Summary: We are not condemned because Jesus paid the price.

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Text: “There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.”

According to the American Heritage Dictionary, the word “condemn” has a number of meanings:

1. to express disapproval – denounce

2. to judge to be guilty – convict

3. to pronounce judgment against – sentence

4. to declare unfit for use or consumption – building

5. for public use – eminent domain

I don’t think any of us would like to be condemned for:

1. the way we talk

2. the way we dress

3. the movies we watch

4. the people with whom we associate

5. the food we eat

6. the place we live

7. the way we witness and carry on God’s work

Most people do not want to be condemned for anything. When people are condemned, rebuked, corrected, blamed, or judged, they don’t feel good about it.

Can you think of a time in your life when you were condemned, blamed, or criticized for something?

Maybe as a child, your brother or sister or friend did something and you were blamed and received a spanking, sent to your room or put on restriction and prohibited from leaving the house for a period of time.

Most prisoners do not feel as though they did any wrong. The man on death row feels that he has been unjustly treated. Most prisoners tend to justify the wrong they have done.

One prisoner said he shot his parents because they were very strict with him when he was a youngster. Another said that he robbed his employer because he wasn’t being paid enough. Yet another prisoner said he shot his girlfriend because she wanted to sever their relationship.

We can all make excuses for our actions, but these excuses are not justifiable in the eyes of earthly justice nor are they justifiable in the eyes of our Heavenly Father.

Most people believe that if a person does something wrong or commits some crime, that person should have to pay the consequences. The penalty could be incarceration, community service, monetary payment, probation, restraining order, etc. When a crime is committed, a lesson must be learned by the person committing the crime.

In some countries, if a person is caught stealing, that person’s hand or arm is cut off. A person here in the United States was found guilty of stealing some articles and received 25 lashes on his bare back. In the State of Virginia, the punishment for stealing a dog (horse, cow, or pony) leads to 1 to10 years in prison while stealing a cat in the same state is punishable by imprisonment for up to one year.

We are not here to pass judgment on anyone. We have laws in our country that are supposed to be carried out when a crime is committed. I believe all of us are in agreement that the punishment should fit the crime committed.

Crime is a sin because it is not in accordance with God’s Law. Any time we deviate from God’s Law, we have sinned. God’s Law says:

1. You shall have no other gods

2. You shall not make yourself an idol

3. You shall not misuse the Lord’s name

4. You shall keep the Sabbath Holy

5. Honor you father and mother

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