donnie_brascoI guess it’s a guy thing. I could watch The Godfather parts one and two a thousand times and it would never get old (not so much part three). The same is true for Goodfellas, as well as numerous other mob-themed movies.

My wife just rolls her eyes.

The other night I was watching Donnie Brasco starring Al Pacino and Johnny Depp (for the twentieth time). In the movie, Johnny Depp plays undercover FBI agent, Joseph Pistone, who is befriended by a wiseguy named Lefty Ruggiero, played by Al Pacino.

At one point, Depp tries to explain to his fellow FBI agents the meaning of the phrase: “Fuhgeddaboudit.”

Fuhgeddaboudit means more than just “forget about it.” Among wiseguys, fuhgeddaboudit was a catch-all phrase which meant many different things depending on your tone and context.

You agree with someone that Raquel Welch is beautiful… fuhgeddaboudit. You disagree with someone that a Lincoln is better than a Cadillac… fuhgeddaboudit. The veal you ate was the most incredible food you’ve ever tasted… fuhgeddaboudit. Somebody just insulted your mother… fuhgeddaboudit.

As I listened to Johnny Depp explain the phrase fuhgeddaboudit, I thought about something God says concerning our sins. In Jeremiah 31, he tells us, “For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more.”

That lie you told your wife yesterday… fuhgeddaboudit. That angry text you sent your boyfriend last week… fuhgeddaboudit. That dumb night your sophomore year in college which still haunts you… fuhgeddaboudit.

Now, to be clear, forgiveness doesn’t mean that God forgets about it. It’s not that our sins have simply slipped his mind. Our God doesn’t forget. He chooses to remember them no more.

There’s a difference.

God chooses to forgive. He chooses to never again look at our sins. He separates them from us as far as the east is from the west.

Forgiveness also does not mean that God is saying to us, “Fuhgeddaboudit” in the sense that our sins are no big deal or he doesn’t care about them.

Every sin is a big deal. Every sin, from the smallest lie to the darkest depravity, deserves God’s eternal anger in hell.

In just a little over a week, we remember a dark Friday called Good. On that day, God chose to direct his anger for our sins onto his Son. From that moment on, he could choose to remember our sins no more because they were forever paid for.

Remember that when you fail and fall. Remember that as you lie awake at night haunted by guilt. Remember that as you sit and stare at the cross on Good Friday. Because of what Jesus did there, God remembers your sins no more.



  4 comments for “Fuhgeddaboudit

  1. Kenneth
    March 14, 2016 at 7:12 am

    Yes I too have failed, and set and stare, wondering why. Your message today, touched and tells me, I need to forgive. Thank God for Friday. He gave so much. I have given so little. Now I need to forget about it, and stop thinking so much about me and more about others.

  2. March 14, 2016 at 9:29 am

    I am so with you on “The Godfather I and II”, also not so much on the III. How much I appreciate the way you state how God ‘chooses to remember our sins no longer’. It is deliberately put away, taken care of by the death of His Son, my brother, on the cross. Thanks for this comforting reminder.

  3. Mary Ann
    March 21, 2016 at 10:07 am

    Hello Pastor Schroer,

    I enjoy reading your column. What a great reminder to me to CONITINUE to forget about past wrongs, even when the mind keeps bringing them up and tries to raise new resentments even though you’ve made a choice to forgive in the past.

    I have a question. You state, “Every sin is a big deal. Every sin, from the smallest lie to the darkest depravity, deserves God’s eternal anger in hell.” Certainly, every sin is a big deal, as we offend God, but the Bible states that not all sin sends us to hell.

    I have in mind 1 John 5:17, which says, “All unrighteousness is sin: and there is a sin not unto death.” (KJV)

    I do agree that our sins deserve God’s eternal anger in hell, but do you think that all sins can put us there?

    Mary Ann Wenske, Moulton

    • schroera
      March 21, 2016 at 11:01 am

      Thank you, Mary Ann!

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