forgiveness as described in Isaiah 43:25-26, we must re- member His word and discuss it with Him.
God gave an extensive list of laws (613 in total) that included the better known Ten Commandments. He gave them to man because man was very legalistic, actively looking for ways to get around His decrees. Man constantly seeks loopholes to excuse his disobedience to the intents of God and His covenant. To dissuade this rebellion, God created the laws in great detail to address virtually every conceivable situation. These laws effectively closed the loopholes and made man completely responsible for himself. The Law made man liable for the penalty for his own sin, which is death.
This resulted in a seemingly hopeless situation for man. He could not possibly observe the entire Law without error. Man still found himself in the same situation that he was in since the fall of Adam. However, now there was an added pressure. God made His requirements abundantly clear through the Law. Sin would not be tolerated by God.
Man now had accountability or personal responsibility for his actions. Later, God declared that He had a way to fix Man’s situation, even in the midst of these staggering requirements. Ezekiel 16:59-60 tells us that even though man breaks the covenant by disobeying the laws, God will continue to keep up His part to save and restore Man.
59 For thus saith the Lord God; I will even deal with thee as thou hast done, which hast despised the oath in breaking the covenant.
60 Nevertheless I will remember my covenant with thee in the days of thy youth, and I will establish unto thee an everlasting covenant.
Think about how unfair this is to God as a party to the covenant. A covenant or agreement in our world is breached if one party does not hold up his or her end of it. Failure to perform carries a variety of legal remedies that are laid out in detail when the agreement is signed. They have negative repercussions upon the one that breached the agreement. Failing to make your payments is an example of a breach of covenant, and you may lose your car or house as a result, because the stronger of the covenant partners imposes the penalties for non-performance.
This is not how God chose to work with His covenant, however, which is certainly of great benefit to man. He did something that is completely contrary to the way that man thinks and acts. He set a plan in motion to fix man’s errors of non-performance through sin, even though man regularly messes it all up. He outlined the details in His Word though His promises, and He tells man to put Him in remembrance of them. However, when He says to put in Him in remembrance, He is not saying that He is the one that needs the reminding. God is letting man know that he (man) needs reminding of God’s goodness and provision. Man needs to make himself aware of God’s word which clearly states that in spite of the sins of man, He will honor His part of the bargain.
God established the covenant as everlasting because He is in the business of restoration.
Learn more about this subject in Chapter 10 of Ideolatry,
Reason, Remembrance and Restoration
Check out Ideolatry online at http://ideolatry.com/shop, where you can purchase the Ideolatry Book and Study Guide bundle for 10% off as well as other Ideolatry Products.