What do you do with guilt? It can be crippling. Satan uses our past to hobble us and keep us from coming to Christ and then after salvation, serving Christ. Satan uses guilt to make the saint feel unworthy of our forgiveness and to doubt our righteousness.
The devil is effective because he uses just enough truth to blind us from the whole truth. Satan is a pervert. He perverts all that is good with lies and innuendos.
I for so long suffered from guilt; it dwarfed me. I was a Christian of small stature because I let the devil whisper in my ear that I was no good or good enough, never allowing me to see the truth. Before I got saved I believed I had to clean my act up before I could come to Jesus. That is a lie from the pit of hell and I have good news and bad news about that belief. The bad news is you will never clean your act up enough to be acceptable to God. The good news is that you do not have to:
â€œFor when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.â€ (Romans 5:6-11)
How long has the devil had you hobbled over your guilt? Have you ever sought forgiveness of sin? If you believe you are undeserving of forgiveness, you are right and you are in the right place. Mercy is receiving the forgiveness you do not deserve. Mercy is the outpouring of Godâ€™s love into our lives. Grace, with the ultimate being salvation, is receiving something you do not deserve. Mercy spares you from the punishment you deserve; grace shares heavenly blessing you do not deserve.
And understand that you cannot run from your sins. They are always around and about you. King David experienced the strangling guilt of his sins:
â€œFor innumerable evils have surrounded me; my iniquities have overtaken me, so that I am not able to look up; they are more than the hairs of my head; therefore my heart fails me.â€ (Psalm 40:12)
Davidâ€™s guilt was so overpowering it made him feel as though his heart was dying. His sins were so overwhelming he believed they outnumbered the hairs on his head. Did he really have more sins than hair? Of course not, but when you are hobbled by guilt the paralysis is intense almost to the point of hallucination. Davidâ€™s guilt was so overpowering he could not even lift up his head. So what did he do? Did he woe is me the rest of his life? No, he turned to the merciful God in Heaven who is able and willing to forgive our sins:
â€œBe pleased, O LORD, to deliver me; O LORD, make haste to help me! Let all those who seek You rejoice and be glad in You; let such as love Your salvation say continually, â€˜The LORD be magnified!â€™ But I am poor and needy; yet the LORD thinks upon me. You are my help and my deliverer; do not delay, O my God.â€ (Psalm 40:13, 16-17)
Whether you are a Christian or not, guilt is going to visit you. It is Satanâ€™s ace in the hole; sometimes it is all he has and most times it is all he needs. It is his way of obscuring our vision of Christ. Matthew Henry puts it this way:
The best saints see themselves undone, unless continually preserved by the grace of God. But see the frightful view the psalmist had of sin. This made the discovery of a Redeemer so welcome. In all his reflections upon each step of his life, he discovered something amiss. The sight and sense of our sins in their own colors, must distract us, if we have not at the same time some sight of a Savior. If Christ has triumphed over our spiritual enemies, then we, through Him, shall be more than conquerors. This may encourage all that seek God and love His salvation., to rejoice in Him, and to praise Him. No griefs or poverty can render those miserable who fear the Lord. Their God, and all that He had or does, is the ground of their joy. The prayer of faith can unlock His fullness, which is adapted to all their wants. The promises are sure, the moment of fulfillment hastens forward. He who once came in great humility, shall come again in glorious majesty.
Have you discovered something amiss as you reflect upon each step of your life?
How long have you been distracted by the colors of your sins?
Have you ever looked unto Jesus Christ? If yes, have you lost sight of Him?
We are not to live a life constantly hobbled by the guilt of sin.
We are to be continually preserved by the grace of God.
Has your sin caused such guilt that you have been overtaken and conquered by it?
Pastor Henry wrote that through Jesus Christ we â€œshall be more than conquerors.â€
Which are you? Conquered or conqueror?
More on that tomorrow…
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Copyright Â© 2011 David Jeffers