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Devotional - week of November 5, 2006


ashamed?

 

 For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness. What fruit did you have then in the things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death.  Romans 6:20-21

 

Paul wrote in Romans 6:20-21 that some things believers did before their conversion to Christ left them with feelings of shame.

 

Paul explained in Romans 6:19 that non-believers do things that they are ashamed of because they presented their members—parts of their bodies:

 

… as slaves of uncleanness, and of lawlessness leading to more lawlessness …

 

Paul then concluded Romans 6:19 with an appeal to his Christian readers to present their “members as slaves of righteousness for holiness.” The appeal reveals what all believers know. God’s children continue to do things that result in feelings of shame.

 

It is our know-it-all attitude that causes us to do the foolish things that we are ashamed of. This is explained in Romans 1:22. Referring to all people, Paul wrote:

 

Professing to be wise, they became fools …

 

A believer can be delivered from foolish things and his resultant shame by living out his union with Christ and experiencing the crucifixion of his know-it-all attitude. But what about the things we have done that we are still ashamed of?

 

First, if our sense of shame is the result of sin, we can be assured that we are forgiven when we repent of and confess our sins. There is no need to confess one act of sin over and over.

 

Second, we can turn our feelings of shame into something positive. We can use those feelings to motivate ourselves to experience our oneness with Christ.

 

Also, we can permit those feelings to motivate us to teach other believers about their oneness with Christ. When they respond positively and continue to live out that life, they will be free from continuing to do the things that cause the feelings of shame.