Category Archives: No more guilt or condemnation

Q236 “am I still a sinner?”

I give myself between 450 to 500 words to write a post, that’s not always enough words to make plain every aspect of the subject matter, but today I want to leave readers with absolute certainty about what I hold to be true.

A few days ago someone made this comment to me; “for Christ’s sake, why don’t you stop playing around and tell people they are sinners?”, or words to that effect.

The answer is simply because; we are not sinners!!!  this blog aims at renewing the minds of believers, (that’s not to say that if an unbeliever stumbles upon my blog I don’t want them to read it ~ but they cannot yet have their mind renewed because the Spirit of God has not yet made His home in them, and so they need to face up to their need for a saviour first); ~ but they are not the group that I am writing to. I am writing to believers… and they are not sinners.

This statement may seem like presumptuous sacrilege to some people, and indeed it would be if it depended on my own efforts, but it has nothing to do with my efforts ~ it is 100% the outcome of the shed blood of Christ.

John 16: 8-11 tells us; “And He (the Holy Spirit), when He comes, will convict the world concerning sin, and righteousness, and judgment; 1. concerning sin, because they do not believe in Me; 2. and concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father and you no longer see Me; 3. and concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world has been judged”. Lets unpack this; The Holy Spirit will convict the unsaved of their sin and their need for a saviour, He will convict the saved of their righteousness in Christ, and He will convict satan that he stands condemned. The Holy Spirit no longer convicts the believer of sin, because the blood of Christ has destroyed sin on their behalf, if He were to convict believers of sin he would be declaring that the blood of Christ was not enough.

Yet; that is exactly what many Christians are taught the world over, they are taught that sin remains in them, that they must continually confess it to retain their standing with God ~ this teaching is the biggest miscarriage of the truth possible, it is a lie from the pit of hell, as Paul puts it “it is another gospel”. I will not have a bar of that teaching, it is the most destructive, debilitating, deception yet invented by the religious controllers.

You might say; ‘but I still sin’… yes, we all fail, we all get things wrong, we all miss the mark ~ simply put; we forget or fail to live in our new identity in Christbut our new nature is sinless regardless, we were made perfect by His blood.

Graeme

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Filed under My perfect union with God, No more guilt or condemnation, Renewing the mind, The complete work of Jesus

Q211 “what’s the most offensive thing a Christian can do?”

Ok, I don’t know the answer if we are talking about whether swearing is worse than lying… or omission is worse than commission.

But I do know that there is one thing that causes the angels to squirm and the demons to laugh  out loud more than anything – ‘when Christians don’t believe in the efficacy of the blood of Jesus‘. It must make the hosts of heaven so frustrated that they could spit when a believer lives no different from an unbeliever, knowing that the blood of Jesus has set them so far apart –(I’m not sure if angels spit).

And it’s not just angels, Rom.8:19 says “The creation waits in eager expectation for the sons of God to be revealed”, everything created is observing humanity watching and waiting to see who gets it, anticipating the moment when the powerful blood of Jesus exerts it’s mighty energy against a stubborn heart or situation. The created world has eyes, and they are trained on us, waiting to see if we will entrust everything to Jesus.

The most offensive thing a Christian can ever do is to carry in his heart the very Spirit of God, to bear the perfect righteousness of Jesus as a gift of grace, to be hidden with Christ in God… and yet live his life as if this was some sort of heavenly fairy tale, a divine myth that it’s nice to know about, but requires no real personal response.

I am so utterly infused with the blood of Christ that it is more real than a dip into a hot bath at home, how could I live as if this fact was somehow theoretical or metaphorical. The angels must scratch their heads in amazement when they observe us Christians in such a divinely cleansed condition, but living as if nothing has happened.

So, what to do ?

In some respects it is easier to live inoffensively before the eyes of mankind – than the blood of Jesus. The world simply wants us to live decently, but the blood of Christ deserves our life, our soul, our all. In the same way that the blood of those martyred in Rev.6:9 cried out to God for vengeance, so also the blood of Christ cries out to us to believe in it’s life giving power.

By now most readers will know that I’m not one for piling-on condemnation… because, there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, we do however have a unique opportunity to live as people who have plunged headlong into the fountain filled with blood. An image that would border on the macabre were it not the very substance of the author of life Himself.

Its the only blood that washes whiter than snow…

Graeme

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Filed under No more guilt or condemnation, Renewing the mind, The adventure of Faith

Q203 ” what’s the worst thing you have ever done ?”

As far as I know I haven’t met anyone who has murdered anyone, (but you never know for sure because it’s not the kind of thing one broadcasts). Taking a life has got to be high on the list of bad acts, but there are plenty of others; adultery, robbery, deceit, abortion, pride, addiction, indifference…etc.

