Feeling Shame Is Not Repentance

Petar Nenadov | October 9, 2013

"What do you say to people who are dealing with shame from sexual sin?" a longtime friend asked me in a text message.

That question deserves more than a text response, but I wrote, "It could only be the strategy of Satan to allow the shame of one sin to lead you into more sin. And so I would go to Psalm 51—this psalm shows how to deal with shame from sexual sin.  And the prayer for restored joy is a big key."

Insight from Screwtape

screwtapeThis question from my friend hints at the heart of many struggles in the Christian life—how we respond to the choices we make is just as important as the choices themselves. In popular media when someone is being tempted, it's common for an angel and a devil to appear, each trying to sway the person toward good or evil. Once a character makes a decision, the devil disappears.

In our everyday experience, however, the tempter never disappears. In fact, he does the most effective work after the supposed "crisis moment." C. S. Lewis offers insight on this work in The Screwtape Letters

I see only one thing to do at the moment. Your…

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