No More Condemnation Pt. 1
No More Condemnation Pt. 1
Ever since I allowed Christ to enter my life the devil has used condemnation to keep me in bondage. I knew the scripture, Romans 8:1, but I didn’t exactly know what condemnation was and how to identify it and receive freedom from it.
The following teaching is from one of the best books ever, How to Succeed at Being Yourself, by Joyce Meyer. This has freed me from so many things and a big one is condemnation.
Ladies I pray it does the same for you. Your journey to freedom starts now!!!
“In order to be bold one must be confident. We have established that confidence is vital to success. Everyone desires to be confident, and yet many people, perhaps even most people have serious problems in this area. Why? There are many possible reasons: an abusive past, a poor self-image, ignorance of the love of God, rejection from family and peers,etc. But I believe one of the biggest reasons is condemnation.
WHAT IS CONDEMNATION?
Romans 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. NKJV
In Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible the Greek word translated condemnation in this verse means an ‘adverse sentence’.
Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words tells us the Greek noun krima translated condemnation ‘denotes (a) the sentence pronounced, a verdict, a condemnation, the decision resulting from an investigation.’
The word translated condemn in various New Testament Scriptures means to ‘note against, i.e., find fault with- blame;’ ‘judge against;’ ‘pronounce guilty;’ ‘punish, damn.’
In the light of Romans 8:1, does this sound like the kind of activity we Christians ought to be engaged in–especially against ourselves?
EXCESSIVE SELF EXAMINATION
2 Corinthians 13:5 Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?… NKJV
The Bible tells us to examine ourselves, and I wholeheartedly agree that we need to do so. We should examine ourselves to see if we have sin, and if so we should sincerely repent, then move on to living without that sin in our lives.
There is a great difference between examination and condemnation. Examination helps us to prove to ourselves that we are in Christ and He is in us, and that in Him we have been set free of sin. Condemnation keeps us mired in the very sin we feel condemned about. It does not deliver us-it traps us! It weakens us and saps all our spiritual strength. We give our energy to feeling condemned rather than living righteously.
There is a such thing as excessive self-examination, and I personally believe it opens the door for much of the unbalance we see today in the area among God’s children.
To be overly introspective and continually examining our every move opens a door for Satan. In the past I experienced multiple problems in this area, and I know for a fact that you and I cant succeed at being ourselves until the problem is dealt with thoroughly and completely.
I can remember finding something wrong with almost everything I did. Either Satan accused me, or I made his job easy and did it to myself. If I spent time with friends, after I left them I always found something wrong that I had said or done. Then I began the cycle of guilt, those feelings of condemnation which always follow investigation and bring adverse judgment. I call it a cycle because when we allow this kind of bondage into our lives, it repeats itself over and over again. We no sooner get over one incident than another one comes up.
If I prayed, I never felt that I had prayed right or long enough. If I read my bible, I felt I should have read more, or perhaps a different section. If I read a book that God was using to help me at the time and did not read my bible first, then I felt condemned because I ‘probably should have read my bible first and not a book’. If I went shopping, I felt condemned because I spent money or bought something that was not a desperate need. If I ate, I felt that I had eaten too much or the wrong things. If I enjoyed any type of entertainment, I felt that I should have been working.
Although some of these feelings were vague, they were none the less tormenting and debilitating. They were destroying my confidence and I firmly believe Satan is using the same type of warfare to destroy many other people’s confidence.
My husband never went through these types of things. He hardly ever felt guilty. He simply dealt with issues in his life through prayer, repentance and believing the Word of God. He did not feel guilty when he made mistakes, and I could not understand that at all. I don’t mean that he wasn’t repentant–he was repentant, but he didn’t feel condemned and guilty. He knew the difference between conviction and condemnation, and I did not.
He did not sit around and examine himself all day long. There were times when I told him, ‘Dave, you should not have talked to those people in that tone of voice. You may have hurt their feelings.’ His response would be, ‘Joyce, I was not trying to hurt their feelings–I was simply expressing myself. If they got hurt, its their fault not mine.’
In such instances, he did not sense any conviction in his heart. As far as he knew, his heart was right, and he did not believe he should spend his life being responsible for everyone else’s emotional reactions and personal hang-ups.
This does not mean that Dave doesn’t care about people. He cares very much, but he is not going to let other people’s hypersensitivity and insecurity control him. He will pray for them, but he will not be controlled by them.
THAT IS TRUE FREEDOM!
I on the other hand, lived with a false sense of responsibility. I not only felt overly responsible for everything I did or even may have done wrong, but I also felt responsible for how everyone else responded. In my ministry to others there were numerous times when I found myself dealing with insecure, emotionally wounded people. My bold straight forward personality and their wounds did not mix well. I would be myself and they would get terribly offended. When I realized that something was wrong I would feel condemned.
I would feel and think: ‘ I did not act right, they got hurt and its all my fault, I have to change etc. I always thought something was wrong with me–it was always me!
My husband had a balanced perspective on these issues. He did not want to hurt people, yet at the same time he knew he could not be something he wasn’t. He realized that the world is full of all kinds of people and not all would respond favorably. He knew if he made himself responsible for all their reactions to him, it would steal from him the life that Jesus died to provide.
This does not mean we can treat people any way we feel like treating them and just blow them off saying, ‘ If they have a problem that’s their fault.’ If God convicts us of wrong behavior we should repent and let Him help us change our ways. But if their is no conviction from God and we are simply receiving satanic condemnation through our own lack of confidence, then we must stand against those things or we will be in a spiritual prison all our life.
After years of agony, I finally experienced freedom in these areas. Strongholds that have been embedded in our lives for a long time don’t always come out quickly. We have to keep seeking our freedom and refuse to quit until we see the breakthrough God promises in His word. We must learn to listen to our heart and not our head and feelings. Dave listened to his heart and that is why he was enjoying life and I was not.”
Wow, her whole testimony was my life. I hope you have more insight concerning your own life and how to defeat the devil and live in freedom.
STAY TUNED for Pt.2 as she explains the difference between Conviction and Condemnation!
No More Condemnation Pt.2
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