73 Freedom from Guilt and Shame John 3:17 Part 2
Updated: Oct 13, 2021
So if God sent Jesus to save us instead of judge or condemn us why do we experience so much guilt? Discover the source of guilt and shame and how to deal with it. God is just so amazing when seen through the eyes of Jesus.
Cleansing from Condemnation or Guilt:
We are accused by:
From Eden we retained a sense of integrity, there is a right way and a wrong way. What is right is determined by our family, culture and education. Sometimes we are misinformed as to what is right and what is wrong. People used to believe that smoking was a remedy for some respiratory diseases. Some Christians believe that suffering is a punishment from God. Some believe that sinners are burned forever. Some believe that Sunday is the day commanded by the fourth commandment.
One of the worst consequences of sin is that we condemn others. It is almost irresistible for a sinner to put others down. Each one of us is a victim of some other sinner’s condemnation and we need God’s salvation or justification to cope with these attacks.
He is the accuser of every being in the universe. He accuses God, the angels and people on this planet. Revelation 12:9–10 (NLT) This great dragon—the ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, the one deceiving the whole world—was thrown down to the earth with all his angels. 10 Then I heard a loud voice shouting across the heavens, “It has come at last— salvation and power and the Kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Christ. For the accuser of our brothers and sisters has been thrown down to earth— the one who accuses them before our God day and night.
What about God or Jesus Christ or the Holy Spirit condemning us? John 16:8-9 NLT
Dealing with Guilt or Condemnation: True Guilt: (Intrinsic guilt) requires confession (identification) and restitution. God gives us the courage to do so. False guilt: removed by the truth. Son who “borrows” his father’s car and fixes “his” damage. Neurotic Guilt or Shame: “I’m never good enough and I do not know the cause of this awful feeling.” This feeling results in compulsive behavior, depression, and addiction. It is propagated by racism, sexism and selfishness. The residential schools in Canada are an example of a shame producing agency. Eventually, And when he (Holy Spirit) comes, he will convict the world of its sin, and of God’s righteousness, and of the coming judgment. 9 The world’s sin is that it refuses to believe in me. The Holy Spirit is advocating with us to believe in Jesus as the Christ. He is not condemning us for our sins. Acts 8:22 (NLT) Repent of your wickedness and pray to the Lord. Perhaps he will forgive your evil thoughts,
gossip and criticism and prejudice become our truth. Often professional therapy is necessary to identify the cause of our shame. Home remedies and self-medication can help a person who is physically ill but sometimes you need a medical expert to help the body heal through surgery or an induced coma. We find a parallel with shame. Automatic Negative ThoughtS (ANTS) are a huge part of the problem of sin. They intrude on our self- consciousness and we need to identify them and deal with them, either personally or with expert assistance. Shame is dealt with by sincere, truthful affirmation. God did this for Jesus at his baptism. He owned him, loved him and affirmed him. “This is my beloved son in whom I am well pleased” (Mark 1:11). God wants to do this for you and often he will use other people to accomplish this healing.
James 5:16 Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results. Hebrews 10:24-25 NLT
Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. 25 And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of his return is drawing near.
One of our major sins is the self-condemnation we allow in our lives.
Hebrews 9:9–14 (NLT) This is an illustration pointing to the present time. For the gifts and sacrifices that the priests offer are not able to cleanse the consciences of the people who bring them.
10 For that old system deals only with food and drink and various cleansing ceremonies—physical regulations that were in effect only until a better system could be established. 11 So Christ has now become the High Priest over all the good things that have come. He has entered that greater, more perfect Tabernacle in heaven, which was not made by human hands and is not part of this created world. 12 With his own blood—not the blood of goats and calves—he entered the Most Holy Place once for all time and secured our redemption forever. 13 Under the old system, the blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a young cow could cleanse people’s bodies from ceremonial impurity. 14 Just think how much more the blood of Christ will purify our consciences from sinful deeds (deeds and thoughts that lead to death and useless rituals) so that we can worship the living God. For by the power of the eternal Spirit, Christ offered himself to God as a perfect sacrifice for our sins.
The work of Christ is far more than satisfying a legal requirement. It is about healing, about restoring, about inspiring sinners to think and feel like saints. It is the purification of our consciousness of our guilt and shame. It is not covering up the guilt and shame but dealing with it. To do so, we have to identify our guilt (what we have done that is wicked) and identify our shame (The negative thoughts we think about ourselves.) This is part of what true Christian fellowship is about, providing safe places where we can talk about our wickedness and negative self-images (James 5:16; Hebrews 10:22-25).
Question: How shall we know if we believe that God does not condemn us? Answer: If we no longer need to condemn others. Your attitude reveals your picture of God.