Over the years, I have heard an assortment of sayings that stand out on the tongues of teens and their parents who want to appear “cool.” We repeat those phrases even though we are unclear about their meaning.
Case in point, the phrase “Shut the Front Door!” is a statement of disbelief. “You got a raise? Shut the front door.” Yet, those familiar with the phrasing know that “front” substitutes the “F” word. “You got a raise? Shut the F— Up!” Yikes.
The one saying that irks me the most is, “You have to forgive yourself.” Says who? Forgiveness is an act that restores relationships and dissolves guilt. When you forgive yourself, you mend the harm you’ve done to your ego. It’s subjective.
In Mark 2, Jesus heals a paralytic and says, “Son, your sins are forgiven.” But the scribes sitting around him said, “Who can forgive sins, but God alone?” The scribes found Jesus’ statement blasphemous because they rejected his assertion and authority as God.
Because Jesus is holy, and there is no impurity in him. He is the one who can wash us clean because that cleansing occurs with the blood from the cross. Not only does Jesus wash away our sin, but he also removes the guilt and shame associated with it.
And, that is the good news. A heavy conscience is a sign that your heart is still in tune with God, and the conviction of the Holy Spirit rests upon you. Rejoice.
The world is eager to erase God so that they can suppress their guilt and normalize sin. Ephesians 5:6 says, “Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things, the wrath of God is coming on the sons of disobedience.”
If you suppress guilt and forgive yourself, the conscience will become desensitized to sin, and the gift of guilt will dissolve, removing all obstacles to wrongdoing. Therefore, to minimize sin is to reduce God to a paper dragon.
A repentant believer can rely on the cross of Jesus, which paid the penalty for sin. That freedom provides us the privilege to approach the throne of God and ask for forgiveness without judgment. Isaiah 43:25 says, “I am he who blots out your transgressions for my sake, and I will not remember your sins.” Thus, a believer who has given their life to Christ only asks God for forgiveness. He will wipe your tears away and give you the peace you desire.