33 Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. 34 Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.
Just recently, I was having a conversation with a young man about forgiveness, and feeling forgiven by God. This young man was telling me that even though he repented, and confessed his sin, he is struggling with still feeling condemned, still feeling shame. This young man was asking me about what to do. We talked about this from a few different angles, but eventually we came to the reality that he needed to believe Scripture more than he believed his feelings, and in believing Scripture more than his feelings and praying for God to restore the joy of salvation (as David did in Psalm 51), the sense of forgiveness should follow—regardless of his feeling, he was still forgiven. We also talked about how to not simply listen to his heart, but also learn to speak truth to his heart. Just as David, asked “Why so downcast my soul? Hope in God!” (Psalm 42.5), we learn to speak truth to our hearts, to remind our hearts of the gospel.
Another great model of speaking truth to our doubts is found in Romans 8. Paul is asking questions to cause us to remember what God has done for us, so that we can rejoice in forgiveness and be confident in the love of God, even when circumstances are painful. Paul is helping us believe the gospel. This is so important to do after we sin and we still feel shame.
We ask our hearts, “Who will bring any charge against me?”
The answer: No one! Why?
“Because God has chosen me, and he is the one who justifies me!”
“On what basis does he justify me?”
“Is it because of my good works out weigh my bad?”
The answer: No!
On what basis, then?! Jesus died, was raised, and he intercedes for us!
Because of Jesus’ faithfulness, God looks on him and pardons us of all of our sin. As this sinks in, shame, embarrasment, and feelings of condemnation begin to melt away, and we stand and sing as we did last Sunday,
“My Sin—of the bliss of this glorious thought—my sin not in part, but the whole, is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more; Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!”
It is Well with My Soul
We invite you to attend a worship service at FCC on Sundays at 9 and 11 am.