So we all know that we are all sinners right? We hear this in church all the time and all of the great Christian literature makes it clear that we, as a human race, mess up all the time and we just need to get used to it. It’s what we do.
The one thing that very rarely gets any attention though is the guilt that often comes to us Christians when we do mess up. We like to think that we hold ourselves to a higher standard than non-Christians, and I agree with that. We know the difference between right and wrong and we know when we have done something we should not have. For many Christians, guilt immediately sets in and in many cases it can become crippling to many people.
What sets Christians apart and makes us in the image of God is that we will not let ourselves get by with doing wrong and not expect some consequences to come our way. We understand that our God is a God of justice and being such, He is not going to let us off without punishment. What we need to learn to do is accept God’s punishment and stop punishing ourselves with guilt.
Here is why guilt is so debilitating – guilt comes to us when we feel separated from God. Let me take you back to the Garden of Eden the minute after Adam and Eve decided that darned apple was just too good to pass up. What happened after they bit that apple?
They realized that they were naked and that now they should be embarrassed by that. For their entire lives they were naked around each other all day every day and in the perfect world they lived in, there was no shame in that. But sin brings shame, and as well it brings guilt. They knew they did something wrong, so they tried to hide behind clothes and then they hid in the bushes. But where can you hide from a God who created everything and knows everything? Answer – no where!!!
Here is some light math for you concerning guilt:
Separation = guilty
Reconciled = not guilty
So here is the answer to our guilt! We feel guilty when we sin because we know God does not want us to sin and we now have punishment coming. So how do we get back to “not guilty?”
We confess those sins to God – “God I agree with you that what I did was a sin and it was a sin against You. You are right, I am wrong.”
We ask for forgiveness of those sins – “God, I know that Jesus Christ gave His life on that cross to pay for this sin and I accept Jesus as Savior and therefore this sin has been paid for.”
Finally, repent – “God I am going to do my best to stay away from this sin and do my best to never do this again.”
NOT GUILTY! After you takes these actions, God completely forgets you ever did the sin! It is gone, wiped clean, paid in full. NOT GUILTY!
Now Satan will still swing by your place all the time and say, “Hey remember when you did that sin? Yeah I do too and God does too and you know that He will never forgive you for that right? You know how bad that thing was you did right? I mean it is the worst sin ever! You better go hide from God – actually go get as far away from Him as you can before He cuts you down!”
Lies! But that is what Satan does – he catches us when we are weak and he piles on.
You never have to spend a second feeling guilty, that is as long as you take the proper and timely actions I listed above.
If you are not saved and have never accepted Jesus as Savior, well none of this applies to you. You do not have Jesus as Savior in your life and that means He did not die to pay for your sins, so you will pay for them eventually!! If you have never accepted Jesus as Savior and would like to know more about it or how to do it, please email me immediately and I will help you with this. It is the most important decision you will ever make – in fact your eternal destiny depends on it.
Thanks for stopping by today and I hope all of my American readers have a safe, happy and blessed Fourth of July!
Pastor Brad Komgenick