Tag Archives: guilt

Have You No Shame?

An important element of the story of Adam and Eve is the moment when they realize that they are naked. They were both created by God, and they needed no clothing, for they were clothed in righteousness. They had nothing to be ashamed of—until they chose to disobey God.

The way the story is told in the Bible, it is clear that they felt no shame in their nakedness as long as Continue reading Have You No Shame?

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God Does Not Ignore Those Who Ignore Him

I am the Lord; that is my name;
my glory I give to no other.
Isaiah 42:8

Whether people love God, hate him, or deny his very existence, they should be aware of this fact: God does not ignore attempts to usurp his place.

The number of people who choose to deny that God exists grows daily. Likewise, the number who so trivialize God’s role in their lives that he might as well not exist. God is out of fashion Continue reading God Does Not Ignore Those Who Ignore Him

Innocent Blood

The author of the book of Hebrews wrote to people who were struggling to understand what it meant for them as Jews to recognize that Jesus was the Messiah promised when God said to Abraham, “All peoples on earth will be blessed through you” (Genesis 12:3 NIV). Toward the end of chapter 12, the author says, “You have not come to a mountain that cannot be touched,” referring to Sinai, the place where the nation of Israel was born.

At Sinai, God established his absolute righteousness in the minds and hearts of the descendants of Abraham. He enforced their respect for his righteousness by requiring them to keep their distance. He showed them the difference between himself and sinful humanity. He threatened them with death if they came near enough to touch the mountain on which he met Moses and wrote the Ten Commandments on stone tablets with his own finger. According to the man who penned the book of Hebrews, even Moses said, “I am trembling with fear” (Hebrews 12:21 NIV).

This same writer, however, comforts the Hebrew readers who are trying to understand how Jesus of Nazareth could be the Messiah by saying to them that instead of a mountain that nobody dares to touch, they may approach Mount Zion, because Jesus has mediated a new covenant in his own blood. Jesus, perfectly sinless, satisfied the righteousness of God in his own blood. Innocent of any wrongdoing, just like Abel, the first murder victim, the blood of Jesus cries out to God, just as Abel’s blood did. However, even though Abel was innocent when he was murdered, Abel was a sinful human being. His blood cried out his innocence, but his blood could not cleanse humans of sin, because Abel was as sinful as anyone else. Jesus, however, was not only innocent, but also sinless. The author of Hebrews says that Jesus is “the mediator of a new covenant,” and the sprinkled blood of Jesus “speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.”

Our world is, sad to say, filled with the sprinkled blood of innocent human beings. Every day, more babies are killed by abortion than were killed in the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. In the US alone, more than 3,000 babies die every day by abortion. That is a lot of innocent blood. While nobody says that babies are sinless like Jesus, it is obvious that they are innocent–as innocent as Abel. Their blood cries out for God’s judgment as surely as Abel’s blood did.

The blood of Jesus speaks a better word than Abel’s blood, and it certainly speaks a better word than the blood of innocent babies. Christ’s blood speaks of righteous cleansing and purification from sin and guilt. If 3,000 babies die every day by abortion, then 3,000 mothers are suffering from the guilt of those murders. Each person who performs even one of those abortions suffers the guilt of knowing that an innocent human being died at his or her hands during each abortion. Nurses, aides, and even receptionists know the mayhem in which they are participating, and if they ever stop to listen, the blood of those innocents will call out to them for God’s judgment.

The blood of Jesus, on the other hand, calls out for God’s forgiveness. The righteousness of God is poured out over every human being who chooses to receive forgiveness though Christ. The righteous blood of Christ can cleanse all mothers who have given up their babies to abortion, as well as abortionists, nurses, technicians and office staff who have participated in the murderous processes of abortion. The blood of Abel cried out, “I am innocent!” The blood of aborted babies cries out, “I am innocent!” The blood of Christ cries out, “God loves you. Come be cleansed of your guilt. Be purified. Be forgiven for the sin of shedding innocent blood.” At Sinai, the righteousness of God pushed the people away, lest they be destroyed by his righteousness. At Calvary, the righteousness of Christ pulls people toward him, in order to cleanse them of their unrighteousness. Sinful, guilt-ridden people, covered in the blood of innocent babies, can be cleansed of their guilt if they turn away from murder and choose life in Christ.

This is the better message spoken by the blood of Christ.

Why do Secular Thinkers feel so Guilty?

