Sin (Guilt and Self-Condemnation and God's Love)

October 31, 2019

“God’s love for the biggest sinner is greater than the love of the holiest man for God…Our sins can never overpower or exhaust God. If that were possible, He would not be God. If you believe that God can’t forgive you, you’re worshipping an idol and not the God of the Church or the Scriptures.” (Elder Arsenie Boca of Romania, Father Barnabas Powell)

 

“Remembering a sin we have committed does not mean that the sin has not been forgiven. This remembrance of our sins is only a warning to us lest we become proud and sin again…Forgiveness is both an event and a process….It is not enough to forgive others. We must also learn to forgive ourselves—and to accept the gift of God’s forgiveness… Forgiveness is a gift we give ourselves and others…” (Elder Thaddeus of Vitovnica, Ken Sande, Steve Stephens and Alice Gray , David Stoop)

 

“…idealists and perfectionists, and many of them feel guilty and sinful simply for having temptations...it is helpful to affirm for them that God understands and loves them. It is also helpful to reaffirm that all of us who share flesh, share temptation. Christ became man to share even these temptations and to save us…While it is sometimes good to be intense and perfectionist...in this arena it is destructive. It leads to feelings of isolation and self-condemnation. I challenge those who fall into this to consider what is fair: Is it fair to judge yourself more harshly…? Is it reasonable to judge yourself instead of accepting God’s mercy and love? People need to understand that such self-condemnation is pride, and that we are taking God’s place in judging. In situations like this, a call to repent (change one’s mind) is a welcomed one.” (Fr. John Abdalah)

 

“Sin that we confess but still hold onto to guilt about it can torment us to no end. We can delude ourselves that God does not love us and suffer needlessly…Through sin, man becomes mad, insane. Every sin, even the most seemingly insignificant one, is always an insanity of the soul. Through repentance, man comes to his senses, becomes complete again, comes to himself.” (Sacramental Living Ministries, Venerable Justin of Chelije in Serbia)

 

 “...sin is something that prevents us from loving God fully, not something that prevents God from loving us fully. This difference of focus is often the difference between a relationship with God that breeds a truly contrite heart in which self-forgiveness is possible, or an unhealthy fear of God that breeds a lingering self-condemnation that mistakenly creates a mindset that “God can’t possibly love me” which is the farthest thing from the truth.” (Sacramental Living)

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