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6 Ways to Cast Off Shame

If you were at epikos church on Sunday January 24th, I preached a sermon from Hebrews 10:19-23 entitled “Drawing Near to God.”  If you’d like to hear the full message you can listen to it here, or download the App to listen to it on your iPhone or Android device.  The big idea from the passage was that because of what Jesus accomplished on the cross we can Draw Near to God: Without Fear, Without Shame, and Without Doubt. lightstock_163361_xsmall_tim_evans Knowing that many believers still lug around shame, even though they are forgiven, I offered up 6 ways for believers to cast off shame from past sin.  This is NOT meant to serve as some trite  and over simplified 6 step process that you work through in a week and voila you’re shame free.  Instead, see this as part of the life long process of understanding forgiveness  your identity in Christ.

  1. Fully own your past sins. This may seem counter intuitive because it requires going back and drumming up old junk, maybe even feels like ripping a bandaid off old wounds. The key is to go back and fully own the depth of what you’ve done and the sin that you’ve committed.  Our tendency is to minimize or justify our sin, and ironcially that is what can keep us in a place of shame.  Rationalizing our sin will not bring resolution, but acknowledging it for what it is, is often the first step towards casting off sin.
  2. Confess your sin to God. I’ve got a secret for you. When you confess your sins to God you will not shock or surprise Him. He already knows!  A simple understanding of confession is agreement with God.  So you are essentially agreeing and aligning with what God desires and expresses in His Word about how we are to live our lives.
  3. Confess your sin to others. This can be a hard step. But, when you find someone or some people you trust, this is a powerful step to cast off shame. We’re called in scripture to live in the light with our brothers and sisters in Christ.  James 5:16 says “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. “
  4. If you have sinned against someone, ask for their forgiveness.   Not all sin we commit is against another person.  However, if you are carrying shame around with you sometimes a huge step (and very biblical one) is to ask the person to forgive you for the offense that you have committed against them.  My only disclaimer is that even if you confess your sin to them and ask for forgiveness doesn’t mean that they will forgive you.  It’s in your control to ask, its out of your control how they will respond.  Even with this risk, it can be an important step in casting off shame.
  5. Memorize A Scripture to combat the lies of Satan. I believe a tactic of Satan that we often overlook is his ability to lie about our position and standing with God. Satan doesn’t need to keep us sinning, he simply needs to rub our nose in the sins of our past to have us experience shame to make us feel alienated  and isolated from God.  I suggested memorizing Romans 8:1 “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”  It’s short and simple and can combat the lie that you are still under God’s judgement.  
  1. Replace shame with worship. This may seem cliché but I think the more focus we put on God and His greatness it takes away focus from our past.  Worship can be done in your car listening to worship music, it can be taking a jog and dedicating that time to pray, or even just grabbing a cup of coffee to read your bible and journal about what’s going on in your heart and mind.  Of course, worshiping God in the context of the gathering of the local church is awesome.  Today I was struck by one of the worship songs that the worship team had selected, as it was PERFECT for this entire passage and what we learned from God’s Word.

Before the Throne of God Above (by Sovereign Grace Worship)

VERSE 1
Before the throne of God above
I have a strong and perfect plea
A great High Priest whose name is love
Who ever lives and pleads for me
My name is graven on His hands
My name is written on His heart
I know that while in heav’n He stands
No tongue can bid me thence depart
No tongue can bid me thence depart

VERSE 2
When Satan tempts me to despair
And tells me of the guilt within
Upward I look and see Him there
Who made an end of all my sin
Because the sinless Savior died
My sinful soul is counted free
For God the Just is satisfied
To look on Him and pardon me
To look on Him and pardon me

VERSE 3

Behold Him there, the risen Lamb
My perfect, spotless Righteousness
The great unchangeable I AM
The King of glory and of grace
One with Himself, I cannot die
My soul is purchased by His blood
My life is hid with Christ on high
With Christ my Savior and my God
With Christ my Savior and my God

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One Comment

  1. Thank you for sharing these Pastor Danny. This is one of my favorite worship songs. The lyrics really hit home so that every time I hear it, it brings tears to my eyes. I also keep this list of scriptures to turn to for encouragement to combat the lies of Satan and to remind myself of my true identity in Christ.
    —————————————————————————-
    Who you are in Christ:

    Because you are in Christ, EVERY ONE of these statements is true of you.

    I am loved. 1 John 3:3
    I am accepted. Ephesians 1:6
    I am a child of God. John 1:12
    I am Jesus’ friend. John 15:14
    I am a joint heir with Jesus, sharing His inheritance with Him. Romans 8:17
    I am united with God and one spirit with Him. 1 Corinthians 6:17
    I am a temple of God. His Spirit and his life lives in me. 1 Corinthians 6:19
    I am a member of Christ’s body. 1 Corinthians 12:27
    I am a Saint. Ephesians 1:1
    I am redeemed and forgiven. Colossians 1:14
    I am complete in Jesus Christ. Colossians 2:10
    I am free from condemnation. Romans 8:1
    I am a new creation because I am in Christ. 2 Corinthians 5:17
    I am chosen of God, holy and dearly loved. Colossians 3:12
    I am established, anointed, and sealed by God. 2 Corinthians 1:21
    I do not have a spirit of fear, but of love, power, and a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7
    I am God’s co-worker. 2 Corinthians 6:1
    I am seated in heavenly places with Christ. Eph 2:6
    I have direct access to God Ephesians. 2:18
    I am chosen to bear fruit John. 15:16
    I am one of God’s living stones, being built up in Christ as a spiritual house. 1 Peter 2:5
    I have been given exceedingly great and precious promises by God by which I share His nature. 2 Peter 1:4
    I can always know the presence of God because He never leaves me Hebrews. 13:5
    God works in me to help me do the things He wants me to do Philippians 2:13
    I can ask God for wisdom and He will give me what I need. James 1:5

    Simply choose to believe what God says about you.

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