In Genesis God said “Let us make people in our image”(Gen 1:26). Then came sin and the rest which we know so well.
We are condemned by this original sin, but God gave Moses instructions on how to avoid condemnation with the Ten Commandments (Ex 20:1-17) and the other rules and regulations: the covenant between God and the nation Israel (see Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy). These rules and regulations contain very specific instructions on sacrifice – what and how to sacrifice to obtain forgiveness and make atonement for one’s sins. Then God sent the Perfect Sacrifice (see the Gospels). He who died on the Cross for us. So in this last and perfect sacrifice we have found relief from condemnation. When we accept Jesus Christ as our Saviour, confess it with our mouths and believe it in our hearts, we are no longer condemned (Rom 10:9).
We have been bought free by the Blood of the Son. When we do take the step to accept Jesus we must “die to the old self” (Col 3:3). Therefore we must leave all selfishness and self-centredness behind. Now remembering that we were created in God’s image, it is not for us to say: “I am not good enough” that is self-centred thinking in the first place and in the second place it’s basically insulting God.
Self-centredness includes self-condemnation. Condemnation means to declare something unfit, to disapprove of something and to sentence somebody to be punished – mostly to death (Oxford dictionary).
Now Jesus has already set us free from condemnation to hell – the ultimate, eternal death. Who then, are we, to condemn ourselves? God forgave our sins when we recognized the Cross, His Son and that Ultimate Sacrifice.
When you say things like “all I do is wrong” or “I only ever make mistakes” and so on, you are declaring yourself unfit, disapproving of yourself. Yes, we make mistakes, we make bad choices, we sin. But the Price has been paid. We are un-condemned through Christ when we confess our sins and ask forgiveness – every. single. day. Oh how glorious our God is! He grants us forgiveness even though we do not deserve it. Nothing we can ever do can make it so that we deserve it. It is only by God’s grace, mercy and love that we receive it.
So we should never condemn ourselves, we should not look inside ourselves for solutions (self-centredness). We should submit fully to the grace of God (2 Cor 12:9), the peace of Christ (John 14:27) and the guidance of the Holy Spirit (John 14:17).
We should use words that say: “Jesus will give me this” and “The Holy Spirit will lead me to that” and by faith – by faith alone, we must seek the righteousness of God.
And those self-help people with all their positive thinking has one thing right: speak it to believe it. Speak your faith out loud. (see Prov 16:24, 18:4, 21, Luke 6:45) This way you hear it and the enemy hears it. Remember the Bible says to “confess with your mouth”. Jesus did miracles by speaking them (not all of them, but most) He said “be healed” (Matt 8:3), “Get up and walk” (Matt 9:6), “Lazarus come out of the grave” (John 11:43). Also Jesus said that if you SAY to the mountain to move and don’t doubt in your heart, the mountain will move (Mark 11:23). Speaking aloud has enormous effect on one’s mind. I don’t know why, it just does. It has an effect that makes one feel more positive, more energised. Probably releases endorphins in one’s brain – I honestly don’t know.
So to my thinking, saying things aloud in faith must – therefore, have results in your mind, your heart and your environment, as well as whatever it is that you have been praying for. It feels silly to do it, I know it does, I feel like an idiot every time I do it, even though there’s not even the dog to hear. But it somehow solidifies this hope you have and it really, really does strengthen one’s faith.