Are you feeling guilty about something??
When we struggle with feelings of guilt, it is easy to confuse guilt and conviction. Guilt comes strictly from breaking God’s law. If at any time we break one of God’s laws we are guilty of breaking every last one (James 2:10). Yikes. That’s a lot of broken laws to face.
The problem with guilt is that God says we are no longer under the law of sin, condemnation and death which brings guilt and condemns us (Rom. 7:4,6). Therefore, if we are not under the law anymore, then it is impossible for us to break the law since it doesn’t apply to us in Christ. Instead, we now live under the grace of God (Gal. 2:21-3:5) in the New Covenant! This is a mind-blowing truth that the Holy Spirit must reveal to us.
Since Christ died for our sin and our guilt there is no need to feel guilty about anything anymore because we cannot be guilty in God’s eyes (Heb. 1:3). Feeling guilty is just a bad flesh habit we may have grown comfortable with and it is those parts of us that haven’t surrendered to Christ that welcome enemy darts. If we choose to agree with these voices of condemnation and guilt, we are choosing not to agree with God. Better to agree with God as to who He says we are and then allow the Spirit to reveal to us the source of the feeling and the appropriate action to take.
Draw your sword on wayward feelings and allow the freeing Spirit of God to classify them as truth or lie/friend or foe according to Scripture. Remember: Thoughts and feelings are potential swirling pools of nothingness in which we can entangle ourselves depending on how and whom we spend our thoughts and feelings (2 Cor. 10:5).
When we live welcoming the promptings of God’s Spirit, He will always give us a yoke that is easy, refreshing, relieving and quieting for our souls (Matt. 11:28-30). That’s because God’s way of dealing with issues is conviction of the heart. His touch is gentle and leads us to a better way while lifting us up with hope. On the contrary, guilt delivers a harsh, heavy yoke of bondage weighing and driving us downward with no relief like a slave-driver whipping us on the back. These are enemy fingerprints.
Notice how I asked, “Are you feeling guilty?” We must learn to separate our unpredictable feelings from absolute truth. Otherwise we will remain unstable. Christ instructed us to abide in Him, not in our feelings (John 15:4).
We forget that feelings are not God. God is God. We obey Him and His Word and Spirit, not necessarily our feelings. They seek to dominate and control us. And guess who manipulates them with great skill, especially through others? Yes, our #1 enemy. Hebrews 1:3 tells us that Christ died not just for our sin but for our guilt. 1 John 4:1 tells us not to put faith in every spirit. If a spirit of guilt descends on you, do not receive it or obey it because it is not of God since God says in Christ there is no condemnation for you… ever (Rom. 8:1).
Hebrews 12:1-2 instructs us to throw off everything that hinders. So, is it a surprise to us that guilt must be thrown off? Over and over again until it learns its place? James 5:16 is the answer for throwing off guilt. Share the problem with a safe person or group and receive healing prayer. Repeat the process until it loses its grip on you. If we don’t believe deep down that Christ truly has no condemnation for us, then we do not understand the covenant sacrifice and cannot apply it to our lives.
Christ never has condemnation for us, only mercy and grace in time of need (John 5:45; Heb. 2:17-18, 4:15-16, 7:25-26;1 John 2:1-2, Rev. 12:10). I realize that living in a traumatic world makes God’s endless mercy seem farfetched, but if we want to walk in agreement with Him then we must learn never to bow to a spirit of guilt and condemn ourselves. This is an internal boundary issue. God may gently convict us to apologize or forgive or release someone to set things right, but guilt and condemnation are not a part of His package for us.
Idols work against us in the Christ-filled life (2 Cor. 3:6,17)…but freedom works for us! That’s what our Savior died to give us (Gal. 5:1).
For whosoever keeps the Law [as a] whole but stumbles and offends in one [single instance] has become guilty of [breaking] all of it.
Romans 7:4, 6
4Likewise, my brethren, you have undergone death as to the Law through the [crucified] body of Christ, so that now you may belong to Another, to Him Who was raised from the dead in order that we may bear fruit for God…
6But now we are discharged from the Law and have terminated all intercourse with it, having died to what once restrained and held us captive. So now we serve not under [obedience to] the old code of written regulations, but [under obedience to the promptings] of the Spirit in newness [of life].
21[Therefore, I do not treat God’s gracious gift as something of minor importance and defeat its very purpose]; I do not set aside and invalidate and frustrate and nullify the grace (unmerited favor) of God. For if justification (righteousness, acquittal from guilt) comes through [observing the ritual of] the Law, then Christ (the Messiah) died groundlessly and to no purpose and in vain. [His death was then wholly superfluous.]
3:1 YOU poor and silly and thoughtless and unreflecting and senseless Galatians! Who has fascinated or bewitched or cast a spell over you, unto whom–right before your very eyes–Jesus Christ (the Messiah) was openly and graphically set forth and portrayed as crucified?
