Operation Condemnation

Rom 8-1

Captain Deceit, I’m reporting for duty
Do come in lieutenant, I have your next assignment

Your next target is a woman
She is a believer in our Enemy

Years ago she recognized her sin and repented
Then the Adversary snatched her from Satan’s clutches

The so called Holy One forgave all her sins
He even credited Christ’s righteousness to her account

While we are powerless to change her eternal destiny
We can assault her here on earth

I want you to rack her with guilt and condemnation
Daily, focus her mind on her many sins, past and present

Help her to see her willful sin
And the utter depravity of her heart

The pièce de résistance
Will be sins committed after she came to Christ

May she focus on her own wretchedness and unworthiness
Even question if she is really saved

Instead of being filled with joy and peace
Because Christ paid her sin debt

She will be burdened with guilt and brought low
And never desire to share the Gospel

May she be bound with chains
Link after link, memories of her sin

Distract her
So she can’t focus her mind

Do not let her open God’s perfect and inerrant Word
Or let her hide the Enemy’s truth and promises in her heart

Do not let her read or remember
There is no condemnation to those in Christ

Nor walk in freedom
For whom the Son sets free is free indeed

May those hell-bound unbelievers around her
See a fool burdened under the weight of her sin

May she not harken the door of a church
Where the Word of God is taught without compromise

Instead direct her to man’s wisdom
A life of self-effort and temporary rewards

May she not be encouraged and strengthen
By the body of Christ

Whatever you do, don’t let her pray
For her God will hear her prayers and answer

Like the vulnerable lamb who wanders from the flock
Attack and devour when she is alone

Do not let her put her hope in God
Instead cloud her mind with condemnation and defeat

Whatever you do, do not let her be filled with joy and peace
Or give praise, honor and glory to God

Remember, He is our ultimate Enemy
Who desires to save all those who are perishing

Good luck on your assignment lieutenant
Once you succeed, there are many more we need to defeat

by Susan Wachtel
May 14, 2015

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The Morning Report


Condemnation reporting for duty
Master, how grand
We’ve been given another day
To try and thwart God’s revealed plan

To try to keep one more human soul
From receiving salvation through Jesus Christ
To beat down and render His believers ineffective
With the baggage of their own sin

Let me tell you about yesterday’s successes
We have those mired in the muck of their own sin
Blinded to the fact that there is no one righteous
Not understanding that Christ died for them anyway

We have one who calls himself Christian
But temptation achieved great success
Causing him to turn away and fall into sin
Because he failed to take every thought captive

Now instead of sharing the Gospel message
He’s preoccupied with covering his own sin
Lest he be called a hypocrite
Justifying why he chose to do that which God declared sinful

With the holidays upon us
Opportunities abound
Christian thinks she will share the Gospel message
With family and friends yet unsaved

But we reminded her that they are unworthy sinners
Undeserving to receive forgiveness and salvation
Through the sacrificial atoning death
Of that Babe born in Bethlehem, lo so many years ago

We will provoke irritation and disgust
In self-righteousness she won’t want to have anything to do with them
Much less walk in love and be quick to forgive
She’ll abandon her plan to share the Gospel with the ones bound for hell

Instead she’ll be quick to condemn and slow to pray
Focused on the sinner and their sin
Oblivious to the real enemy
The hater of every human soul

By Susan Bunts Wachtel
January 1, 2009

May we be mindful that there is only one true enemy. He desires that we be focused on the sin not the sinner, so disgusted and put off that we won’t think them worthy of sharing the Gospel. In doing so we walk in the sin of pride and self righteousness.

Condemning Power

When I start condemning and stop praying
That’s when I stop believing in a personal God
Who is able to save completely and transform lives

When does criticism become sin
When I’d prefer to stand in judgment
Rather than stand in love and pray

When I’d rather shake my finger and say shame on you
Than to look in the mirror and examine myself
See if I had contributed to the fall of another

By Susan Bunts Wachtel
December 29, 2008

Don’t You Dare

I was surprised at the passage that struck me as I read this week’s Bible Study Fellowship notes. I had read the passage many times before. Of course I knew that the actions of the money changers were wrong…but I never saw the gravity of it before.

