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Monday, March 11, 2024

The Truth of His Righteousness



For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. 

—John 3:17



Some of the enemy’s most powerful weapons are emotional. Fear, doubt, anger, resentment, worry, and guilt are parts of his scheme. Long-lasting guilt and shame are debilitating. They can torment you even after receiving Jesus' forgiveness and accepting His merciful grace.


Many Christians attribute the condemnation they experience to the Holy Spirit convicting them. There is no condemnation in Jesus. He didn’t come to condemn us. He came to save us. But when we focus on our failures instead of on Jesus' work of righteousness in us, we become consumed with ourselves. We have no power within ourselves. We find ourselves defeated by one of the most lethal weapons in Satan’s arsenal. It is low self-esteem. 


Believers who have low self-esteem, deal with a heart that condemns them, reminding them over and over again of their failures (1 John 3:20). They live out of the gut-wrenching feelings of inadequacy, inferiority, and low self-worth. The enemy’s most deadly weapon of low self-esteem imprisons many believers despite knowing God’s Word. They live in bondage to a deep sense of unworthiness instead of living in Christ’s freedom from it. Without believing in their hearts the righteous worth Jesus has credited to them, they have no defense against the lies of unworthiness with which the enemy bombards them. 


Consider two ways this deadly weapon brings defeat and failure into your life. 


1.    Low self-esteem destroys your potential.


Through many years, I have witnessed the devastating impact of feelings of inadequacy, inferiority, and low self-esteem in believers. These are Christians who live in paralyzing fear just waiting for God’s wrath and punishment—Christians who compulsively strive to prove to God they are worthy of His love and approval—Christians who without the Word of faith in their heart live in condemnation from which Jesus has saved them. It is heartbreaking to witness the loss of their potential, to witness their bondage to the lies of the enemy and self-condemnation, and to see the wasted gifts of God’s power and opportunity in their lives.


God is heartbroken when you don’t believe the gift of righteousness that has been given to you in the precious blood of His Son. The loss of your potential through the enemy’s lie of low self-worth can keep you in fear of failure, the fear of man, and the fear of rejection. God has a plan for your life. When you don’t believe God can use you because you aren’t good enough to be used, the cost to you and to His purpose in your life is devastating.


All Christians have to deal with feelings of unworthiness. Some overcome these more successfully than others. The ones who overcome know who they are in the love of God in Christ. They don’t have to prove their value to God. They know Jesus proved it to Him. They know God doesn’t count their sins against them. He counted their sins against Jesus. They don’t beat themselves up trying to win God’s acceptance. Jesus has given them peace in their relationship with God. No condemnation stands in the way. They freely receive God’s acceptance and love.


Jesus told a parable about the talents in Matthew 25:14-30. The man with one talent was rendered powerless from fear and feelings of inadequacy. Because he was so afraid of failure, he didn’t invest his talent. He buried it. He was frozen by the fear of rejection from his master, immobilized by the fear of failure, restrained by the fear of taking a risk, and defeated by the fear of comparison to the two other men. He did what most people with low self-esteem do. He did nothing. That is what Satan wants for you. He wants you frozen and paralyzed and doing nothing. He wants you to live far beneath your potential. 


2.    Low self-esteem destroys your dreams.


We can’t live in our dreams, but we do live by our dreams. Joel prophesied that when the Spirit was poured out, the young would see visions and the old would dream dreams. This prophecy was fulfilled at Pentecost. The Holy Spirit helps us to dream and see courageous visions of what God wants to do in and through us. But without a good vision of yourself, the wrong kind of self-defeating vision plays repeatedly in your heart.


Romans 1:21 says you can become “vain” in what you imagine. Something you envision that is “vain” is useless. If you believe you are useless, you are in bondage to the curse of condemnation.  The Holy Spirit is always trying to give you a powerful vision of the potential God sees in you, but until you know your worth in Jesus Christ, you will not see it.


Jesus redeemed you from the curse of the Law by becoming a curse for you (Galatians 3:13). The Law condemned you because you couldn't keep it perfectly. But Jesus perfectly paid the full price for your unworthiness. He redeemed you. You have no reason to feel inadequate. You have no reason to think you aren’t good enough to invest your talents and gifts. Jesus has made you worthy. You have to believe and live it by faith. Don’t nurse your feeling of inadequacy. Don’t nurse the guilt and shame that condemns you. Jesus didn’t come to condemn you. He died for your condemnation. And you have new life in Him. 


The righteousness that is yours in Jesus is one of the most powerful truths in God's arsenal. His righteousness presents you without fault to the Father. His righteousness has overcome condemnation. When you believe you are the righteousness of God in Christ, you aren't immobilized by the fear of rejection. You see yourself with God's vision instead of the unworthiness you have seen in yourself. You invest your talents and gifts with confidence because you don’t fear failure. You know God accepts and loves you no matter your failure. 


You are of great worth to Jesus. You have the greatest potential.  Seek to know the promises of His righteousness working in your life. Don’t allow yourself or anyone else to condemn your faith in Jesus. A Christian with a spiritually healthy self-image honors God’s righteousness above his own ability and his own sense of worth. True humility doesn’t debase you, and it doesn’t exalt you. True humility esteems God above everything else. 


Not believing Jesus has made you worthy will keep you from expecting and attempting great things for God. Nothing can shake your confidence when you believe Jesus’ precious blood paid the full price for you to come freely into God's presence. Don’t just hear and read what others declare the Word says. You have to take possession of it in your own heart. Take the Word in, and meditate on it. The Holy Spirit reveals the truth of His righteousness at work in you.


Jesus has forgiven you. Forgive the inadequacy you see in yourself. He knows who you are because of His Son. He wants you to know it, too. You are accepted. You are more than adequate for His purposes. When you stand before God set free in the love of Jesus, out of you flows His worth—His holiness—His power—His living water. 


“Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen” (Ephesians 3:20-21).



© 2024 Lynn Lacher



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