Secularists have been known to complain that Christians obsess about sin. They even complain that Christians tell children that they are sinful. Secular thinkers allege to believe that babies are pure and innocent when they are born, incapable of sin, incapable of desiring to sin. These are the same babies that secular thinkers claim have no rights, no personhood, not even the right to be called babies if they have not yet exited the womb. Furthermore, secular thinkers who refuse to give credence even to the concept of sin willfully execute those babies if the mother so chooses. The people who advocate for this method of managing pregnancy when it turns out to be inconvenient become violently angry when people who believe that a baby has a right to life offer to pray with or counsel with women approaching abortion clinics where they can have their babies killed on demand. Secularists say that abortion is not sin, and no woman should feel guilty for cleansing her womb of a parasite.

Secular thinkers engage in numerous behaviors that Christians consider to be sin, and Christians expect people to feel guilty if they engage in such behavior, but secular thinkers claim not to suffer any qualms about these behaviors.

For example, secular thinkers are advocating nationwide for the right for adults to die. It isn’t enough that they work very hard to protect the right to kill an unborn baby; they want born babies that live to adulthood to be free to kill themselves. That is what “right to die” means. In a few US states, legislation to this effect has been passed, and there are foreign countries where it is authorized as well. Adults claim to be in terminal depression, for example, or perhaps they have learned they are suffering from an incurable disease. The laws vary widely in terms of the rules for authorization of the “right to die,” but one and all they result in suicide. It is highly incongruous that secular thinkers want some people put on a “suicide watch” out of fear that those people will harm themselves, while others are put on the “right to die” watch, because they have legally declared that they will absolutely harm themselves.

It must be mentioned here that more than one doctor in various places around the world has declared that parents ought not to be expected to keep a child that is less than desirable, and they should not need to justify their lack of desire for the child. A surgeon in England said he could see no problem with parents trying out a child for six months and then ending the child’s life if the child were a nuisance, or ugly, or sickly, or just a pain. Other spokesmen have suggested a longer trial, and one is led to wonder when it will be determined that parents have the right to get rid of unwanted children of any age.

That would close the final gap in death coverage. That would mean that in the secular mind, from the moment of conception, through the time of birth, and all the way to the moment of legal adulthood, a parent has the right to execute any unwanted child. From the moment of adulthood onward, an adult has the right to kill himself (or herself) for a variety of reasons. As everyone knows, legal language is extremely malleable, and as long as the right to die is acknowledged as a universal human right, it should be very easy to justify the decision and make the whole process quite painless.

Is it any wonder that secular thinkers all suffer from endless guilt? Yes, they do. Nobody suffers as much guilt as secular thinkers.

Obviously, no human being could go around advocating a culture of death without suffering immense guilt. Every living being does one thing more energetically than anything else: defend its own life. Even though secular thinkers contend that a human being is nothing more than a highly organized biochemical machine, one wonders why a machine feels guilty when it causes the death of another human being. In fact, secularists rise to the occasion when someone sets off a bomb at race or blazes away with a gun in a prayer meeting. Why are they so outraged? In another moment, all those people might have declared that they no longer wanted to live anyway. This statement sounds crass to sane people, but when you set it alongside the right to abortion on demand, as long as the being to be aborted is under the legal age of contract, and the right to die for whatever reason, as long as the being to be killed is over the legal age of contract, then it sounds like nothing more than a simple, routine, legal process. Fill out the forms. Sign the papers. Terminate the protoplasm.

Secular thinkers desperately need some way to cover up the culture of death that they advocate. This is why they are busy saving the planet from global warming and species extinction. They have very little fodder for the graphs they use so religiously to tell them that human beings are burning up the planet. They cannot actually prove that anything has gone extinct. The discovery of coelacanths in the ocean, millennia after they were declared to have been extinct, completely abolishes the credibility of environmental campaigns to save tigers, elephants and snail darters from the supposed depredations of human beings. We now know that key scientists have doctored the data that supposedly proves global warming, and we don’t need to be told that data from a single petrified tree in Siberia cannot possibly prove global climate warming. These frauds puncture the balloon filled with allegations of humankind’s responsibility for climate change in any direction whatsoever. Secularists suffer from a hovering, smothering guilt that cannot be assuaged by simple argument or positive thinking. Secularists are suffocated by perceived expectations that they do something! Anything! Save the planet!

One way secularists celebrate life is by advocating that when two men marry and want children, all the stops should be pulled out in order to create a person they can claim as their child. This is one way that they claim to celebrate life.

They also celebrate life when a little girl of five declares that she has discovered she is really a boy. People get to be whatever gender comes to mind. There was a time when two genders covered everything. No longer. Now we need fifty genders for people who are experimenting and inventing and flipping back and forth among the variations. Secular thinkers know this way of thinking is ridiculous, uncomical, outrageous, and they feel guilty about playing with something so fundamental to our happiness and well-being as human beings.

