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WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU MESS UP BIG TIME

This study is about what to do after you mess up really bad by committing some grievous sin. We
will cover how the sin happens, how you should react, how you should perceive God as your
Father and His reaction, and how to remedy the situation.

This issue, like many issues, often falls into two extreme camps.

The first camp treats sin very lightly. They say when you sin it's no big deal because we're all
sinners saved by grace. It's okay if you sin because God loves you and we're not under the law.

BUT the Bible says:

"[14] For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.

[15] What then? shall we sin, because we are not under the law, but under grace? God forbid.

[16] Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to
whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?" - Romans 6:14-
16

These are the antinomians and their view of God is idolatrous. They view God as a loving Santa
Claus who never gets angry at them and just wants to give them presents all the time. This leads
to a light view of sin and therefore a lifestyle of habitual practicing of sin with no repentance.

BUT the Bible says:

"[6] Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither
known him.

[7] Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is
righteous.

[8] He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this
purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil.

[9] Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot
sin, because he is born of God.

[10] In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not
righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother." - I John 3:6-10
They don't understand that if God were their Father, He would chasten them to bring conviction
and repentance when they sin. They view this as negative, legalistic, and Pharisaical.

BUT the Bible says:

Jesus said, "As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent." -
Revelation 3:19

"[5] And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son,
despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him:

[6] For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.

[7] If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the
father chasteneth not?

[8] But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not
sons.

[9] Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them
reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?

[10] For they verily for a few days chastened us after their own pleasure; but he for our profit,
that we might be partakers of his holiness.

[11] Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless
afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised
thereby." - Hebrews 12:5-11

Now it says that God chastens us that "we might be partakers of HIS HOLINESS". This means that
God is holy and the goal of chastening His children is to make them more holy like Him. Skip
down to verse 14 to see this:

"[14] Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:"

The Bible also says:

"[13] Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that
is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;

[14] As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your
ignorance:

[15] But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;

[16] Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy." - I Peter 1:13-16


So the core problem with the antinomians is that they don't see God as holy and because of
that, they see no point in Him making them holy. They only want to be forgiven of their sin. They
do not want to be set free from the power of sin even though that is the reason the Bible says
Jesus came to die for us:

"[21] And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his
people from their sins." - Matthew 1:21

The second camp goes to the other extreme. They see God as angry, with very little patience,
ready at any moment to strike them down as soon as they sin. They do not see God's mercy,
longsuffering, and love.

Now these people might give lipservice to God's mercy and love sometimes, but most of the
time the emphasis is on God's anger, wrath, and vengeance.

Sadly the reason many of these people end up with this view is because of the father that raised
them. He most likely was abusive, neglectful, maybe not even around. This can often distort
people's view of what God is like.

Because of this view of God, these people often get caught in an endless loophole of guilt. They
preach hard against sin and they are very hard on others when they sin, but when they
themselves sin, they fall into a state of overwhelming guilt, shame, and despair. They may repent
and ask for forgiveness, but they do not really believe God has forgiven them. So they continue
on with a giant burden on their back never really experiencing the peace that God can give
them. They often do not have the joy of the Lord which the Bible says is supposed to be our
strength.

" ...for the joy of the LORD is your strength." - Nehemiah 8:10

Another type of person in this camp is the quintessential Pharisee. They will preach hard against
other people' sin. They will act self righteous. They will mostly preach the wrath of God and
avoid talking about His love and mercy, but when they themselves sin, they treat lightly. This is
utter hypocrisy. Jesus condemned these Pharisees more harshly than any other group of people
in the Bible. He said they were serpents, fools, hypocrites, and children of the devil.

"[42] But woe unto you, Pharisees! for ye tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs, and pass
over judgment and the love of God: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other
undone." - Luke 11:42

"[23] Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and
cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these
ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone." - Matthew 23:23

For this study, we will deal with those that struggle with viewing God as only angry and keep
getting trapped in a pit of despair.

We already showed from the Bible that God is holy and He wants us to be holy. He helps us to
grow in holiness with His chastisement. What we need to focus on is the fact that He only
chastens those who are His children. He only chastens those whom He loves. He does not
chasten the lost when they sin. This should bring you comfort in knowing that you are His child
and He loves you.

"He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes." --
Proverbs 13:24

If you struggle with viewing God as only angry and vengeful, you need to spend major time
reading and meditating on scriptures that talk of His other atttributes.

God is loving.

"[7] Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of
God, and knoweth God.

[8] He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.

[9] In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten
Son into the world, that we might live through him.

[10] Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the
propitiation for our sins.

[11] Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another." - I John 4:7-11

God is merciful.

"[35] But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your
reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the
unthankful and to the evil.

[36] Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful." - Luke 6:35,36

"[8] For finding fault with them, he saith, Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, when I will make
a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah:

[9] Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by
the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they continued not in my covenant, and
I regarded them not, saith the Lord.

[10] For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the
Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a
God, and they shall be to me a people:

[11] And they shall not teach every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know
the Lord: for all shall know me, from the least to the greatest.

[12] For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their iniquities will I
remember no more." - Hebrews 8:8-12

God is faithful.

