Friday, February 22, 2008

Guilt: God's Vehicle Towards Our Forgiveness

This morning, I found this awesome video clip via Neil's 4Simpsons/Eternity Matters blog.

Neil posted the important portion of the video clip:

"All I’m hearing is some new age “God is love” one-size-fits-all crap . . . I want a real chaplain who believes in a real God and a real Hell . . . I need answers, and all your questions and uncertainty are only making things worse . . ."

"I need someone who will look me in the eye and tell me how to find forgiveness, because I am running out of time!"

The truth is, we ALL COULD BE RUNNING OUT OF TIME! No matter how healthy or ill a person is, we do not know how many days we have left in this brief life...

I decided to trace back to the blog where he discovered it.

Next, the Evangelical Outpost [Note: scroll down at that link] led me to Reformed Chicks Babbling. (great blog name!)

Each site shares some wonderful additional commentary!

Here's the video:

At the three blogs mentioned above, many are commenting that they can't even believe that this was on an actual T.V. show. Others, who have seen the entire episode complain that the show didn't quite "get it right." I haven't seen all of it, but this video clip sure does present a powerful argument against the "God is love" and the "no need for repentance" New Age psychobabble that is often being passed off as salvation "truth."

Guilt for having sinned against our Creator is a necessary feeling. There is a specific need to feel guilt. Perhaps we could consider guilt as one of God's vehicles towards our forgiveness. In light of that, guilt then can actually be considered one of God's blessings in disguise.


Because without recognizing our guilt, we would not see our sinful nature. Without seeing our sinful nature, we would not see how we have all disobeyed God's laws and are living in rebellion to Him. Without knowing God's laws (via the Bible), recognizing our rebellion against God, and humbling ourselves to ask for forgiveness, we would not confess sin, repent (which means "to turn away from" sin) and ask Jesus Christ to forgive us of our sins. Once we are cleansed, it is then that through the power of the Holy Spirit of God, Jesus enters into our hearts to be our Lord and Savior.

The post that I had planned to do today is related to that video and discussion.

On another blog, I ran across the following questions:

Pastor Miles,

I have a question that no man of the cloth has been able to answer, unless he already thinks the Bible is not to be read literally. Maybe you can help me out.

Okay, according to the bible, God told Adam, Don’t eat from the tree of knowledge, or you will surely die that day. (Gen. 2:17)

Then the serpent tells Eve, You’re not going to die; God just doesn’t want you to know what he knows. (Gen. 3:4-5)

Adam and Eve eat the fruit and God says, Oh no, man has eaten from the tree of knowledge and now he knows good and evil as we do. Now we have to kick him out of the garden before he eats from the tree of life and lives forever, too. (Gen. 3:22)

So here’s my question: If you read it literally, who was lying to Adam and Eve, and who was telling the truth? - Heather

Here was my response (which has yet to be posted because the blog is moderated):


Hope you don't mind if I jump in here with a response.

First. It is very crucial to use a more accurate translation of the Bible.

I could not find the version that you are using. If you go here and scroll down to the various Bible versions of Genesis 2:17, you will see that none of the translations say, "you will die that day."

Gen. 2:17 (NKJV) - "but of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die."
New King James Version © 1982 Thomas Nelson

Obviously, Adam and Eve did not die "that day." They went on and had many children.

Another incorrect translation can be found in the Genesis 3:3,4 verses you had cited.

Look at the difference in your version vs. the NKJV -

The NKJV: Gen 3:4 Then the serpent said to the woman, "You will not surely die.

Gen 3:5 "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."

Adam and Eve already knew good. They had one warning from God - not to eat of one tree in the garden. All others where available to them...including the tree of eternal life! However, when they disobeyed God, sinned, and took the fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (remember...they already knew and were experiencing good!!!), then their eyes were "opened" to evil (by committing an evil act of disobedience to God who warned them that they would die) and the temptation by Satan compelled them to sin and desire to "know evil." We have been reaping the terrible consequences of that desire to know evil ever since!

Satan twisted God's words in order to deceive Adam and Eve. He is the liar. Remember, Jesus told us that Satan is the "father of lies" and there "is no truth in him." Even the slightest twisting of God's Word (revealed as one of Satan's favorite tools in the Bible) leads to a lie, isn't truth, and the resulting penalty is death.

Adam and Eve suffered immediate shame and spiritual death. Their physical death happened later. However, their perfect relationship with God (remember, Adam "walked with God" before the Fall) was not just terribly marred by sin; their spiritual life with God immediately died.

Therefore, Someone worthy enough to save us from spiritual death was needed. Thus, the need for our Savior, Jesus Christ, to take the punishment of death (that we all deserve) on that cross at Calvary. His shed blood (there is no remission of sin without the shedding of blood) and his broken body were the propitiation (substitute payment) for our sins, and the sins of the whole world. No one else was worthy (sinless life) on this earth to pay that penalty.

Since Jesus is God, he rose from the dead that first Easter morning. This is the mercy, grace, and love of our awesome God!! Our joyful hope is in Jesus Christ! We wait for the second coming of our Savior!

Back to the Garden.

Remember that the Tree of Life was also in the Garden? Once Adam and Eve sinned, God sent cherubim angels to guard them from reaching out and eating of the Tree of Life.


Because if they did, then they would have had to live eternally in a state of sin, separated from God forever.

This may be speculation on my part, but if Adam and Eve had obeyed God, and instead, resisted the temptation to "be like God" (rather than keeping and maintaining their proper place of honoring, worshiping and obeying Him!); then they could have eaten from the Tree of Life and lived forever...because they would have been sin free!

But they didn't obey. They took Satan's bait. They willfully sinned against God. Thus, the consequences for sin is death.

We all die a physical death because of sin. However, once we acknowledge our sinfulness and our complete and utter inability to save ourselves; it is then that we are convicted of our need to confess and repent (which means turn away from willful sin) and ask Jesus Christ to come into our hearts as Lord and Savior of our lives. We are then born again spiritually, reunited with God the Father through Christ, and redeemed from spiritual death.

If you look in the book of Revelation, you will find the Tree of Life appears again!

At the culmination of all history, believers will eat freely from the Tree of Life and live forever!

Rev 2:7 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.

Rev 22:14 Blessed [are] they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.

HT: Eternity Matters


Christinewjc said...

P.S. Just went back over to "Reformed Chicks Babbling" and noticed a link to Youtube where you can watch the entire ER episode in segments here.

Christinewjc said...

I love the godly wisdom that Spurgeon reveals:

When a spiritual cure is wrought by the Great Physician, praise is one of the surest signs of renewed health.

Charles Spurgeon

Matt W. said...

Thank you for this post. It is so important that we remember these things. It is far to easy to fall into the trap of not wanting to offend people, of not wanting to make them feel bad. It's hard to look someone in the eye and tell them that they are a sinner, and that without the Salvation provided freely by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they will spend eternity in Hell, but that is the pure, unvarnished Truth! If we are unwilling to tell people the Truth about their condition, how can we ever hope that they will come to Salvation?

In one of the Songs by the Go Fish Guys, on their "Snazzy" album (a kids album that my kids can't get enough of) they say, "All this sensitivity has got us in a mess... put on the Holy Armour and TAKE ONE IN THE CHEST!"