Conviction Or Condemnation?

Q. Your site is fascinating! First of all,I am a Hungarian girl,so,sorry for my bad English!

I have problem with the following verses: Matthew 6:14 says: “For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.”

Also Luke 6:37-38. I have a serious struggle with forgiving from my heart. Don’t feelings matter at all? I want to forgive from my heart, and asked God for help, but I feel condemned because of my wrong feelings toward the respective person. And this judging thing…I see what a grave sin judging is, but for me it’s like a bad thinking habit! I struggle with it too!

Luke 6:38 says: “…for with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” It means God is less compassionate (or absolutely not compassionate) toward such people who struggle with that sin? I read something where the author said God hates double standards. I understand it but this all is frightening!

Moreover it looks like He insists that somebody with the above mentioned sins risk his salvation. He doesn’t declare it, but it felt like that’s what He’s insisting. I used to believe in OSAS but it’s startling. What do you think of it? Is Godless compassionate to such people?

Finally: I read “Why can’t I stop sinning” and your answer shook me. You say guilty feelings are from Satan? I mean, when I feel condemned and that God frowns at me is that always from the Devil? And the Holy Spirit never condemns us? Thank you for your answers!

A. There are two facets to our relationship with God. I call one Union. It comes from our belief and brings our eternal salvation, which can never be withdrawn. The other one is Fellowship. It’s maintained by our behavior and brings us the blessings we receive here on Earth. This flow of blessing can be interrupted by our failure to confess when we sin because sin separates us from God.

In the Eternal sense our sins were all handled at the cross, guaranteeing our salvation (Union), but while we’re still on Earth we have to confess when we sin to stay in fellowship with God. (1 John 1:9) In the Matt. 6 passage we’re being told that our failure to forgive means that we’re still angry, which is a sin. (Ephes. 4:26) As long as we’re sinning, God can’t forgive us and we’ll be out of fellowship. We’re still saved, but may be deprived of blessings we would have otherwise received.

You don’t need to wait till you feel like forgiving someone. You can do it as an act of obedience. Ask the Lord to forgive you for your anger as you ask Him to forgive the person who has angered you. He will help you get rid of your anger and restore you to fellowship.

There are two feelings we can experience after we’ve sinned. One is conviction and the other is condemnation. Conviction is from the Holy Spirit, prompting us to confess and be restored to fellowship so God can continue to bless us. Its purpose is to draw us closer to God. Condemnation is from Satan, trying to convince us that we’re no good, and that God will never forgive us. It’s purpose is to keep us away from God by making us feel guilty.

As soon as we confess our sins, we’re forgiven and the sin is forgotten as God immediately purifies us from all unrighteousness. Any bad feelings we have after that are feelings of guilt that come from Satan.

So if you’re being drawn closer to God, you’re feeling the conviction of the Holy Spirit. But if you feel like hiding from God and begin to doubt His love for you, you’re feeling condemnation from the devil. Rebuke those feelings in the name of Jesus. Resist the devil and he’ll flee from you.

God knows every sin you ever have or ever will commit, and He loves you enough to die for you anyway. There’s nothing you can ever do to cause Him to change His mind about you. (Romans 8:38-39)

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