I woke up with the chorus to Calvary Covers It All: Calvary covers it all, My past with its sin and stain; My guilt and despair Jesus took on Him there, And Calvary covers it all. How does guilt affect our thoughts? Joseph’s brothers are a great example. Genesis 42:21 says, “Then they said to one another, We are truly guilty concerning our brother, for we saw the anguish of his soul when he pleaded with us, and we would not hear; therefore this distress has come upon us.”
Joseph was 17 when his brother sold him to the Ishmaelites. He was 30 when they faced him as the second in command in Egypt . For 23 years they bore their guilt. They ‘saw’ his anguish, but they would not ‘hear’ his pleading. Sin blocks our sensitivity. James 4:17 revealed the root. It says, “Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin.”
Jesus rebuked the Pharisees for their hypocrisy. Matthew 23:23 says, “…These you ought to have done, without leaving the others undone.” What have you not done that you should have? What have you ignored in your life that lines your heart with guilt? You see, unresolved guilt becomes an internal stronghold, erected by the enemy because of your disobedience to God’s instructions through His word.
Romans 2:15 says that God”s law is written in our heart. We are born with a conscience. Our conscience tells us when we are right or wrong through sensory signals in our nervous system. When guilt first hits what do we do? There is a cringe inside, because the guilt just hit our conscience. 1 Timothy 1:5 says, “The purpose of the commandment is love from a pure heart, from a good conscience, and from sincere faith.”
Paul then explained to Timothy what he meant if he digressed. In verse 6 it says, “From which some, having strayed, have turned aside to idle talk.” The Strong’s defines ‘idle’ as futile talk, worthless, empty, meaningless babble, and idle prattle.” What a perfect description of negative dialogue that brings entanglement in our thought processes. A guilty person does everything to skirt the issue. They use lies or ways to deflect. That is hypocrisy.
The truth is in the cross. Jesus paid for ALL our sins. All means our past, present, and future sins. 2 Peter 1:9 says, “For he who lacks these things…” What things? Verses 5-7 give us a list of things that we are to add to our faith: virtue, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly kindness, and love. Verse 8 says, “For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren for unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
However, if we lack these things, verse 9 goes on to say, that we are shortsighted, “…even to blindness, and has forgotten that he was cleansed from his old sins.” Before we were born, before we ever had a chance to sin, Jesus bore our sins on the cross. He took our place. He paid our full debt so that we might become partakers of His nature.
Buried guilt is a stressor that can destroy your health. Guilt is one consequence of disobedience. When the Lord says ‘do’ and we ‘don’t’ that is disobedience. May we all be sensitive to the moving of the Holy Spirit in our lives. The first pang of guilt is like the red light on your vehicle’s dashboard. It means that something is wrong and you need to check it out. Guilt is the ‘warning light’ that we have sinned against God. Instead of ignoring the Holy Spirit’s conviction through our conscience, we need to heed Him. A sound mind is free of entanglements.