Destroying Self-Condemnation

Disclaimer: This post is from the archives, and may not represent the current views of the author. It also may not be at all interesting to read. Continue at your own peril!

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death. (Romans 8:1-2)

Sorry about saying that so many times, but I think it’s worth the repetition. Somehow I have to get that through my thick skull, in spite of all my failures, and in spite of all the times I let my Saviour down. I don’t think I will ever understand His love for me, nor His grace that covers all my sin. He forgets them and chooses never to hold them against me – but all the while, I still hold them against myself. Somehow I think that’s the key to conquering sin bit by bit – choosing not to hold yourself accountable for your own failures. After all, love keeps no record of wrongs; perhaps I just need to love myself more. The more I learn to love the worst of sinners, myself, the way God does, perhaps the more I will learn to love others that way too.

I think it’s worth reading the previous few verses in that passage in Romans. Here’s Paul, the super-spiritual guy, and he still struggles with the same things that plague us all. It’s the agony of knowing the right thing to do and yet never doing it, all the while doing exactly what we hate. Sufferers are we, for our cross we must bear – yet Jesus offers us the lighter burden. For the other choice is to eternally bear the burden of knowing that despite our good works, we didn’t measure up. One type of suffering is temporary, but the alternative lasts forever. Let’s all learn to shoulder our cross with the knowledge that some day, it’ll be worth it.

“I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.

“So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!” (Romans 7:15-25a)

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