What is the heart of God like? Is He someone ready to judge or condemn us? An interesting impromptu discussion on Facebook about Romans 8:1 reveals some liberating truths about the source of condemnation – God is not the one condemning us – ever. It is our conscience that condemns us, and this is why Jesus came to cleanse our conscience from sin-consciousness and from religion. When we know this truth, we will experience the freedom to commune with God and embrace His love, and learn to love and accept ourselves and others.
It might seem a trivial point, yet it carries a lot of weight. Jesus said He came not to condemn the world…so if Jesus, who has the same heart of the Father and the Spirit, never came with condemnation, who does ?
Condemnation can come from our own conscience, from others, from Satan… that’s why renewing the mind is SO CRITICAL. I believe God’s mirror more than I believe the world’s mirror, THAT alone is what has enabled me to see the real truth and has radically transformed my life.
Yes ! God never condemns, never has and never will, He is not the source of condemnation. Our own heart, augmented by satan’s accusations is the source.
I brought this up because MANY christians have the idea that God sent Jesus to save us from His condemning, which paints a bizarre understanding of who God is (He sent His Son to save us from from Himself, which then means that the cross changed God, and this is not so, He is the same eternally, He is Love eternally, He is forever FOR us, not against us)
Our own hearts are released from condemnation when we realise His unconditional acceptance, and when we lose our self-condemnation, we then have confidence towards Him and receive the grace we need.
(Grace = the Divine influence on our hearts)
Satan accuses us to keep the condemnation in place, cause when we feel condemned, our confidence wanes, and His influence on our hearts is ineffective because WE close off/shut down.
Recently, whilst teaching a group of people, the majority thought that God was the source of condemnation, and that the cross lifted that condemnation. Sad 😦
Amen Colin, I was one of “those” Christians you’re referring to who thought God was keeping score on my deeds. My thinking was so warped… largely due to erroneous teachings of mixture, but also because I was trying to understand Scripture with my head, not my heart and spirit. I would read God’s Word and because I didn’t “see it” in the physical or “feel it” in my personal life, I thought I was doing something wrong.
It’s when you believe what God says WITHOUT a shadow of doubt, regardless of what you see in the physical, it is only a matter of time that you will see the spiritual manifest in the physical. Understanding the difference between the soul and spirit is also so very important. Our old man (spirit) was buried with Christ and is DEAD! We now have His Spirit, Glory to God. The soul however (our mind, feelings, thoughts, emotions, personalities, etc…) has to be renewed with the TRUTH (which is the Word of God). In 1 John 4:17 He says as Jesus is, so am I in this world. He says it, I believe it, therefore it is… period.
Condemnation NEVER comes from God! John 3:17 ~ For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Hallelujah, THAT is GOOD News! Woo-Hoo!
Question (…!): Which condemned is the Lord referring to in John 3:18 & 19? Or where does condemnation come from?
On God not ‘keeping score’, how would that concur with Matt 12:36 (“...But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgement“?)
I do understand the grace teaching because the teaching passed down by the Apostles incorporated grace, mercy, love, forgiveness, etc., in its fulness. Forgive me, my questions are not just to scratch but if there is something out there of which I’m unaware I like to know about it.
Joh 3:18 “He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe IS CONDEMNED ALREADY, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
This is exactly the point – the whole world, since Adam’s time, has lived in condemnation due to our own shame guilt (Adam, where are you, why are you hiding?)
Jesus’s sacrifice for us IS the way to not be under condemnation (satan has nothing to throw at us, and we ourselves by receiving His exchange, receive His blamelessness as ours so we do not condemn ourselves)
The word “Idle” in Matt 12:36 means “barren” – One’s own fruitlessness is the judgement of your life.
Words are what show to be in your heart, what’s in your heart will produce good fruit or nothing worth much (plastic apples if you will) – If your heart is not open to God’s love by grace, the fruit of your life will be a sad affair, and not worth much (even if it has a show of religiosity).
Mat 12:37 For by YOUR words you will be justified, and by YOUR words you will be condemned.”
John P Stolwyk:
….. who walk not after the flesh (man’s effort in keeping the law) but after the Spirit (He only backs up the gospel not man’s effort)
And this is the condemnation, that light (the gospel) is come into the world, and men loved darkness …(brought by the shadow of the law) rather than light, because their deeds were evil (Gk – full of labor or harrassed by labors). (John 3:19)
Hey Colin on the flip side –
For with God nothing is ever impossible and no word (Rhema) from God shall be without power or impossible of fulfillment.(Luke 1:37)
Every word you give me is a miracle word…………..(Psalm 119:129)
Right on John – and in this case Matt 12:36 Jesus was exposing the self righteous hearts of the Pharisees, and self-righteousness remains a barren land, yet those who live by the gift of righteousness, are fruitful, because fruit is by the Spirit, not by self righteousness (the whole Galatians story)
Rom 5:16 And the gift is not like the one who sinned. For judgment, resulting from the one transgression, led to condemnation, but the gracious gift from the many failures led to justification.
Rom 5:17 For if, by the transgression of the one man, death reigned through the one, how much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one, Jesus Christ!
John P Stolwyk:
Amen Colin: I have been meditating on the thought of submission in Rom 10:4 and that submssion is basically accepting God’s gift of righteousness and rebellion (like witchcraft Gal 3:1 cf 1Sa 15:2) is working for it!
Sure – true humility is to believe what God says about you – as Jesus is in this world so are you (not always an easy thing to lay down and accept, without wanting to jump up and prove your worth by “doing”) – but oh so liberating and fulfilling with contentedness and peace (that the world cannot give) when you do 🙂
The peaceable fruit of righteousness !! (not the barren desert of self-righteousness)
John P Stolwyk:
Amen – I hear you – sometimes “resting” is hard then I know I am not resting 🙂
A side note : (You’ve stirred some thoughts John)
Paul speaks of a man’s works being tried by fire ( Fire being God’s love, His Spirit), will they remain, or be burned (wood hay stubble), and works produced by self-righteousness will be burned, cause they are not Spirit initiated, Spirit led. To get to the core, they would be works of the “flesh” , and the root motivator of the flesh is fear, not love (can God approve a fear motivated initiative that feeds my lack ?)
From the overflow from receiving the abundance of Grace and the Gift of righteousness, works (fruit) of God are produced, and these works are of value.
John P Stolwyk:
Amen Colin: Gold Silver and Precious Stones. Gold speaks of Divinity, Silver of redemption and Precious stones the people of God as carried on the Ephod of the High Priest. So anything not finding its root in the Divine Redemption of the Ecclesia will not stand in the fire or presence of God.
Also thought of “dead works” death means (separation from) dead works are those separated from the life (grace) of God. Motivated, as you said by something other than Him.