Condemnation or Conviction: What Are You Listening To?
Her response came through on the phone instantly. Her tone was sweet, yet serious, and loaded with love.
“That’s condemnation. It’s from the enemy. You kick those thoughts out right now and go get in God’s word!”
She was right. I knew it. In fact, I knew better, I have been there often.
I had fought condemning thoughts for two days. Already tired of constant submission, I started to let go of the truth between condemnation and conviction.
Condemnation always takes you away from God, Conviction brings you towards Him.
This got me thinking. If I knew it and was still battling, how much harder would it be to discern Condemnation vs Conviction for those not as familiar with it?
Today I hope to help clear the path in your mind. Just as my amazing – wouldn’t want to do life without her – friend and accountability gal did for me that day.
Let’s take a look at Condemnation vs Conviction
..for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night… Revelation 12:10b
Satan is an adversary against God and His people. He is out to destroy God’s plans and do anything to move us in a direction away from God. I’ve heard different pastors explain that first His goal is to keep us from salvation. After salvation, his goal is to make us ineffective Christians. I have seen so much truth in that.
Very often when we take steps of obedience, we’re met hard with opposition. Thoughts loaded with fear, guilt or shame will come. It can be about your current situation OR your past sins. They are often general thoughts that seem impossible to take action on. Statements that are heavy and unrelenting.
They will never forgive you.
You have completely ruined your children.
You are a hypocrite and shouldn’t be teaching.
No one is going to listen to you.
You are a failure, you need to give up.
The enemy’s purpose is to stop you from moving forward in obedience. His goal to get you to believe that God doesn’t want to hear from you. To think everything is hopeless and that your doubts, fears or problems are bigger than your God.
Lies. He is the Father of Lies.
Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. Ephesians 6:11
Listening to God
There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. Romans 8:1
It is important to do 3 things when fighting back against condemnation. Acknowledge it for what it is (better yet confess your struggle to someone trusted to pray for you). Pray. Go to God’s word.
And for today, here are some verses I go to often.
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9
Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. 1 John 3:18
For whenever our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and he knows everything. 1 John 3:20
Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died – more than that, who was raised – who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. Romans 8:34
She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you; go, and from now on sin no more.” John 8:11
What about conviction?
Now that you are fighting back against condemnation, let’s look at the importance of conviction in our relationship with the Lord. We shouldn’t fear conviction. It is hard, yes, but a wonderful tool for our spiritual growth.
Conviction shows us our wrong behavior and urges us to repent. It draws us to Jesus and the cross – the forgiveness of sins offered to us all. It brings us out of pits of condemnation and near to God. It helps restore our fellowship with Him.
We can usually see clear action steps to take when it’s conviction.
I was so snappy with her, God please forgive me and give me the right words to apologize to her.
My heart was so defensive when my husband approached me about this. Please help me to have a soft heart and the desire to apologize to him.
and when its past sins or failures, there is nothing better than repeating God’s word back to Him in prayer!
Here’s a recent one for me:
I could never teach about that, I am going to look like such hypocrite.
Thank you, Lord, that you say that you are faithful and just to forgive me of all my sins. I know I can never be enough on my own, but your word says I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. You can use past hurts and experiences for your good and your glory. Help me to seek you and be obedient to whatever you are calling me to do!
The difference of condemnation vs conviction in the Bible is clear. It’s important that we understand the battle that we are in. Acknowledge, pray and use God’s word as our weapon to fight back! Let’s put on our armor friends and guard our hearts!
Will you join me?
Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace.
In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God Ephesians 6:13-17
It’s your turn! Let me know in the comments below how you handle condemnation vs conviction. If you need help in this area, I would love to pray for you!
Talk to you soon!
O Lord, You have pleaded the case for my soul; You have redeemed my life. Lamentations 3:56