One thing I am certain of is that if you ask a person what is the thing they are most ashamed of doing in their life – something immediately comes to mind. It seems to me almost everyone has got a ‘stand-out failure’ that they regret deeply. Whats yours ?

Being mindful of our failings is a normal human condition, we are wired up toward guilt, we wish we could relive that moment or period in our lives – we wish we could take it all back and do it the right way. We wish…

My observation is that in the main, Christians are not as good at forgiving themselves as God is. We have a tendency to hold on to regret and guilt as if it is a burden we are expected to bear for life, in exchange for our salvation. The notion of forgiving ourselves for our past failings can seem irresponsible considering the hurt and pain our actions may have caused. We tend to see forgiveness as being a condition that pertains to eternal life after we die, but not especially related to the here and now… Why?because our mind wont let us forget our worst moments.

Rom. 12:2 instructs us to “be transformed by the renewing of our mind“… I would contend that, if after receiving the gift of righteousness from Christ we continue to be conscious of our sins, then we have not allowed our minds to be renewed. If the blood of Christ is powerful to wash away our sin, then we must allow ourselves to fully agree with it’s work and declare ourselves perfect, holy and righteous. To do less is to call the blood of Jesus ineffective and the word of God a lie. There is nothing godly or spiritual about feeling unworthy – the blood of Christ has made every believer completely worthy before God.

Becoming righteous is not a process that depends on the maturity of our Christian walk, it is an instantaneous transformation. God  is not slowly chipping away at us to get us into shape, he re-built us in his image in a split second when we believed.

We wouldn’t be ready to stand before God in a million years if it depended on some divine personal improvement program, No, we were completely improved when we were re-born of God.

ain’t it grand !!

cheers, G

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Filed under Christ in me, No more guilt or condemnation, The complete work of Jesus

Q181 ” which bridge to burn, which bridge to keep ?”

If you burn your bridges, you do something that makes it impossible to go back from the position you have taken. Yet so often we are reluctant to burn some bridges that should have been set alight the moment we received salvation. The result is that we cross back and forward over some matters of faith that we were only meant to cross once.

Lets take John 5:24 as an example, “I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life”. That bridge must be burned, we don’t ever want to re-cross it back to death.

How do we burn that bridge? Contrary to what you may have heard it is not by doing good and living a life that is pleasing to God, it is by believing that Jesus did good and His life was pleasing to God. In fact by placing confidence in our own good works we construct a gospel which is different to the one that saves us. The gospel that saves us is by grace alone, and the gospel that keeps us saved is by the same grace aloneif only we just stopped living so introspectively we would discover that in Christ all fear of failing is dead and gone.

What bridge do we keep? We retain the bridge of ‘faith in the blood of Jesus’- it is the ONLY bridge we need. Everyday our lives are lived from the fullness of our inheritance in Him. Everyday we drink deep drafts of the water of life. The sacrifice that Christ made for us has resolved every issue both spiritual and physical we will ever have.

2 Peter 1:3 says “His power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him”. The bridge of the knowledge of the complete work of Christ on our behalf is a forever and ever bridge.

Yet how many have retained the bridge that ‘we crossed over from death to life’ – simply by the act of fearing that He is still measuring our worthiness. We are worthy by His grace not by our works.

And how many have burnt the bridge of ‘faith in the blood of Jesus’ – simply by placing confidence in their own righteousness instead of His. We are worthy by his grace not by our works.

The power of the blood of Christ has burnt the bridge of the dominion of the kingdom of darkness over me, I will not re-construct the bridge that cost Him his life by doubting that His sacrifice was sufficient – even for me.

Graeme

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Filed under It's all about Jesus, No more guilt or condemnation, Renewing the mind, The complete work of Jesus

Q108 ” do suicides go to heaven ?”

There has been a view among Christians that I have heard since my childhood that people who commit suicide go to hell. I heard it again recently and was so disturbed that I feel I must try to clear up some very wrong thinking.

Primarily the idea behind this error is that; if we are in sin as we die then we are excluded from heaven because of our action of defiance against what God holds sacred… human life.

Let me make 2 points:-

1. If we are in Christ then we are not (ever) in sin !! Our sinful nature has been removed from us at the cross and we have been born again of God. We may fail at times along life’s journey, but we will never again be encumbered by the depraved and godless condition known as the sinful nature. This was permanently removed by the magnificent work of Christ and we received it by placing faith in His work.

