Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Lose Your Guilt

There are several keys to understanding guilt.


  1. The first one is that guilt is a normal human reaction when we do something wrong, especially when we get caught. Another is that it is common among men, we all have felt it. 
  2. For Christians, guilt is not to be a lifestyle but an emotional we feel and then process through when we admit we have done wrong to God and man, and repent.
  3. Jesus is the standard of right and wrong. Also Jesus is the reason we as Christians do not have to live in a lifestyle of guilt.
  4. For Christians we do not have to suffer through a waiting period, in a sense a purgatory of shame, before we accept God’s forgiveness and let him take our guilt away. 
Once I learned this Bible verse I cherished it and quickly memorized it:
"Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1).
If you haven’t learned it yet. Memorize it. You will need it many times in life to keep from suffering false guilt and believe me the world and Satan wants you to stay miserable suffocated by false guilt, or to take upon a mantle of shame.

Experience

I don’t have to go to far in time to come up with many experiences of sin. Realize there are some sins that are general to all, for example we should all not steal or commit adultery.

But there are also many sins that are simply vows or promises between us personally and God. For example when we are going through a fast and we break it knowingly and intentionally, we sin.

Two nights ago I saw a specialty piece of chocolate left over from Christmas, it was a chocolate truffle. I was on day 6 of no meats and sweets in a fast, but I still placed that chocolate in my mouth and tried to savor the taste. 

Of course I didn’t enjoy it as much as I did all the other times I have eaten a quality piece of chocolate because I knew I was sneaking it. I felt the guilt the minute I bit it. I thought of throwing the rest of it in the trash but, no, I finished it. 

While I didn’t want anyone in my family to know I had just consumed it, that didn’t matter, because both God and I knew. 

Nailed! I had succumb to temptation and messed up my fast.

My Choice


It is at this point that I had two choices. 
  1. I could confess it to God and then give up fasting and just go back to eating meats and sweets.
  2. I could confess it to God and accept His forgiveness and go back to fasting.
Regardless of my choice I would have taken, it did no good for me to beat myself up, because even if I gave up the fasting and went back to eating the meats and sweets I was still going to have to go to God and ask Him to forgive me. If I would have ignored this step, I would have had unconfessed sin between God and myself. And I have learned very long ago, that there is no need to delay in confessing and repenting. The key to repentance is that we TURN away from the sin, that we sin no more and do what we should be doing according to God. 

What good would it be for me to hate on myself? Would that make me more sorry and a better person? 

So over the years I have learned to go quickly, to run to the cross, to confess the sin and to repent.

 It is at that moment that my relationship with God is restored. As far as God is concerned my sin is remembered no more because it is covered in the blood of Jesus. Yes, Jesus even died on the cross for this sin. And I can cling to: 
“There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1) and

“For I will forgive their wickedness and remember their sins no more” (Hebrews 8:12) and

“I have swept away your offenses as a cloud, your sins like a morning mist. Return to me for I have redeemed you. (Isaiah 44:22). 
These are just a few of the times God so graciously and beautiful tells us when he forgives our sins, we are no longer guilty! Praise God!

A Testimony


Realize that people who are not Christians and become aware of your sin will

  • not understand how you can so quickly recover, 
  • wonder how you can walk without condemnation as soon as you confess, 
  • doubt how you can make a determination before God to change and sin no more in that specific area. 
They will think you are flippant, not sorrowful enough, maybe even getting away with sin too easy; They will want you to suffer under guilt and condemnation like they do. But know that this can be a great testimony to them of God’s sufficient grace and love. This is one of the areas we have been set free. Jesus died on the cross and conquered death and rose again to set us free from the penalty, power and condemnation of sin. He says, “Go and sin no more” not “Go and suffer guilt” (John 8:11).

So obey Jesus. Accept His forgiveness. Take upon your life His grace. And go and sin no more. Allow the Holy Spirit to empower you to sin no more. Place your dependence on Him, not yourself.


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