4 Truths Christians Need to Own

There is a trend in Christian circles and hearing it makes me shudder.  It is the trend of self-shaming, and is often masqueraded within the use of Scripture. Shame is bad enough but even more so when we heap it upon ourselves.

4 Truths Christians Need to Own

We see or hear it when Christians say things like these:

“I’m not worth forgiveness. I still struggle with this sin.”

“I’m not as godly or holy as I should be.”

“I’m such a failure, I just can’t get this whole Christian thing right.”

Thinking like this inhibits our ability to come to the throne of grace, with full assurance in faith of our forgiveness. When we wallow in our sin, it lessens the power of the blood of Jesus’ sacrifice.

God does say we are sinners in need of grace (Romans 3:22-24). God’s Word does say that we were once in darkness, operating out of the flesh (Colossians 1:13-14). But the Bible says all kinds of other truths we need to grasp and believe as well. Many of those truths fall on us the moment we trust in Jesus as our Savior and start walking in the light (1 John 1:7).

1. We are made in God’s image.

Genesis 1:27 — “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.”

We bear His likeness, even before we knew Him. Think about how your words about yourself or other people reflect on His design.

2. We reflect His glory. 

2 Corinthians 3:18 — “And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.”

People see Him through us. Will they see a person so enthralled with pouring guilt over sins that they’ve committed or will they see a person walking in grace and loving the freedom that forgiveness offers?

3. We are worth dying for.

Ephesians 2:4-9 — “But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”

And that means that we are loved beyond any thought of self-preservation. God Himself came down to pay our penalty so that we would know we are worth something invaluable to him.

4. We should rejoice in redemption.

Romans 5:6-11 — “For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.”

In all this, I’m not saying that we ought to take our sin lightly. Far from it actually, we must repent of sin, confess it and seek forgiveness and reconciliation. However, what I am saying is that we need to walk in the freedom that we have through faith. We must walk in our identity in Christ.

Power of the Blood Quote

If people are constantly hearing struggles with sin and rarely hearing the joy of redemption, there is something vastly wrong with our theology.

1 John 1:9 — “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

Instead, “let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful.” (Hebrews 10:22-23)

I urge Christians to stand in the grace given to you. Please stop cutting yourself down and bashing yourself with shame and guilt. If you believe in the redemption of Jesus Christ, you are forgiven! Act (and speak) like it.

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Holly currently lives in Nebraska with her amazing & godly husband, sweet & smart 4-year old daughter & joyful 2 year old son. She is a stay-at-home mom who serves with her local MOPS group, and on her church’s Mission Leadership Team for missionary support. She writes at The Brown Tribe for the purpose of discipling and encouraging women and mothers. She is also a contributor for Missional Call & Raising Up Stones. In her spare time she enjoys coffee, photography, exploring the culinary craft, helping combat human trafficking through awareness and is currently writing her first book. You can follow along with Holly on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, and Instagram.

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  1. says

    Holly, this is so true! I love this statement “When we wallow in our sin, it lessens the power of the blood of Jesus’ sacrifice.”

    We forgive others so freely sometimes, yet we are so unforgiving when it comes to ourselves.


    • says

      Thank you so much, Marie! I completely agree, I have the same tendency myself. Thanks for stopping by and sharing the encouragement!

  2. says

    Enjoyed reading your article. Paul, wrote three chapters telling us who we are in Christ. Our identity as God’s children. WE do need to stand as Christians and believe it!
    Thank you

    • says

      Thank you Cesiah! I also love Ephesians and I’m so glad you caught the vision and truth here. Thank you for stopping by and sharing the encouragement!

  3. says

    Oh how we need to get reminded by these beautiful thoughts all the time. We are more than how we perceive ourselves indeed.

    Thank you Marie for another inspiring and heartwarming post.

    Enjoy your weekend.

  4. says

    I like how you ended the post – “If you believe in the redemption of Jesus Christ, you are forgiven! Act (and speak) like it.” So truefore! I can think of many conversations where someone cut themselves down, most times in the name of ‘humilIty’. Often its not really humility at all, but a form of pride. Its okay to claim a compliment with a gracious “thank you”. Being humble is never about degrading or shaming ourselves. I’m just having a fiery little chat in my head oever here! Get off the “I want to look humble by shaming myself” train. If you are in Christ- SPEAK LIKE IT.

    Okay, I’m done. Thank you for stirring my heart, Holly!

    • says

      YES KAYLENE! I wholeheartedly agree with you. Thank you so much for your grace and sharing ways in which this post connected with you. I absolutely love the sharing of lessons God is teaching us! I appreciate you, friend!!

  5. says

    Great post! I see too many Christians who believe in Christ & have asked for forgiveness but for some reason still hold on to those old sins like heavy luggage. Thanks so much for sharing, I really enjoyed this!

    • hollythewoo says

      Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing this encouragement. I, too, know believers who find themselves continuing to walk in shame, rather than freedom. It’s such a sad thing to see. Jesus came to break that bondage so we can walk in freedom and grace! Thank you again for the insight.

  6. says

    Such an important word here, Holly. I think discouragement like what you’ve pointed out here is a tool the enemy uses cunningly in our lives. Because after all, if we can’t get it right, then what’s the point of pressing on in this Christ-following life? Thank you for pointing us toward the truth we need to defeat this lie! Visiting from G&T. 🙂

    • says

      Thanks, beautiful friend! It is also my hope that believers stop believing lies in order to take hold of the hope and promise that God established on our behalf!