2. There is no longer any sin that God is offended by. It doesn’t matter how gross, the power of Christ’s shed blood blew all of mankind’s sins into oblivion. We simply need to receive that reality by faith. The sin against the Holy Spirit is altogether different as it is a rejection of Christ’s atoning sacrifice after fully grasping the truth of it. In other words having a genuine revelation of Christ and Him crucified and then saying No! I don’t want it.

A Christian I know recently chose to comfort a family member of someone who committed suicide by proclaiming that the person was now in hell. This is an appalling abuse of not only the person involved but also the sacrifice of Christ. It implies that Christ’s sacrifice is not adequate to deal with all sin, only those sin’s that we have an opportunity to repent of before we die.

This is not the gospel of Jesus Christ, but rather a distorted mix of legalism and proud religious superiority.

If you know my blogs then you will be aware that this reaction is somewhat out of character for me. I don’t usually go to the trouble of confronting individual errors, I normally discuss more general issues of our faith.

In this instance I feel I must address such a miscarriage of the good news square on. Jesus came to unconditionally rescue us from our predicament of sin, death and satan. And He did it!!

Graeme

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Filed under No more guilt or condemnation, Renewing the mind, The complete work of Jesus, The defeat of satan, sin & death

Q19 “what if I die before repenting of a sin ?”

Its a fearful thought to have walked your whole life as a Christian and then to mess up at 1 minute to midnight. This question is similar to yesterday ‘how can I be sure I am saved’. It springs from the notion that there is something I do that adds to or takes away from my salvation. One of the hardest things for mankind to accept is that God has ceased from scrutinising your life, a remnant of guilt and condemnation always seems to linger.

Rom. 8:1 says ‘there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus’. That means that God’s awareness of our sin ended when we received Christ’s righteousness. From that moment on God can only see us hidden in Christ, we are lost in His virtue. We are forever imprinted with Christ’s perfect DNA, if we still feel guilty then it has got nothing to do with God… feeling guilty is agreeing with satan as opposed to God’s word.

When Christ removed our sin nature at the cross it means that all of the sins we have committed or may still commit, have already been repented of. It is not about keeping short lists anymore… its about trusting that all my sin  was nailed to the cross 2000 years ago, even the one that I don’t get time to repent of.

Stressing over failure is un-Godly living, it is fixing our eyes on ourselves instead of on Christ – Heb. 12:2. Religion is wrapped up in doing things to stay in God’s good books, relationship is resting that my name is forever written in the book of life. This kind of living is very different from the way humanity operates, it takes some effort to retrain our thinking… but the prize is worth the effort. Heb. 12:2 goes on to say ‘Christ is the author and perfecter of our faith’, it seems to me we should restfully allow Him to undertake His job description in our lives – perfecting our faith.

Perhaps the biggest transition to take place for a Christian is the one where we truly believe and trust that Christ did everything necessary, and for me to relax in His love and goodness.

Graeme

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Filed under Gazing upon the cross, Grace - the most lavish gift, No more guilt or condemnation, Renewing the mind, The complete work of Jesus, The defeat of satan, sin & death

Q3. “can I trust God’s word ?”

‘God’s Word’ is such a loaded statement in the mind of a Christian. Just the mention of it and Christians will give a passionate defense of their point of view.

Pre or post tribulation; literal 6 day creation; wearing hats in church… these and a hundred more subjects have become the theological battle ground of Christendom through the ages.

The question is not whether our doctrinal position is the correct one, but whether the whole point of the Word of God is about something far more important than doctrinal positions.

I’m not saying we shouldn’t have correct theology. What I am saying is that Christ came to give us LIFE (John 10:10), and it would be an insult to the sacrifice Christ made, to reduce the very life He came to give me to a theological position.

The point I am making is this; have I sufficiently processed the 2 previous questions ‘is God good’ and ‘does God love me’, that I am ready to entrust my very existence into His words. Am I at the point where if God says ‘never will I leave you, never will I forsake you’ (Heb. 13:5), that I let go of fear and begin to rest in His goodness.

One of the mistakes we Christians make is thinking that God’s Word needs defending, as if winning a debate about a doctrinal position somehow makes it true. God’s word is proven to be true when we take the risk of believing it in our everyday lives and situations, when we take the message and by faith lose ourselves into its fidelity.

Back to the original question ‘can I trust God’s word ?’  We have to believe something – if your circumstances are saying God doesn’t care, but His word say’s I do care, just look at Christ’s sacrifice, then we have a choice to make – will we take the risk of resting in His word?

It is a big step to go from a theologically based Christianity to faith based Christianity. It  may seem reckless and perhaps even unwise to risk so much… the alternative may be an even bigger risk!

Graeme

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Filed under Gazing upon the cross, How to be a believer, No more guilt or condemnation, Renewing the mind