Why Isn’t ‘I’m Sorry’ Good Enough? (Lent 1-2018)

It’s Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent and the beginning of Pi and Chi: Asking and Answering Questions Why, our devotional series for Lent 2018.  And what’s the beginning of Lent without a little guilt trip?  Ash Wednesday is a perfect day to feel the deep guilt we daily brush aside. A day also to deal with the lesser guilts.  A day to fess up to all our sins, confessing both to ourselves and to God.  To give sins up, well, for 40 days which becomes a habit, so they say.

So why Pi?  While it’s a number that never repeats, there are some phrases repeated in the Life of Pi, the movie which provides the launch pad for 40 days of hard questions.  The number Pi might not repeat, but the first question the movie raises is due to the number of times Pi says, “I’m sorry!”

I’ll admit, not everyone likes the movie but then again, not everyone is a pastor who ruins movies by thinking deeply about a boy and a tiger named Richard Parker and how it relates to Christianity.  In fact, someone even put together a video entitled Everything Wrong with the Life of Pi in 4 Minutes or Less and calculates 55 cinematic sins the movie commits.  It was a good laugh, even if real sin is no laughing matter.

On this Ash Wednesday, I ask you to adorn yourself with your Christian Thinking Cap (which incidentally is not made of tin foil). 

If God is so loving and so forgiving, then “Why Isn’t ‘I’m Sorry’ Good Enough?”


Couldn’t Adam and Eve just say “I’m sorry”

and God would have been loving and forgiving and let it go?

We’ll spend a few days on this topic of apology, but for now, the short answer is that God couldn’t let the words “I’m sorry” cover the guilt of such sin.  If we understand guilt and sin and who we’ve sinned against, it becomes clear:

Apology is only half of it.  Action is required. God acted by giving us Jesus.  “Repent and believe the good news!” (Mark 1:15)  

So, in the meantime, food for thought:

  • Has someone ever hurt you deeply with words or actions that cannot be undone?  
  • What made the situation irreversible?  Was “I’m Sorry” good enough when they said it?  Is irreversible the same as unforgiveable?
  • Have you ever hurt someone—whether a loved one, a friend, or a total stranger—and never uttered an apology to them? 
  • Or have you said “I’m sorry” only to repeat the same offense?

Join me tomorrow for another look at “I’m sorry” with “Why Is Sin Against God Any Worse Than Against Man?”


For Lent 2018, we’ll explore the questions of Pi and Chi (the Greek letter beginning the word Christos, which means Christ, Messiah, the Anointed One). We’ll ask and answer the question “Why?” as we discover the uniqueness of Jesus Christ.  Join me for the 40 days of Lent beginning February 14, 2018 by liking Seminary Gal on Facebook or having these devotionals sent to your email box which you can do via the sign-up on my Home page.  Thank you for blessing me with this opportunity to study together the Word of God.


Acknowledging that former years’ devotional series remain popular:

Categories Articles and Devotionals, Devotionals | Tags: | Posted on February 14, 2018

Social Networks: RSS Facebook Twitter Google del.icio.us Stumble Upon Digg Reddit

Leave a Reply