March 08, 2024

Jesus Removed Our Shame

Psalm 25:1-22

No one who hopes in you will ever be put to shame. . . .

—  Psalm 25:3

Shame is different from guilt. If you are guilty, you did something wrong, and you realize you are responsible for it. You can feel shame from being guilty, but feelings of shame are not always tied to guilt. Shame has more to do with a lack of self-worth, and that can come from not measuring up to a standard, from feeling insecure, from being bullied or abused in various ways, from public disgrace, ridicule, and more. When you are ashamed, you may or may not have done something wrong, but when others see you, you feel exposed, dirty, unworthy of respect.

When Adam and Eve fell into sin, they realized they had done wrong. They saw that they were naked. They were exposed and felt shame. They tried to cover up and hide. But they couldn’t hide from God—and that was a good thing, because God loved them and valued them, despite what they had done wrong. God loves us all too, despite any bad we have done.

Jesus came to take away the guilt and shame of our sin. And he did that by taking on the most shameful death possible: crucifixion on a Roman cross. He hung there naked, in public disgrace, exposed to the abuse of the jeering crowd. And yet he was innocent. “He endured the cross, scorning its shame” (Hebrews 12:2), so that we can be freed from all shame and live fully with him. Now, because of Jesus, we are forever clean.

Lord Jesus, thank you for taking on the shame of all the world to free us from shame forever. In your name, Amen.

About the author — Kent Van Til

Kent Van Til was a missionary in Costa Rica. He taught theological ethics both there and in the USA. He is the author of four books. The most recent is a spiritual biography of his grandmother entitled, "A Name for Herself: A Dutch Immigrant's Story." Kent likes to fish, hunt, make music, and entertain his grandchildren.

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