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DocReits September 1, 2014 at 9:06 pm

Good article Crystal and an important topic. Don’t you believe regret and guilt remain sometimes, after supposed salvation, as a result of an incomplete understanding of the Cross? When those who claim to be saved speak of past “mistakes” which still plague them, there are these red lights which start flashing in my spirit.

“Mistakes” are like turning on the wrong street on my way to work, or forgetting to take the garbage out at night. Do we want to say it was also a “mistake” that we robbed a convenience store or cheated on our spouse? How about abandoning our family. Are those last three simply “mistakes”, or is there a difference between any of these examples? Or, are they all simply “mistakes”?

And why wouldn’t we be plagued by guilt if we counted cheating on our spouse as simply a mistake? As a Christian psychologist I would counsel people to “deal” with their “mistakes” by first understanding and then acknowledging that these previous “mistakes” are sin. Unfortunately that word “sin” is not understood by most unsaved.

Sin is breaking God’s Commandment and rebellion against His Law. Christians sometimes know this but we cannot expect unbelievers to know the same. They do not understand the depth of their rebellion problem and the weight of condemnation which they are under. They have broken a just Judge’s Law and are under God’s wrath and judgment.

They are on a path to hell and destruction and it should be terrifying. If they have not “dealt” properly with their “mistakes” you bet they should feel guilty and have regrets, because many have false conversions never having been told the simple truth I have just explained. Never offered the evidence of their position, and offered the Only solution to their plight.

That solution, as you know, under the conviction of the Holy Spirit, is confession to God of their “sin”, their “rebellion” to God’s Law(not their mistakes), crying out to God for His mercy, and trusting Christ as their Savior, believing in His sacrifice on the Cross as the payment for their “sins”(not mistakes), and believing in their heart that God raised Jesus bodily from the grave.

There is salvation. Understanding in their spirit and soul that Jesus’s sacrifice was sufficient to “take away” their sin, not merely a covering of sin(see Heb. 9:28). Their sin is not covered(God Forbid). That is what Jesus did away with. There is no need of goats and bulls any longer as a covering for our sins. Our sins are “Gone!” through the Cross. We must pray and speak in order to bring these folks to understand the Cross. Real salvation and beginning a process of unfolding a glimpse of an understanding of the Cross is essential to freedom from guilt. As we hide inside of the Cross…it is there that healing and righteousness takes place. Not our righteousness but His…imputed to me as I am hid with Him…in the Cross.

Unfortunately, many times salvation is sold as a soft story about God’s love and forgiveness and saying “The Prayer” and all will be well. And here is the important point. Many do, and are not saved, because they do not understand their “sin” problem nor the Redemptive Work of the Cross. As a result guilt often remains and rightly so.

I love the way this translation renders Ps 32 you quoted from. I think the whole Psalm is instructive but especially vs 5. Please read it in the light of these thoughts:

Psalm 32 New Living Translation (NLT)

Psalm 32
A psalm[a] of David.

1 Oh, what joy for those
whose disobedience is forgiven,
whose sin is put out of sight!
2 Yes, what joy for those
whose record the Lord has cleared of guilt,[b]
whose lives are lived in complete honesty!
3 When I refused to confess my sin,
my body wasted away,
and I groaned all day long.
4 Day and night your hand of discipline was heavy on me.
My strength evaporated like water in the summer heat. Interlude
5 Finally, I confessed all my sins to you
and stopped trying to hide my guilt.
I said to myself, “I will confess my rebellion to the Lord.”
And you forgave me! All my guilt is gone. Interlude
6 Therefore, let all the godly pray to you while there is still time,
that they may not drown in the floodwaters of judgment.
7 For you are my hiding place;
you protect me from trouble.
You surround me with songs of victory. Interlude
8 The Lord says, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life.
I will advise you and watch over you.
9 Do not be like a senseless horse or mule
that needs a bit and bridle to keep it under control.”
10 Many sorrows come to the wicked,
but unfailing love surrounds those who trust the Lord.
11 So rejoice in the Lord and be glad, all you who obey him!
Shout for joy, all you whose hearts are pure!

32:Title Hebrew maskil. This may be a literary or musical term.
32:2 Greek version reads of sin. Compare Rom 4:8.”



rpsabq September 5, 2019 at 5:32 am

except sex offenders.

Jack Wellman September 5, 2019 at 10:10 am

No, all who come to Christ (former sex offenders included!) can be forgiven and there will be no shame for those who trust in Christ.

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