Then Jesus went into the temple of God and drove out all those who bought and sold in the temple, and overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who sold doves. And He said to them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be called a house of prayer,’ but you have made it a ‘den of thieves.’” – Matthew 21:12-13

After Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem on His way to the cross…Jesus entered the temple. There he found wickedness and hard hearts of men seeking to take advantage of people who had come to obey the law and give a sacrificial offering for their sin.

And there they sat…smug…sanctimonious…ready to condemn and put a hurdle before the people who were coming before the Lord to confess their sin. While a lamb or a goat was an acceptable offering…God made a way for those who were too poor to afford that. Instead they could bring two turtle doves. The doves, lambs or goats had to be perfect without blemish or spot to be considered an acceptable offering. If they didn’t bring their offering from home…they could purchase it outside the temple.

But man…whose heart is deceitfully wicked above all things, sought to profit off the repentant sinners desiring to obey God and atone for their sins. The people would bring into the temple the animal or birds that would be their offering. The offering would be inspected…and if declared unacceptable…the person would be at the mercy of the money changers. If they wanted to have their sins cleansed they would have to get an animal there in the temple…one that had been deemed acceptable. The prices the money changers charged…were many times over what they would pay for an animal outside the temple.

People…for whom purchasing two turtle doves was a heavy sacrifice…would be forced to pay exorbitant rates so they might be cleansed from their sin as specified under the law.

While the Bible never states this…I wouldn’t be surprised that if after they deemed an animal unacceptable as a sacrifice…making pretty penny in the process of exchanging it for an acceptable one…I’ll bet you they turned right around and sold those animals and birds to someone else waiting in line to make atonement for their sins.

They profited from people who were weighed down by their sin…those who wanted to be cleansed.

But what about those people…who didn’t have the money to purchase an animal or bird from the money changes? What about them? Did they leave the temple with their head hung low…bearing the weight sin? Sin that would now not be washed away…as God had commanded?

These people extracted a heavier price for sin than God did. The money changers even kept people from coming to God. How many repentant sinners were kept away from God because of the money changer’s greed and judgmental, condemning attitude?

When I read that passage…I got to thinking about how I might keep people from coming to Jesus? Am I judgmental…because someone doesn’t dress in a manner I think is appropriate? Do I look down on someone…because they don’t know Jesus and are living a sinful lifestyle? Have I so soon forgotten my sinfulness which nailed Jesus to the cross to pay the penalty for my sin? Do I think that there are some sins that are easier to accept like lying or stealing? Do I think that child molester…or murderer…can’t be saved? Am I even relieved to think they are going to hell?

Sometimes it seems like the church…the body of Christ…which should be so loving and forgiving…is critical and condemning. Condemning of both sinners and each other. James talked about the tongue…and how difficult it is to tame. Even for a Christian. God tells us that out of the abundance of our heart the mouth speaks.

So while I might not be out there robbing the local liquor store…shooting up heroin…or stabbing someone to steal their purse…what am I doing with my mouth? Am I robbing someone of their reputation by telling others about their misstep? Am I high on the drug of conceit? Putting others down…so I might feel better about myself? Am I stabbing someone in the back…as I whisper about what they’ve done…to anyone who will listen?

Do I then try to be magnanimous and invite that person who I was just condemning to church? Do I tell them of the love and forgiveness of Jesus…but don’t demonstrate it in my actions and words? Do I forget so easily that God has taken all my sins…sealed them in a bag and tossed them in the farthest reaches of the sea? As Pastor Philip De Courcy said, “Never to be seen again!” Do I desire that others…even the vilest offender be forgiven? Or am I self satisfied…pleased that God saved me but with precious little concern for others?

That’s not to say…that some things shouldn’t be condemned. But perhaps I would do better to walk in grace and love. Condemn the sin…and reach out to the sinner with love, grace and the Good News of the Gospel that Jesus saves!

I can still remember my beloved Pastor Chuck Obremski passionately warning us, “Don’t you ever keep someone from coming to Jesus!” I think those words were uttered in sermon about the realities of hell. How permanent…total and all consuming hell is. That we are never to think that someone can’t be saved. From the vilest offender…like a murderer, child molester, or rapist…to the person who appears good on the outside…but inside is filled with deceit and hatred.

With man it is impossible. But with God…All things are possible!