Why can we not believe that Jesus has truly freed us from it?
When we hear of abuse done to the innocent, it moves us to righteous anger. We want the perpetrators punished for the injustice.
But how would we feel if rescuers were sent in and the abused girl just shook her head and said no…choosing to stay with her violators?
Has the feeling of condemnation become so familiar that we’ve bought into the lie that we deserve punishment? That we have to suffer to prove we understand the severity of our infraction? Or that we have to “do” something to make up for it?
When we live in that place, we live opposed to truth. We have aligned ourselves with the enemy and his lies. We are choosing to agree with him, rather than the One who gave His life to rescue us.
The book of Love clearly states that we are forgiven, that we are washed clean, that we’ve been reconciled to our precious Father (Eph. 1:7, Isaiah 1:18, 2 Cor. 5:18).
How do we reconcile coming down so hard on ourselves when scripture paints a completely different picture of our sin?
“There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” (Rom. 8:1)
Okay, so we may know the truth of the Bible, but what do we when our feelings say, “Yes, I am unworthy and have to make up for what I’ve done? I deserve judgment.”
And what about the utter conviction some of us have that God has to be in agreement with our self-condemnation? Some of you may be saying, But you don’t know what I’ve done, Sherri.
You’re right, I don’t know. But I do know, with absolute conviction, that God does and if you ask Him to forgive you, He will. The Bible is full of adulterers, murderers and thieves that God forgave and loved dearly.
Because, if we have sincerely repented—–and we only have to do it once—–our sin gets covered under the blood of Jesus.
Because God no longer sees your sin once you repent (Micah 7:19).
Your feelings don’t determine truth.
So then, how do we overcome our feelings and get our hearts and minds to agree with God?
Part of it is choice. We have to choose to believe that God means what He says.
And part of it is discipline. Scripture is magical. Okay, I know that word probably makes some of you cringe, but God’s word contains power. So if we start meditating on verses that pertain to the lie we are believing, God says He will come in and cut away the untruth and deposit truth (Heb. 4:12). That’s how we get transformed and changed (Rom. 12:2).
Recently, I heard a pastor talk about our approach the Bible. He said, “When are we going to stop reading what we believe and instead start believing what we read?”
I get that.
Spirits of legalism and religion focus on behavior and sin management. The Holy Spirit draws us into relationship and freedom with God.
When we draw near to Jesus and the wonder of friendship with Him, we tend to become more like Him. Our hearts get filled with love. And when we know how loved we are by Him, we start loving ourselves. And when we start loving ourselves, we don’t fall back into the sins that resulted from the deficit in our hearts.
There is a reason sinners flocked to Jesus. Have you thought about why that is?
So we shouldn’t fear going to Him with our own dark secrets. He doesn’t judge or condemn.
He welcomes us.
Father God, please reveal the truth of your Word to my soul. Lead me into deeper, life changing relationship with You. Accelerate my process to know you in intimacy and freedom. I want more of You and less of the lies this world tries to feed me. Change me and make me new in You. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Prison photo via Pixabay