Culture

There is a remedy for that guilt you’re feeling

Senior Pastor Benny Ho, Faith Community Church // February 8, 2019, 10:00 am

Pastor Benny Ho- There is a remedy for guilt

Illustration: Christina Wong/ Thir.st

My wife and I have a friend who has lost an arm due to polio. She described for us a phenomenon called “phantom pain” which occurs in many amputees.

Even though the arm or leg is already amputated, the pain can still remain because the memory of the pain is lodged permanently in the brain ­– so much so that even when the limb in gone, the memory of the pain remains.

Christians can be gripped by guilt that comes out of the memory of their past sins or failures.

It never leaves them – crippling their ministry, their devotional life, and their relationships with others, robbing them of joy and peace; exactly like the “phantom pain.”

They end up grappling with guilt.

Satan knows that once we come under guilt and a sense of condemnation, we will literally be paralysed spiritually.

The book of Revelation identifies Satan as “the accuser of our brothers” (Revelation 12:10).

Making accusations is not just one of the pre-occupations of the devil. This is, in fact, his full-time job! We see him hurling accusations at both God and man right from the beginning of time.

Satan accuses God of trying to keep what is good to Himself instead of sharing it with man (Genesis 3:5). He accuses Job of loving God with ulterior motives (Job 1:9-10). He accuses the High Priest Joshua of his sinfulness (Zechariah 3:1). 

Why does Satan want to accuse us? Very simply, to make us feel guilty!

Satan knows that once we come under guilt and a sense of condemnation, we will literally be paralysed spiritually.

That is why he keeps using this weapon of accusation against the Church. And he will continue wielding it because the fulfilment of Revelation 12:10 is in the future.

Right up until the end of time, Satan will still be using this same weapon. It is therefore vital that we learn this scheme of the enemy and overcome it in Jesus’ Name!

TWO TYPES OF GUILT

There is a difference between conviction of sin and feelings of condemnation:

  • Conviction is objective but condemnation is subjective
  • Conviction is specific and leads to repentance. Condemnation is vague and leads to feelings of unworthiness
  • Conviction brings us to repentance. Condemnation brings about a sense of hopelessness and despair
  • Conviction comes from the Holy Spirit. Condemnation comes from the devil

What we need to understand is that both conviction and condemnation can result in guilt. There is therefore positive guilt and negative guilt.

Positive guilt comes from the conviction of the Holy Spirit. Negative guilt arises from the condemnation of the devil.

The guilt that comes from the conviction of the Holy Spirit must be removed through confession and repentance. The guilt that arises from the condemnation of the devil must be overcome and rejected in Jesus’ Name!

God’s remedy for guilt is not in denying, substituting, hiding, fighting or biting it. It is in testifying to what the Blood of Jesus has done for us!

“They (believers) overcame him (Satan) by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death.” (Revelation 12:11)

When we testify to what the Blood of Jesus has done for us – making us holy, perfect, righteous, just as if I did not sin – the accuser will have to flee in Jesus’ Name!

But in order to apply this remedy, we must know what the Word says about the Blood.

The guilt that comes from the conviction of the Holy Spirit must be removed through confession and repentance.

In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding (Ephesians 1:7).

The word redemption is best used in the context of slavery. We were once enslaved to Satan but Jesus paid the price to redeem us. And the price He paid was His own Blood.

Now we can be set free from Satan, now our sins can be forgiven, and now we are a redeemed people. The basis of our redemption is “in accordance with the riches of God’s grace” (Ephesians 1:7).

In other words, God’s grace make us rich! When God releases His grace, He does not do so in a miserly way. Rather, He lavishes it on us. In other words, He pours out His grace in abundance, like a father splurging on his children.

God is my Father

Yet God does not lavish on us like an indulgent father who mindlessly splurges on his children without thought. The Bible tells us that our Heavenly Father “lavished (His grace) on us with all wisdom and understanding.”

So let us boldly declare Ephesians 1:7: “In Him I have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of my sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that He lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding.”

Through the grace of God lavished on us, we can freely and boldly appropriate our redemption through the Blood of the Lamb shed for us on the Cross of Calvary. It is the complete propitiation for our sin and guilt.


This was an excerpt from Pastor Benny Ho’s book, “Managing Your Emotions”, and has been republished with permission. To find out more on overcoming negative emotions for a life of abundance, visit his resource page.