Continued from last week…
Let’s look at a woman who had every reason to hang on to her shame, but Christ handed her freedom.
John 8:1-11 English Standard Version (ESV)
8 1 but Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. 2 Early in the morning he came again to the temple. All the people came to him, and he sat down and taught them. 3 The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery and placing her in the midst 4 they said to him, “Teacher, this woman has been caught in the act of adultery. 5 Now in the Law, Moses commanded us to stone such women. So, what do you say?” 6 This they said to test him, that they might have some charge to bring against him. Jesus bent down and wrote with his finger on the ground. 7 And as they continued to ask him, he stood up and said to them, “Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her.” 8 And once more he bent down and wrote on the ground.9 But when they heard it, they went away one by one, beginning with the older ones, and Jesus was left alone with the woman standing before him. 10 Jesus stood up and said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” 11 She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you; go, and from now on sin no more.”
Jesus meets us where we are, but He will not let us stay there. He transforms us through His grace.
I heard this quote the other day and it really resonated with me- “Christ’s ability to save us is greater than Adam’s ability to corrupt us.” (John Calvin)
Not one single person EVER has been beyond the reach of Christ’s forgiveness.
Galatians 2:20 (ESV)
I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
When we take our broken pieces and give them to Jesus, He makes us new. We don’t need to clean up our act before we go to Him. That completely negates our need for a Savior. If we could do it on our own, then we would not need Jesus.
By accepting Christ’s sacrifice on the cross as the one and only atonement for sin, God doesn’t see us in our broken and sinful flesh, He sees only the blood of His precious Son. We are given a new identity. That girl you were before? She’s dead! Her sin was nailed to the cross of Christ.
We are identified by our relationship with Jesus, not our resume of sin.
Romans 6:6-11 (ESV)
5 For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his. 6 We know that our old self[a] was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin. 7 For one who has died has been set free[b] from sin. 8 Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. 9 We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him. 10 For the death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives he lives to God. 11 So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.
Then what are we supposed to do with our guilt and shame?
We should be taking them both straight to Jesus. He is the only one who is equipped to eradicate our sin once and for all.
1 John 1:9 (ESV)
“If we confess our sins He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness”
Psalm 103:12 (ESV)
“As far as the East is from the West, so far does He remove our transgressions from us.”
Galatians 5:1 (ESV)
“For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.”
I think our culture plays a huge role in this mindset and it works gloriously to Satan’s advantage. We are quick to condemn and slow to forgive. It conditions us to expect the same thing from God, but He doesn’t fit into our tiny boxes. He is gracious and just and good. He is waiting with open arms for you to rest and bask in His FREEDOM.
John 8:35-36 (ESV)
35 The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. 36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.
Maybe you have not decided yet to follow Jesus with your life and accept His gift of freedom from guilt and shame. If you are interested in accepting Jesus as your personal Savior, you can do so right now!
Romans 10:9 (ESV)
“if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.”
There is no perfect prayer or formula- but if you’ve never prayed before or are unsure where to start, you can follow along with me:
“Dear God, I know that I am a sinner and I know that there is nothing that I can do to save myself. I trust Christ alone as the One who bore my sin when He died on the cross. I believe that He did all that will ever be necessary for me to stand before you. I believe that Christ was raised from the dead and has conquered sin once and for all. I choose to trust in Him and take Him at His word. I am grateful that you have promised to forgive me of my many sins and failures and have given me new life in Him. Thank you for the assurance that you will walk with me through anything. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.”
If you made the decision to follow Jesus just now, we are ECSTATIC for you! We would love to welcome you to God’s family and help you grow deeper in your faith! Please let us know so we can pray with you, offer you a Bible if you need one and help you grow in your faith.
When that voice of guilt and shame starts to creep its way back into your thoughts, remember this verse:
Romans 8:1-2 (ESV)
“There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. [a] 2 For the law of the Spirit of life has set you[b] free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.”
Live free from guilt and unashamed!
Diane Haupt is a stay-at-home wife and mother and serves on the Embrace Team, Prayer Team, Devo Team and write blog posts for The Connection. She is a fellow sinner saved by the grace of God and is an active member of LCBC Church in Waynesboro, PA where she serves on the worship team. She has a passionate desire given by the Holy Spirit to mentor and disciple other women. You can email her at email@example.com.