As a Christian, we experience the presence of guilt when we sin or do something bad. After fallen into the temptation, we start having this condemnation thought in us that God is angry and whatever we have asked will not be answered.
I was surfing through my old notes and saw one of Joyce Meyer’s writing about this particular subject.
“How much time do you waste feeling bad about yourself? Whatever amount of time it is, it is too much! Even if you are not where you want to be in your walk with God, you don’t have to feel guilty and ashamed. You can rejoice that you have made some progress. Jesus, who began a good work in you, will continue developing and perfecting His work in you right up until the day of Christ’s return. When the devil attacks you with guilt and shame, you can say, “I may not be where I need to be, but thank God I am not where I used to be! God is working in me right now, and each day I improve!”
My friend, your problems are not the root. When you go through an evil day, you are like a sickly plant with sick leaves. You may have leaves of sickness, poverty, a broken marriage or depression in your life. But these are just the leaves. These are just the manifestations of the root. It would be foolish to attack the leaves because they are not the cause of your problems. We all know that there’ll be no leaf if there is no root.
Joseph Prince in one of his preaching discussed something similar in dealing with the spirit of condemnation.
When there’s condemnation, there’ll be fear. When there’s fear, there’s going to be stress. And when there’s stress, there’ll be manifestations of the curse.
Now, if you disagree with me that the root cause is condemnation, let me refer you to Genesis, the book of beginnings.
Do you know that Adam was planted in the midst of a finished work? Everything was prepared for him. But the devil told him that he needed to do something to qualify for all the things he had already qualified for. The devil gave him a mistaken identity. He said, “You will not surely die. For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” (Genesis 3:4–5)
The truth is that Adam was already like God! But Adam believed the devil, ate the fruit and fell. And the curse came.
Before there was poverty, sickness and death in Adam’s life, there was stress. How do we know that? Well, God said, “In the sweat of your face you shall eat bread…” (Genesis 3:19) And sweat speaks of stress and self-effort.
But if you go deeper, you will find that there was fear. Do you know what Adam said to God when God asked him where he was? He said, “I heard Your voice in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; and I hid myself.” (Genesis 3:10) Adam was afraid. He was fearful. So the deeper root of stress is fear. But before he was fearful, he felt condemned.
The deepest root of all is condemnation.