Don’t listen to the accuser!
Then I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, “Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down.” Revelation 12:10
Do you ever feel like you’re not good enough? Do you feel like you aren’t the mother, father, Christian, friend etc. that you should be? We often feel this way because there is an accusation against us. This accusation can come from our own minds or from the mouths of others, but ultimately the one who accuses us is Satan.
Many Christians mistakenly believe that it is God who judges them as unworthy or not good enough. However,that is not what the Bible tell us.
“Who shall bring a charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is he who condemns? ” Romans 8:33,34
God is the One who has come to fulfil the law on our behalf and remove the stain of sin from us, so it doesn’t make sense that He would then also accuse us of our failures. When we receive Jesus as our Saviour and Lord, our sin is not counted against us. Jesus stood before Father God guilty of our sin so that we could stand before Father God innocent of every charge.
If God has declared us innocent, who is it that is condemning us? Well, either we are condemning ourselves or we are listening to the accusations of Satan against us.
John 8:3–11 tells the story of a woman caught in the act of adultery. The religious leaders brought this woman to Jesus and reminded Him of the law which stated that she should be stoned for her sin. Jesus reveals the heart of the Father towards sinners when He says, “Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more” (verse11).
Even before Jesus had paid the price for this woman’s sin on the cross, He did not condemn her. What are the things that make you feel condemned? Whatever they are, the blood of Jesus is more powerful in its cleansing power than your sin is in its defiling power.
Holding onto our guilt and shame isn’t what pleases God. We are choosing to not receive His gift, and we are not walking in faith. Hebrews 11:6 states, “But without faith it is impossible to please Him.”
Sometimes we hold onto our guilt because we have an underlying belief that somehow the guilt will help us change and become better people. The truth is that it doesn’t work that way. It is the Holy Spirit, not the spirit of condemnation, that empowers us to be Christlike. When we let go of the guilt and shame, we have a new capacity to receive from God and come close to Him. It is His presence which transforms us, not our guilt.
There was a vast difference between the behaviour of the Children of Israel and Moses. The Children of Israel kept displeasing God; they didn’t trust Him, complained against Him and built other idols to worship. They continually went astray, whereas Moses had a heart after God. Moses didn’t need to fast and pray to discover that the golden calf was an offence to God; he knew the ways of God and walked in holiness.
One of the main differences between Moses and the Children of Israel, in their relationship with God, was that Moses spent time in the Presence of God. He drew close to God when the Children of Israel drew back. I believe that we are transformed in our hearts through times of intimacy with the Presence of God. The closer we come to Him and the more time we spend in His presence will determine much about how we live our lives.
The Spirit of God imparts knowledge, wisdom and love in our hearts as we spend time with Him. As the intimacy in our relationship with God grows and we are more able to draw close to Him, He reveals the things that hinder us in a gentle and loving way.
The accusations of the enemy leave us feeling unworthy, unlovable and distant from God, whereas the gentle conviction of the Holy Spirit draws us towards an answer. When the Holy Spirit shows you something, you see the answer rather than your sin. He puts the focus on the negative effect of your behaviour and on what needs to change. The accuser will try to make you believe you are a failure and and that you don’t measure up. When God is drawing us to change, we receive the motivation and ability along with the conviction. Although we may feel sorrow for the hurt our behaviour has caused, it will not cause us to feel disconnected from God.
It is possible to be under the accusation of Satan and not realise it. The accusing thoughts in our head can sound something like “you’re an idiot for doing that,” “you’re not a good mother,” “you don’t read your Bible enough,” and “a real Christian wouldn’t do that.” This type of thinking leaves us feeling like we’re just not good enough.The accusations may be factual in the sense that we don’t measure up to the requirements of the law of God, but they are false because we are righteous due to what Jesus has done on our behalf, regardless of our shortcomings.
I once had a counselling client say to me, “But they’re true,” when talking about the ongoing stream of accusations which filled her head each day. My response was “JESUS is THE TRUTH.” What Jesus did overrides whatever truth there may be to the accusations against us.
If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.–1John 1:9
We do not have to remain under the heavy weight of condemnation and accusation. Once we confess our sins and shortcomings to God, we can walk free from the guilt and shame and know that Father God sees us as holy and righteous. Jesus exchanged records with us–we received His perfect history and He took our “less than perfect” history. He paid an incredibly high price to give us this wonderful gift of righteousness, lets ensure that we receive it fully and walk in the joy of it.