The other day I read a post by a prominent Christian blogger that left me saddened and concerned. It reflected what I have come to see in recent months as a pervasive problem in segments of the church. I’m not linking to the post because I have no quibbles with this blogger. I am simply profoundly sad for this person and many others who were agreeing with the post.
Wallowing in sin.
No, I’m not talking about going out and purposely doing sinful things. I’m also not talking about choosing to do sinful things and continuing in the sin.
I’m referring to living in a mindset of sinfulness, constantly thinking the worst of yourself. Seeing yourself every day as this horrible sinner.
Questioning your every motive, every inclination of your heart. Being sure that there must be some horrible selfishness behind every action.
Constantly thinking that you aren’t measuring up to what Jesus did for you on the cross. He did so much and you are so wretchedly wicked and awful and selfish and on and on and on…
It is like there is an entire growing segment of the church that has the idea that we must live in the depressing awareness of our sins (past, present and future) all the time.
Jesus Christ did not die on the cross and rise from the dead so we can walk around in constant condemnation.
There is therefore no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. (Romans 8:1)
He came that we might have life and have it more abundantly. (John 10:10)
If the Son sets you free, you are free indeed. (John 8:36)
This introspective, self-flagellating focus on sin is just so wrong.
Yes, we will still sin. Yes, we should confess our sins. But our sins are remembered no more (Hebrews 8:12) and our sins should not define who we are each day.
Our identity should be in Christ.
Our focus should be on Christ, rejoicing in what He accomplished for us on the cross.
We are no longer slaves to sin. (Romans 6:6)
Are we to proclaim ourselves terrible sinners? Are we to parade our sins before others in a display of one-upmanship to show the world how we are truly wretched?
Are we to boast of our sin?
May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world. (Galatians 6:14)
We cannot boast of saving ourselves. Neither should we boast of our sinfulness after confessing our sins and recognizing Jesus as Savior and Lord.
We can never live up to what Jesus did on the cross. That is the whole point. We can never do enough for Him in comparison to what He did for us. To try to live up to what He did means that we think we can somehow repay Him for what He did. We cannot repay Him. And trying to do so by wallowing in our sinfulness is pointless.
Do we share the Good News of Jesus Christ with others? You know. The Good News that your sins are forgiven eternally, but you must continue to wallow in them in bondage here on earth?
What kind of Good News is it if we continue to beat ourselves up for our forgiven sin? What do we tell the lost? “Come to Jesus. You, too, can be miserable on earth even though you have been washed as white as snow (Isaiah 1:18).”
Dearly Beloved, you are loved and accepted by God. Wallow in your sin no more. Rejoice in your salvation. Walk in your freedom!