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Your Forgiveness of Yourself

Brian Mashburn

April 14, 2019

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Your Forgiveness of Yourself

Self-hatred is a real thing. It comes in many forms, with different degrees of intensity, anywhere from self-disappointment to self-condemnation. It is often described as guilt, shame, self-loathing, diminishment, or "beating myself up." Whatever phrase it hides behind, it is a real thing. In many cases, it is subtle enough that the person doing it does not even know it, and would deny it if it was pointed out, choosing to call it "being realistic about myself," and Christians will go as far as to call their self-hatred the virtue of humility.

This is where the idea of forgiving ourselves comes in.

Would you be surprised to hear that the Bible says nothing about this idea of forgiving ourselves? I am not. Why? Because if you accept the message of scripture, that God forgives you, you cannot then go over God's head, take the judgement seat for yourself, and not forgive yourself. For those who trust God's love, believe in the mission of Jesus, and allow the Holy Spirit to live inside of them, the idea of disagreeing with God on anything is nothing short of prideful. This includes when we condemn ourselves when God does not.

I wish it were as easy as that. It is a simple truth, but it is not an easy application. So today, we walk into our inclination to punish ourselves for our sins, even if we "believe" that God does not. We will walk into the fear that says, "If everyone knew - really knew - what kind of sinner I am, they would understand that I must pay for my sin, and if God will not do it, then I will."

While scripture does not speak directly of self-forgiveness, it does speak directly to it. The greatest command lists three loves, not two, when it says to love God, and love others as you love yourself. How are you doing on that third one?

Brian Mashburn

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