by Dr. Charles Stanley
In Touch Daily Devotional
When We Feel Guilty
Guilt can be like a poison working insidiously on the inside to create havoc in our thoughts and emotions. The antidote is to understand why we feel guilty and to know what God's Word says.
Missing the message of grace results in guilty feelings, which make us think we must clean up our act ourselves in order to be a "good" Christian. The message of grace is this: At the cross, Jesus paid our sin-debt in full and declared us righteous in His sight. We don't have to measure up; through Jesus Christ, we have been made acceptable just as we are.
Confusion over confession of sin and God's forgiveness can make us feel guilty. We are concerned about hidden sins that we have not yet identified; we worry about whether we have confessed enough to be forgiven. It is true that the Bible tells us to confess our sins (1 John 1:9) but confession is not what makes us forgiven. It is what Jesus did at Calvary that obtains forgiveness of all our sins.
Refusing to let go of the past can also produce guilty emotions, because we see ourselves as undeserving of forgiveness. We know what sins we have committed and experience a continued sense of shame. Jesus Christ died on the cross so our sins could be forgiven-past, present and future ones. This is part of the miracle of grace.
The truth of God's Word will free us from the prison of "false" guilt so we might live life His way. Are you walking in freedom yet?
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For a free online discipleship study from Dr. Charles Stanley, visit www.charlesstanleyinstitute.com.