2Let me ask you this one question: Did you receive the [Holy] Spirit as the result of obeying the Law and doing its works, or was it by hearing [the message of the Gospel] and believing [it]? [Was it from observing a law of rituals or from a message of faith?]
3Are you so foolish and so senseless and so silly? Having begun [your new life spiritually] with the [Holy] Spirit, are you now reaching perfection [by dependence] on the flesh?
4Have you suffered so many things and experienced so much all for nothing (to no purpose)–if it really is to no purpose and in vain?
5Then does He Who supplies you with His marvelous [Holy] Spirit and works powerfully and miraculously among you do so on [the grounds of your doing] what the Law demands, or because of your believing in and adhering to and trusting in and relying on the message that you heard?
He is the sole expression of the glory of God [the Light-being, the [a]out-raying or radiance of the divine], and He is the perfect imprint and very image of [God’s] nature, upholding and maintaining and guiding and propelling the universe by His mighty word of power. When He had by offering Himself accomplished our cleansing of sins and riddance of guilt, He sat down at the right hand of the divine Majesty on high,
Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest. [I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls.]
29Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me, for I am gentle (meek) and humble (lowly) in heart, and you will find rest (relief and ease and refreshment and recreation and blessed quiet) for your souls.
30For My yoke is wholesome (useful, good–not harsh, hard, sharp, or pressing, but comfortable, gracious, and pleasant), and My burden is light and easy to be borne.
1 John 4:1
BELOVED, DO not put faith in every spirit, but prove (test) the spirits to discover whether they proceed from God; for many false prophets have gone forth into the world.
Romans 8:1THEREFORE, [there is] now no condemnation (no adjudging guilty of wrong) for those who are in Christ Jesus, who live [and] walk not after the dictates of the flesh, but after the dictates of the Spirit.
Confess to one another therefore your faults (your slips, your false steps, your offenses, your sins) and pray [also] for one another, that you may be healed and restored [to a spiritual tone of mind and heart]. The earnest (heartfelt, continued) prayer of a righteous man makes tremendous power available [dynamic in its working].
Put out of your minds the thought and do not suppose [as some of you are supposing] that I will accuse you before the Father. There is one who accuses you–it is Moses, the very one on whom you have built your hopes [in whom you trust].
So it is evident that it was essential that He be made like His brethren in every respect, in order that He might become a merciful (sympathetic) and faithful High Priest in the things related to God, to make atonement and propitiation for the people’s sins.
18For because He Himself [in His humanity] has suffered in being tempted (tested and tried), He is able [immediately] to run to the cry of (assist, relieve) those who are being tempted and tested and tried [and who therefore are being exposed to suffering].
15For we do not have a High Priest Who is unable to understand and sympathize and have a shared feeling with our weaknesses and infirmities and liability to the assaults of temptation, but One Who has been tempted in every respect as we are, yet without sinning.
16Let us then fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace (the throne of God’s unmerited favor to us sinners), that we may receive mercy [for our failures] and find grace to help in good time for every need [appropriate help and well-timed help, coming just when we need it].
Hebrews 7:25, 26
25Therefore He is able also to save to the uttermost (completely, perfectly, finally, and for all time and eternity) those who come to God through Him, since He is always living to make petition to God and intercede with Him and intervene for them.
26[Here is] the High Priest [perfectly adapted] to our needs, as was fitting–holy, blameless, unstained by sin, separated from sinners, and exalted higher than the heavens.
1 John 2:1-2
MY LITTLE children, I write you these things so that you may not violate God’s law and sin. But if anyone should sin, we have an Advocate (One Who will intercede for us) with the Father–[it is] Jesus Christ [the all] righteous [upright, just, Who conforms to the Father’s will in every purpose, thought, and action].
2And He [[a]that same Jesus Himself] is the propitiation (the atoning sacrifice) for our sins, and not for ours alone but also for [the sins of] the whole world.
Then I heard a strong (loud) voice in heaven, saying, Now it has come–the salvation and the power and the kingdom (the dominion, the reign) of our God, and the power (the sovereignty, the authority) of His Christ (the Messiah); for the accuser of our brethren, he who keeps bringing before our God charges against them day and night, has been cast out!
2 Corinthians 3:6
[It is He] Who has qualified us [making us to be fit and worthy and sufficient] as ministers and dispensers of a new covenant [of salvation through Christ], not [ministers] of the letter (of legally written code) but of the Spirit; for the code [of the Law] kills, but the [Holy] Spirit makes alive.
2 Corinthians 3:17
Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty (emancipation from bondage, freedom).
2 Corinthians 10:5
[Inasmuch as we] refute arguments and theories and reasonings and every proud and lofty thing that sets itself up against the [true] knowledge of God; and we lead every thought and purpose away captive into the obedience of Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One),
IN [this] freedom Christ has made us free [and completely liberated us]; stand fast then, and do not be hampered and held ensnared and submit again to a yoke of slavery [which you have once put off].
choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve