The Mental Health Solution . com
"The entrance of thy words giveth light (Psalm 119:130)."

Guilt

"If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (1 John 1:9 NASB)."

"Cast your burden upon the LORD and He will sustain you; He will never allow the righteous to be shaken (Psalm 55:22 NASB)."

"Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1 NASB)."

"For the word of God is living and powerful . . . (Hebrews 4:12 NKJV)."

"Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ (Galatians 6:2)."

This article assumes that you are dealing with guilt over having done something wrong or having failed to do something good that you should have done. Guilt is a very common mental health concern. The Bible provides clear guidance on how to deal with this issue. Here's some steps.

First, admit to yourself and to God that you have sinned. This is the necessary first step.

Second, confess your sin to God. Make it clear to God that you are sorry for your sin and will make a genuine effort not to repeat the sin in the future. Once you've done this, God has forgiven you. And there is no need to repeat this process.

You should also resolve to forgive yourself.

Third, Satan will, of course, continue to bring up the issue. The easiest way to deal with this is to simply quote this Scripture: ". . . there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus." Say it out loud. This will usually end the spiritual attack. Remember, the Word of God has supernatural power; it is "living and powerful."

Fourth, sometimes more is needed. If you think this may be the case, 'cast your burden on the Lord'; that is, surrender the issue to God and let Him carry the emotional burden and manage the situation. God is strong enough to carry the burden. And He is the only one who always knows what—if anything—still needs to be done.

If you surrender the issue to God—and are willing to do whatever He says to do, or not do—you will experience a lot more peace.

If you already know there is nothing more to be done, you can simply say, "Lord, I thank you for carrying my burden."

Remember the nature of a burden: If you're not carrying it, the weight is off of you.

Fifth, stop thinking about it! Think about something else. Continuing to dwell on the issue amounts to taking the burden back from God. This has predictable negative emotional consequences.

Sixth, additional guidance. Here are some items.

  • If you feel the need, find someone you can talk to about the issue. This should be someone with a compassionate heart and reasonably good judgement.
  • If there is any doubt as to how to deal with the issue, pray and seek out wise Christian counsel; preferably more than one person.
  • You can use the Scriptures mentioned in this article repeatedly, as needed.
  • If you've been rude or otherwise abusive, writing a letter to apologize can go a long way. Satan can bring these issues up, in the person's mind, again and again.

Finally, in regard to undeserved self-condemnation. This is a favorite trick of Satan. The antidote is simple:

  • Quote this Scripture: ". . . there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1 NASB)."
  • Think about something else.
  • Repeat as necessary.

Again, you can also seek out counsel, if needed.

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Scripture quotations taken from the New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.
Used by permission. (www.Lockman.org).

Scripture quotations marked (NLT) are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.