Posted by: karanoel | February 11, 2019

Case closed

John and I were sorting through old boxes in the garage yesterday. On a folded paper, tucked into a notebook, was a journal entry recounting a terrifying dream. I’ve already blogged about the dream so I won’t repeat it here, but there was a detail I hadn’t remembered. After the malicious woman tried to destroy me by an explosion, the voice of a narrator suddenly chimed in with these haunting words: “And from that day forth, she was marred, burned and disfigured.”

I think the reason I cry when I read this 18 years later is because that authoritative declaration, as if the end of my story had already been decided, was vividly real to me – not just in the night hours, but every waking one too. The narrative was that what had been done to me and what I had chosen to do had caused irreparable damage, not only me, but to my future and hope. I believed it with all my heart.

I now know that the voice belonged to satan, who lives to condemn us. He declares us guilty and sentences us to life in prison, which we willingly accept because the evidence is so damning and we believe we deserve it. For those who have accepted Jesus, he has no actual authority. It would be like the clerk of the court hearing a case and sentencing a defendant. That would be laughable. Unless the clerk were sitting in the judge’s seat, holding a gavel and putting on a convincing show. The sentence couldn’t stand, but if you didn’t know the judge were a fraud, you wouldn’t know to resist his determination for your future.

prison bars
When a friend and I were praying for someone recently, I saw a scene unfold in my mind. In it, she was sitting behind prison bars. The door was unlocked and when someone came to swing it open and tell her that she was free, she pleaded her guilt, saying “You don’t understand what I’ve done! I deserve to be here.” and clung tightly to the bars.

It’s not that we haven’t done terrible things or had awful things done to us. The files evidencing wrongdoing are enormous. We deserve to be condemned and others do too. And yet the Judge of the Highest Court has regarded the evidence, seen that the penalty was already paid by the cross and declared us innocent for now and forever more. Every word of guilt was covered by the blood of Jesus and the files were sealed by his resurrection. There are no more possible appeals. It is finished.

This is the unfathomable joy of the gospel. This is the kind of mercy that brings us to our knees in gratitude. This is the glorious power that silences any voice framing our future with anything besides freedom and hope. You are not condemned. And if wrongs have been done to you, you are not condemned to a life of misery because of them. Do you believe it? Will you you challenge any other narrative with the authority of God’s Word and receive your freedom?

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus, because the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and death. Romans 8:1-2

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11


Responses

  1. Karanoel:

    Great teaching. You have a wonderful gift with words. You express yourself simply and clearly. It’s a pleasure to read what you have written. Thank you!

    Paul, a friend of your Dad and Mom

    >

    • Thank you Paul! That means so much!


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