There is a common mantra in christianity that “getting saved” involves asking forgiveness for all sins a person has ever committed. That error is derived mostly from the false English translation of the Greek “hamartia,” which is a singular condition, and not multiple actions.
The correct translation of verses with that word would be, then, that salvation comes by first repenting of “hamartia,” which is the only sin that condemns. It is the singular condition caused by unbelief—it is the condition of unrighteousness, which is not having the righteousness of the Holy Spirit. It is the condition into which all people are born because of Adam’s sin.
Verses like John 3:18 and Hebrews 3:19 show us that such a condition makes one “condemned already,” and that condemnation has nothing to do with actions (sins of the flesh), but with condition (unrighteousness).
Before one receives the Holy Spirit, being in a condition of condemnation already, there is no sin of the flesh that even applies to his unrighteous state, as there is nothing he can do that will make him “more condemned.” His unbelief IS the death sentence—the determinant of his being sent to hell. That destination never has anything to do with actions, but with condition.
As Messiah Yahoshua said in Matthew 12:31, all transgressions (sinful actions—sins of the flesh) will be forgiven of men, but blasphemy of the Holy Spirit (unbelief) will not be forgiven.
And, as we see in Revelation 20:13, hell will give up its dead (unbelievers) to be judged according to their works, and then they will be cast into the lake of fire. If they are in hell already, and they have not yet been judged according to their works, then it wasn’t their works that sent them to hell. It was their unbelief (“hamartia”).
Likewise, those who have the Holy Spirit (those who are truly born again by the direct testimony of the Spirit to them) will also be judged according to their works, but that judgment is not for punishment, nor does it determine eternal destiny—they already have eternal life. That judgment is for reward alone.
So, to say that part of salvation is the forgiveness of “sins” is illogical, as that would mean that all believers will receive the same rewards—they will all be equal. And, if that were the case, then the entire construct of reward would be meaningless.
Why would believers need to “make themselves holy” if there is no reward for doing so?
Making oneself holy is not something that is pleasant to the flesh—it is the denial of the flesh, the crucifixion of the flesh. The desire to “finish well” is tied to eternal reward.
Those who deny their flesh AFTER they have been made righteous by the indwelling Spirit will experience the glory of Yah firsthand within the gates of the sanctuary (New Jerusalem).
Those who do not sacrifice their flesh after being made righteous will not have that access—they will remain outside the gates of the sanctuary. They will still be in heaven, but will not have the reward that those who made themselves holy will have.
Sins of the flesh do not apply to salvation, so they have nothing to do with being born again. They apply to those who actually do possess the Holy Spirit as a measure for eternal reward.
Look to the thief on the cross. He did not ask forgiveness for a single sin he had committed.
He merely repented of his unbelief (which is to believe), and he confessed Messiah Yahoshua before others. After he did that, He was TOLD that he was given eternal life—he was not required to demonstrate how much his behaviors had changed—for that has NOTHING to do with being born again.
That is the salvation model, and it applies to all humanity. Believe in Messiah, confess Him before others (usually involving some personal or relational risk), and then wait to be TOLD by the Holy Spirit that you are a child of Yah.
Asking forgiveness for all of one’s sins is just as superfluous and unscriptural as “accepting Christ into one’s heart.” They are both false teachings of christianity that obfuscate the true path to salvation, and actual evidence that is given to those who receive the Holy Spirit (His confirmation).
For more information: The Way of the Thief