"[9] God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord."
- I Corinthians 1:9

"[24] Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it." - I Thessalonians 5:24

"Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to
him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator." - I Peter 4:19

So that is an issue in and of itself. You need to correct your imbalanced view of God, but we need
to deal with the next issue of what to do when you mess up.

Your general attitude should be striving to stay away from sin and obey God. If while you are
striving to obey, you stumble and sin against God, this is what you must do.

First you must know that your sin does not make you lose your salvation, but it does break your
fellowship with God. The peace and joy of salvation will be stripped from you immediately.

"[5] This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is
light, and in him is no darkness at all.

[6] If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the
truth:

[7] But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the
blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin." - I John 1:5-7

(Darkness is not only sin, but also COVERING your sin. This means not confessing it.)

"[8]Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice.

[12] Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit." - Psalms
51:8,12

If this happens, the first thing you need to do is repent. I will explain what real repentance would
mean.

You will get alone with God. You will get down on your knees or face and confess your sin to Him.
This will be a sincere confessing from the heart with sorrow for you sin, hate for your sin, and a
desire to turn from your sin. Cry out to God for forgiveness and the grace that you need to avoid
committing that sin again.

"[8] If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.

[9] If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all
unrighteousness." - I John 1:8,9

What is extremely important at this point is that you believe the promise of the word of God
that says He is faithful to forgive you if you confess. If you do not believe God has forgiven you,
you are calling God a liar and attacking His faithful promise.

If this is a major sin, you should fast as well as pray.

"[5] Is it such a fast that I have chosen? a day for a man to afflict his soul? is it to bow down his
head as a bulrush, and to spread sackcloth and ashes under him? wilt thou call this a fast, and an
acceptable day to the LORD?

[6] Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy
burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke?" - Isaiah 58:5,6

When you cry out to God, I really mean pour your heart out. God will not despise a broken
heart.

"[12] Therefore also now, saith the LORD, turn ye even to me with all your heart, and with
fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning:

[13] And rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the LORD your God: for he is
gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil." - Joel
2:12,13

"[17] The righteous cry, and the LORD heareth, and delivereth them out of all their troubles.

[18] The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite
spirit." - Psalms 34:17,18

After your repentance. You should do the following:

1. Read more Bible than normal, especialy the Psalms. The Bible talks about the husband
washing his wife wiht the water of the word. This means the word of God has a cleansing effect
and you must cleanse your mind and heart after sinning. The Bible says you are immediately
cleansed by the blood of Jesus Christ when you confess your sin, but it also talks about cleansing
withe word of God. This also shows a desire to get back in fellowship with God and get back on
the right track. Go on a binge reading session.

"[25] Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;

[26] That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word," - Ephesians
5:25,26

"Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy
word." - Psalms 119:9

2. Avoid any places, people, or things that may be a stumblingblock for you to commit that same
sin again. The flesh is weak. Fleshly lusts war against the soul. This is why we must be tactical in
the war against our own flesh. The Bible says make not provision for the flesh. This means to not
feed the flesh/the old man and it means avoid anything that would make it easy for you to sin.

"[13] Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and
wantonness, not in strife and envying.

[14] But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts
thereof." - Romans 13:13,14

"I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not
cleave to me." - Psalms 101:3

3. Get your focus off of yourself. Oftentimes we can get so focused on out own problems we
forget about helping others. One of the best things to do after you repent and get things right, is
to go help someone else in need, someone with a problem, or even going to evangelize. Seeing
the plight of the lost often puts things in perspective very quickly and sobers you up.

"[25] And, behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tempted him, saying, Master, what shall I do to
inherit eternal life?

[26] He said unto him, What is written in the law? how readest thou?

[27] And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy
soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.

[28] And he said unto him, Thou hast answered right: this do, and thou shalt live.

[29] But he, willing to justify himself, said unto Jesus, And who is my neighbour?

[30] And Jesus answering said, A certain man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell
among thieves, which stripped him of his raiment, and wounded him, and departed, leaving him
half dead.

[31] And by chance there came down a certain priest that way: and when he saw him, he passed
by on the other side.

[32] And likewise a Levite, when he was at the place, came and looked on him, and passed by on
the other side.

[33] But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was: and when he saw him, he
had compassion on him,

[34] And went to him, and bound up his wounds, pouring in oil and wine, and set him on his own
beast, and brought him to an inn, and took care of him.

[35] And on the morrow when he departed, he took out two pence, and gave them to the host,
and said unto him, Take care of him; and whatsoever thou spendest more, when I come again, I
will repay thee.

[36] Which now of these three, thinkest thou, was neighbour unto him that fell among the
thieves?

[37] And he said, He that shewed mercy on him. Then said Jesus unto him, Go, and do thou
likewise." - Luke 10:25-37

4. Listen to, read the lyrics of, and sing some hymns. This is very beneficial towards renewing a
right spirit within you. The Bible even associates being filled with the spirit and singing hymns.
That is what you want. Walk in the Spirit and you shall not fulfill the lusts of the flesh.

"[18] And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;
[19] Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody
in your heart to the Lord;" - Ephesians 5:18,19

"[16] Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one
another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord." -
Colossians 3:16