How do we know that they feel guilty? Because they worry about every little thing more than they worry about something people want and need as much as they want and need life: liberty. Secular thinkers cannot allow anyone to have liberty any longer, because if people have liberty, they might say things other people do not want to hear. Things such as: “That is not true!” Things such as “God loves you.” Things such as, “Don’t try to make up some way to be offended. Nobody has done anything to you.”

Several months ago, I saw a statement online that declared that the right to exercise personal faith and the right to speak freely without being arrested were special privileges granted to citizens by the government. This is another problem secularists have. Because they do not acknowledge that God exists, they can hardly acknowledge that he grants liberty to human beings from the moment of conception. Yet the people who wrote the Constitution knew that God gave people life and liberty. The authors of the Constitution knew that God allowed people the freedom to choose the God they would serve. Those men knew that God gave people the freedom to speak and have opinions on everything. When they wrote the Constitution, they declared that the new government in North America would protect the rights God had already given to people rather than making a concerted effort to suppress or remove those rights.

Secular thinkers believe that those rights are gifts of the government, and they believe that the government has the right to restrict the boundaries of those rights. People have the right to speak–as long as they don’t say anything that offends the government. People have the right to exercise their religion–as long as the people don’t think their God is more important than government.

Secular thinkers are always on a guilt trip of some sort. They want people to feel guilty for saying things. They want citizens to feel guilty for thinking God’s will is more important than the government’s will. They see babies dying or worse, being dismembered for research while still alive, and they want the people who try to stop it to feel guilty for being at war with women. It is a terrible burden to be a secular thinker.

There is an answer to this guilt. The apostle Paul wrote about it in his letter to the Romans. Ancient Rome was a place where a secular thinker might feel right at home. Despite the so-called national religion, most Romans were very skeptical of both religion and politics. The ancient Romans suffered from just as much guilt as contemporary secular thinkers. Paul wrote to them with a message of hope. He said, “God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8 ESV) Paul was writing about the guilt the Roman Christians suffered. In fact, he told them that they could have “peace with God through [the] Lord Jesus Christ” (Romans 5:1 ESV) He even said, “While we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son” (Romans 5:10 ESV). The beautiful thing about this letter is that the news Paul sent to the Romans is just as fresh and true today. God, the God whom secular thinkers reject, does not reject them. Instead, he reaches out for them with loving arms, ready to wrap them in the love that cleanses and forgives all the guilty pains they suffer. In this letter, Paul wrote that not only does God take away the horror of all that guilt, but God also receives secular thinkers with love that can never be taken away. They worry that all the animals and plants are about to die off. They worry that the earth is about to burn up. Paul promises them what Paul promised to the Romans: “I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:38-39 ESV) Even if the plants wither, the animals die and the globe melts, they are safe in Christ’s love.

In the meantime, they have life with him both now and hereafter.

Secular thinkers can get rid of the guilt. They can stop trying to be the wrath of the god they don’t acknowledge to people who are guilty of a slip of the tongue or of the crime of thinking there are two genders. Secular thinkers can shrug off the weighty responsibility to be the world’s police–for speech, water use, and air quality. Christ will set them free to do the good works and great accomplishments for which they were created, and he will carry them guilt-free into eternity.

Secular thinkers really do not need to be so weighed down with guilt.

By Katherine Harms, author of Oceans of Love available for Kindle at Amazon.com. Watch for Thrive! Live Christian in a Hostile World to be released during winter, 2016. 

A Verse For Meditation

Torah ScrollSince we are justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Romans 5:1

  • Can you remember a time when you felt desperate for peace? Why did you not feel the peace of Christ? What brought that peace back to you?
  • Do you ever feel confused about what is right and then do the thing you know was wrong because …? What do you do about that when you finally admit to yourself that you did the wrong thing for the wrong reason? What does this verse promise you with regard to your failure? What do you do about your failure?
  • When you listen to the news, it always contains reports of someone’s wrong-doing. Do you ever worry about the peace of the wrong-doer? 
  • Government leaders at all levels are sometimes guilty of doing the wrong thing for wrong reasons. When the wrong-doing becomes known, they may confess or they may resist discovery to the end. How do you feel about their wrong-doing? Do you think their wickedness is different from your wickedness in some way? What is the difference between being justified before God through the blood of Christ and being responsible to make amends or endure punishment at the hands of human justice?
  • Have you ever escaped human justice for a wrong you know you did? What did you do about it? When you have peace with God over your wrong-doing, how does that affect your actions to reconcile or amend or make good a wrong you have done?

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