Is God Punishng Me?

Q. I am in my mid 20’s and am struggling with sexual immorality. I truly believe in my heart that I want to live a life of obedience to the Lord which is pleasing to him. At the same time, I am single and I feel my struggles are directly due to me being alone. I have always believed there was somebody out there that I was meant to be with, but I fear that because of my struggles, the Lord may withhold her from me or withhold any other blessings from me as well.

A. Yours is a good example of how behavioral problems can lead to a spirit of fear and confusion about our relationship with God.  So let’s set the record straight. Knowing the end from the beginning, God knew every sin of your life before He sent His Son to die for you.  None of your sins surprise Him, or anger Him, or make Him wish He hadn’t saved you.  Jesus took the punishment that was due you for all of them, allowing God to live at peace with you from the first moment you were saved (Colossians 1:19-20).  Now all that’s required is that you confess when you sin to purify you from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9).

If we don’t confess when we sin our relationship with God can feel strained because of our guilt. It doesn’t affect our salvation, but it does give Satan a chance to torment us.  One way he does that is to convince us that we deserve to be punished. Then if something bad happens, we think it must be God punishing us.  But God cannot punish us for our sins because He already punished His Son.  See the problem?

If your behavior is making you feel bad, it’s because you know it’s wrong.  Confess, receive God’s forgiveness, and ask for His strength to help you instead of relying on your own will power.  Paul said, “I can do everything through Him who gives me strength” (Phil 4:13).  Once you take the emphasis off your own weakness and focus on your belief in the Lord’s strength and His forgiveness, you’ll find that you don’t slip nearly as often.

“For God did not give us a spirit of fear, but a spirit of power, of love, and of self-discipline” (2 Tim. 1:7).

 

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