Tag Archives: guilt

Old Self Crucified

Most Christians understand and accept the concept of the substitutionary sacrifice of Christ. But what many are far less familiar with is the meaning behind what Paul says :

“knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, that our body of    sin might be done away with, that we would no longer be slaves to sin. For   he who has died is freed from sin.” (Romans 6:6-7)           

When Paul says that we are freed from sin, he uses the same Greek word that is translated justified or made righteous we discussed in detail in the last chapter. Verse 7 can literally be translated: “For he who has died is acquitted from sin.” We all know what happens when someone is acquitted in a trial—he’s found not guilty of the charge brought against him.

This is exactly what God caused to happen for us as Christ took the guilt and punishment of sin off our shoulders and laid it upon Himself: we have been found not guilty in regard to our sin. So this should help us to better understand the fact that our ability to experience God’s life consists of something a great deal more than merely maintaining sinless behavior now that we’re saved.

Not into Guilt Trips

Believers often fail to appreciate a principle critical to our pursuit of God. It’s this: God isn’t into guilt trips; He’s on a gift trip. Which means what? It means that everything we need has already been provided in Christ. Picture God’s outstretched hand, all His abundance there for the taking by anyone who will simply come to Him asking for it.(2 Corinthians 1:20)

We can have all we want of God, but on the other hand He will never force anything on us. God won’t brow-beat or coerce His children in any way into receiving what He wants for them. Given the fact that the gift itself (not to mention the Giver) should provide more than sufficient motivation to seek greater intimacy with God, resorting to the use of guilt to compel someone to take advantage of such abundance seems a bit ridiculous, doesn’t it?      

It’s true that we are obligated to build relationship with God.(Hebrews 6:12) But a sincere pursuit of God should stem from the fact that we are assured of all He has promised, not by a twisted hope of obtaining God’s blessings from the incentive of guilt, pressure or greed.(2 Corinthians 7:1)

Still, intimacy with God needs to begin somewhere. So it’s not surprising to see our motivation to spend time with Him springing from a somewhat distorted sense of obligation. And that’s an okay beginning. Yet there’s something wrong—something missing—if seeking to be in His presence doesn’t eventually become a pursuit of the heart rather than merely that of duty.

Excerpted from: Free from the Power of Sin: The Keys to Growing in God in Spite of Yourself

Run to God

By its very nature, sin—especially hidden sin—just naturally opens wide the floodgates of guilt and shame. So we try to bury it, just like everyone else does, hoping that those around us will never discover who we really are.

Satan has used the tool of shame in countless Christians’ lives to drag them into a back-slidden condition where alienation from God becomes a way of life. Just think how being more open about our weaknesses would serve to cripple this strategy the devil so routinely exploits.(James 5:16)

Rather than allowing sin to drive us from God, we need to run headlong to God when we sin. This can be very difficult for us, though, because we’ve been taught throughout life to behave ourselves. And when we don’t, our conscience tells us we must clean up our act before we can ever go to God with the problem. After all, how else might we feel like we’re worthy enough to deserve His help? Though this assumption is entirely false, it’s very real to us all the same.

Excerpted from: Free from the Power of Sin: The Keys to Growing in God in Spite of Yourself

 

 

Law was a Must!

Prior to his sin being exposed by God’s commandment, Adam didn’t realize that he harbored rebellion in his heart, since there was no standard by which it could have been measured. But there is no doubt that this weakness was there, because as soon as law arrived, sin was right there on its heels.(Romans 7:7)

God most likely wanted Adam to stay away from that tree well before He ever gave the commandment, but Adam couldn’t be blamed if he didn’t know it was wrong to eat of its fruit. So had he eaten it prior to God’s command, he would not have been held guilty of any offence.(Romans 4:15)

Still, had law never been given, Adam’s self-willed nature (sin in the flesh) would have been just as destructive over time. Why? Because the self-interest inherent in his nature would naturally have come into play as he interacted with his offspring—and they with him. The only difference here is that, in the absence of law, guilt for their sin could not be charged to them. It’s not hard to see why, then, law is so necessary in God’s eyes.(Galatians 3:19, Romans 3:20)

There’s no question that it was imperative for God to impose such a standard, because in the absence of law mankind would have rapidly self-destructed.(Romans 7:13)

You have the Victory

My child, shake off guilt, condemnation and shame. Shake off fear, anxiety and worry. You are My child, bought with My blood and redeemed for My purposes. You are clothed in royalty and have the crown of life. Take up every piece of armor available to you and stand. Rule and reign in the midst of your enemies. You are a warrior. you are a fighter and in Me you have the victory!

What Are You Overcome With?

Second Peter 2:19 says, “For by what a man is overcome, by this is he enslaved.”

My child, are you overcome with fear, guilt, anxiety or shame? Or are you overcome with truth, love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control? Those who belong to Me have crucified the flesh with it’s passions and desires. If you live by the Spirit you will also walk by the Spirit. Choose to walk in Me today.

Galatians: 5:22-25