Jesus said he does not condemn us, not even when we sin. He is not the one who judges us (see John 12:47-48). Nor is the Father. We know this because Jesus told us that by knowing him we also know the Father (John 14:7). Nor does the Holy Spirit condemn us. We are loved deeply and completely, no matter what.
The one who judges us for our sins and executes condemnation is our very own Self, especially when we pass away from the limitations of our earthly brains and our minuscule ability to understand who God really is and what his true character is. We were made in the image of God. That is our true character, but we fail to be who we really are. We fail in myriads of ways every day, but only because we don’t know ourselves well enough, which happens because we don’t know God well enough and we don’t spend enough time contemplating that we were made in his image.
When Father God created us, fashioning us and giving us life in our mother’s womb, he did not make something that was foreign to him. He gave us his own life, his spiritual DNA. But due to the corruption of the world into which he sent us, which is described by the doctrine of the Original Sin of Adam and Eve, it wasn’t long after our birth that we began to live contrary to who we really are as children of God.
By baptism, God adopts us back into his Fatherhood. And Jesus renders to us his saving grace, which he obtained for us by absorbing our sins into himself on the cross and killing our sinful tendencies there. And the Holy Spirit is absorbed by our spirit so that we can live empowered lives, able to be who we really are, doing what true children of God can do.
Jesus said that if we believe in him — i.e., if we embrace and trust his true character (rather than our limited, often mistaken ideas of who he is, which is based on the world’s corrupted view of him) — we will do the same works he did when he walked the earth in his human body, and even greater works (John 14:12). Of course we will! Because we are now his body on earth.
However, it’s obvious that we don’t know who we really are and we don’t know who God really is, because we are not doing what he did nor the greater things that he wants to accomplish through a globally-spread body of believers. To the extent that we do some of what he did and some of what he wants to accomplish in the world, we can rejoice that we are more our true selves than we used to be. Less to condemn; more to celebrate.
So, who is it that judges us and condemns us when we sin? We do. At the hour of our death when we pass from the limitations of the earthly life and our earthly brains and our earthly, partially corrupted understandings, we condemn ourselves. In our passing from limitations to the limitlessness of God’s kingdom, we will see and understand God fully, and we will fully know who we truly are, and we will be able to judge how well we lived up to our true character. We will condemn everything we did that was not our true Self.
This is what we call “purgatory”. In judging the horror of being someone other than our true Self, we will condemn ourselves and we will suffer. And we will simultaneously rejoice, because now we are completely free to be our true Self. We are purged of all illusions, wrong understandings, misconceptions, bad earthly programming and demonic temptations to be and do what God did not create us to be and do. We are full of the joy that is in the character of our true Self.
Let us use today and the rest of our earthly lives to discover more and more truth about who God really is and what his character is really like, contemplating on how this is who we truly are and this is what our character is truly like.
It is entirely easier to resist temptation and overcome sinful tendencies if we embrace who we really are. In Christ, we are no longer sinners. Baptism restored the character of sainthood to us. The day we consciously embraced Christ as our Savior, we were reborn into the sainthood that God gave us. And now, by humbly asking the Holy Spirit to renew us daily, the Spirit of God empowers us to live that sainthood more and more fully with each passing day.
We can measure our progress by how much Jesus is making a difference in our world through us — including through events that are supernatural.
Let us pray:
Father God, help me to know You as the Perfect Father that You are, who is far better than every earthly example of parenthood that I’ve witnessed. Help me to see myself as your beloved son/daughter, treasured by You, safely embraced by You.
Lord Jesus, You are my Savior. Thank you for taking my sins upon Yourself on the cross. You are my Good Shepherd guiding me toward Heaven, bringing me to Our Father even now, and giving me Your Holy Spirit. I do believe in You; help my unbelief. I trust You; help my lack of trust.
Holy Spirit, renew me. Help me to be who God the Father created me to be. You have my permission to change me. Teach me today more about who I truly am as a beloved child of God and follower of Christ. Activate in me the gifts of Your Spirit, the charisms of true faith. Change the world through me, beginning with even the smallest of actions in my day today.
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© 2017 by Terry A. Modica