Are You Really A Sinner? Why There is No Place for Guilt in the Church
Like a constant barrage of blows to the brow and back, splitting flesh, spilling blood, and enjoying the pain, many Christians have convinced themselves that self-abuse and guilt should be the constant mindset. Proverbially sitting at the cross for their entire lives, they refuse to let Christ die and put an end to their sin, suffering, and guilt.
And while this peculiar state of mind seems strange, endless numbers of believers make a idol of their guilt and a comfort to which they cling. One need only look at the words they implement and the songs they sing. I am a “sinner.” God saved a “wretch” like me. No one is perfect. Really? Christ died so that you might be just that. We are no longer sinners. We are no longer wretches. We are perfect. However, church services, songs, and sermons spoken across the country in every kind of church consistently strive to “remind” us of how far we fall short. Pumping-up our guilt, congregants are whipped into a frenzy so that they might come forward to the crosses and “recommit” their lives to Christ.
Was this not enough the first time? Does our current guilt add anything to what Christ already accomplished on the cross? Are our “sins” so grievous that Christ did not pay for them the first time? Must we constantly re-crucify Christ to assuage our guilt?
There certainly is room for desiring a more “mirrored” and reflected life of Christ. But changing such behavior (or failing) does not bring us any closer or further from Christ. If we are truly in Him, then we are fully new creations. We do not sit at the cross in anguish, pain, and torture like the eternally frozen images of suffering popularly painted and captured at the crucifixion.
“It is finished”
These final words of Christ need to be believed and truly embraced. My sin, guilt, and punishment is finished. He has carried my burdens and payed my penalties. The veil is torn then and there. The God who was once hidden and access to Him tightly controlled due to our sin is suddenly open and accessible to all. There is no longer any sin which keeps God and man apart.
Christ spoke those final words over you and I as well. It is finished. Complete. Nothing more can be added. Guilt and condemnation no longer rest over your head. Rejoice. Praise him rather than tremble in fear and guilt.
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