CCES Devotionals: Guilt

Psalm 32:5
Then I acknowledged my sin to you . . .
and you forgave the guilt of my sin.

True guilt is based on the solid fact that a person knows he has violated God's righteous law. The first step for us is to confess our sin to God. This means that we honestly agree with Him that we have done wrong. Then godly sorrow helps people turn their back on the past and start planning their future. Godly sorrow motivates us to make permanent changes that can break the cycle of guilt and sinful behavior. Godly sorrow is a choice that relies on God's mercy. But when we think we have to do something to deserve forgiveness we are saying that Christ's work on the cross wasn't enough. True repentance takes away the guilt of our sin and this brings true freedom from our sin.

False guilt is based on personal feelings rather than facts. With false guilt, Satan causes forgiven sinners to live a defeated life by accusing them and bringing to mind the former things they have done or not done. Satan wants to make us believe that God is as disgusted with our behavior as we are and that we are hopeless. When we begin believing these lies, we need to read and believe what God says in Romans 8:31-35 ". . . who can separate us from the love of Christ?"

Has guilt kept you from living a victorious Christian life? Have you truly repented? Ask God to help you change your thinking and believe His promises of forgiveness and restoration.

Go to the Bible and read Psalms 51 and 103; 1 John 1:9; Matthew 11:28-30; Isaiah 1:18; 2 Corinthians 7:10; Psalms 139:23-24; Psalms 32:1-5.

By Elaine Olson

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