  7. Rochelle says

    Where in scripture does it say this…”When we wallow in our sin, it lessens the power of the blood of Jesus’ sacrifice.”

    • says

      Hello Rochelle, thanks for your question. That line is not a quote from the Bible. It is my summarization of the habit that Christians often practice in not believing that they are forgiven, that Jesus’ atonement for sins is enough for forgiveness.

      I want to urge believers to rest in the assurance that Paul states it in Romans 8:1: “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” Therefore, we ought not to condemn ourselves, lest we make light of Jesus’ sacrifice. I hope it makes more sense now.

      • Carrie says

        Holly, so what you are saying in your summarization is that our actions can evoke a change in the efficacy of the finished work of Christ? (E.g. The creation generates change in the Creator; Christ’s work is effective based on my thoughts/actions.) And perhaps the “Christians” you know who are “wallowing” are actually not converted, regenerated persons at all because to be focusing on sin and the incapability to deal with it, coupled with a lack of understanding of forgiveness would seem to point to a person who does not understand the atonement at all. Also, in your 3rd point, you make the statement that we are “worth dying for”. I would contend that the scripture you later point to, out of Romans 5, shows that our worth is a man-centered idea, not from scripture. The whole point of the salvation story is that we are NOT worth dying for. The Holy for the unholy, the Living for the dead, Righteousness for unrighteousness. We did not deserve any of it (Romans 5:8, Ephesians 2:8-9, Romans 3:23) and perhaps the reason these people you know are wallowing in their sin and seem unable to grasp forgiveness and new life is because they are focused on their own self-righteous worthiness and haven’t truly repented from a life of sin and started walking anew. There is a difference between a pagan (or a goat) condemning himself for his sin, with no hope, and a regenerated believer mourning over the enormity of his sin (1 Peter 1:16, Romans 7). We must be very, very careful in our treatment of scripture and the application of it. The bible is about Christ, not us, and always pointing things back to our ego, image, failings, victories and perceived needs results in error and poor teaching. Perhaps these people need fewer pats on the back and encouragement that they are okay and actually need more Gospel and examination to see if they be in the faith at all. (2 Corinthians 13:5)

        • says

          Hi Carrie, thanks for your comment, I agree that one must be careful in how they use the Word. No, I am not saying that our actions can evoke a change in the efficacy of the atonement. What I am purporting is an admonition for believers to trust in the promises of God through Scripture no matter how they feel about themselves or their sin. I would never go so far as to say that people are not Christians (believers) because they doubt their forgiveness by dwelling on the depth of their sin. It may be a matter of spiritual maturity but I won’t presume that these people do not know and love the Lord.

          As for being worthy/unworthy of Christ’s death, both are true. I absolutely know what you are saying because I do believe that we are unworthy of salvation and that it took God to do it on our behalf, which is what each of your cited verses point at. But the perspective that I am driving at is the love for us that He had since the beginning of creation – He wants to be in relationship with us.

          Has God not pursued us throughout history in His redemptive plan? Did God not make covenant with us based solely on His character and not on our efforts (His promises stand despite us, they are immutable, see Heb 6:13-18)? Did God not place Jesus in the crucifixion as our atonement so that we would gain access to this relationship with Him? (Hebrews 2:16-18; 1 John 2:1-2). We are heirs of the promise, not because of us or anything we’ve done or not done, but through Jesus and His death on our behalf. But what motivates this death on our behalf? “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.” (John 15:13) and it is in that sense, his love for us, that I say we are worth dying for.

          His death for us is preceded by his love for us!

          In no way am I telling people to make light of their sin, neither that we ought to dwell on it. We must recognize it, confess it, and rest in the forgiveness offered because of Christ’s atoning sacrifice (1 John 1:9).

          “In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.” — 1 John 4:9-11

          I hope this helps clarify the point of this post. Thank you for your comment.

        • Rochelle says

          Well, I have to say I agree with everyone of Carrie’s comments. You and your friends do not seem to understand atonement or what Jesus said in Matthew 5:4 “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.” We are to mourn over our sin because there is great comfort in the forgiveness of sins. A person who mourns over their sin and is sickened by it is a mark of a true believer. So let me ask you Holly, do you mourn over your sin? Do any of your friends mourn over their sin? Do you or your friends get repulsed when you sin against a Holy God? Instead of giving your “opinion” on what you think are “4 truths that Christians should own” maybe you should open up your Bible and actually state 4 biblical truths that Jesus actually did say. And if you need help with keeping things in context may I recommend Fighting for the Faith with Chris Rosebrough. He will teach you how to rightly divide God’s Word between truth and error. Because right now Holly you are taking God’s Word out of context and are guilty of leading other women astray. If you want to understand the bible in context and what it’s true meaning is may I also recommend Grace to You (gty.org) with John MacArthur. And I would highly suggest you look into the biblical role of women and understand what a woman’s responsibility truly is.

          • says

            Wow, Rochelle, there’s so much in your comment that’s just not worth a response. I believe it reflects the character of the person giving it. Did you not read my response to Carrie? Where have I said we should not mourn our sin? I, in fact, said the opposite. I’m sorry you feel the way you do. May you have peace as you go about your evening.

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