How Does God Want Me to Feel?

#1 2 Timothy 3:1-2 (For the full passage, read 3:1-17)

But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy...

It is easy to find people who are lovers of themselves. This sin manifests in different ways such as people who believe they're always right to people who feel like they're more important than anyone else. Society will tell you that you should focus on things such as your happiness and your success, but none of these things should be the perspective of a Christian, who should be living for God's glory alone.

#2 Romans 3:10-12 (For the full passage, read 3:9-20)

As it is written: "There is none righteous, no, not one; there is none who understands; there is none who seeks after God. They have all turned aside; they have together become unprofitable; there is none who does good, no, not one."

God doesn't tell us in the Bible that we're wonderful and special all on our own. In fact, we are told quite the opposite. Sadly, pastors who preach sermons that make everyone feel good aren't preaching the truth of the Bible. The truth is, we are all terrible, worthless, wretched sinners apart from the saving grace of God. When we properly understand that, though, the good news of the gospel seems even more amazing!

#3 Matthew 23:12, 33 (For the full passage, read 23:1-39)

"And whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted. ... Serpents, brood of vipers! How can you escape the condemnation of hell?"

Jesus Himself warns us against exalting ourselves, or of thinking more highly of ourselves than we should (see also Romans 12:3). If you think Jesus was weak, soft-spoken, and mild-mannered when He walked this earth, I would encourage you to go back and read the four gospels--because He most certainly was not. He frequently warned against the dangers of hell and He rebuked people who were filled with pride.

#4 Isaiah 64:6 (For the full passage, read 64:1-7)

But we are all like an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are like filthy rags; we all fade as a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.

In our sinful state as human beings, we all have some degree of pride and we fail to see just how sinful we are compared to a perfect, holy God Whom we truly cannot even begin to comprehend! Read this verse carefully. The prophet Isaiah writes that our righteous deeds--the good things that we do--are like filthy rags in God's sight, unless we have been saved by His grace and we are doing things that bring Him glory.

#5 Romans 5:6-8 (For the full passage, read 5:6-21)

For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

It is a common misconception, even among Christians, that Jesus came to die for our sins because we were worth it. We absolutely weren't worth it--but that's what makes the gospel such good news! We add nothing to God, and Jesus didn't have to die for sin. But He did, in order to demonstrate to us just how great God's love is.

#6 1 Timothy 1:14-15 (For the full passage, read 1:12-17)

And the grace of our Lord was exceedingly abundant, with faith and love which are in Christ Jesus. This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am chief.

The apostle Paul, who wrote this letter to Timothy, recognized how great of a sinner he was before our holy God. Do you recognize your great sin? Even if you're a pretty good person by human standards, none of us even comes close God's perfect standard.

#7 Psalm 7:11, 25:11 (For the full passage, read Psalm 7 & 25)

God is a just judge, and God is angry with the wicked every day. ... For Your name's sake, O Lord, pardon my iniquity, for it is great.

Because God is perfect, and because He is a just, righteous judge, He can't just overlook our sin, and say everything is okay when it isn't, just to make us feel better about ourselves. God forgives sins not because of anything we have done, but to bring glory to Himself. The Bible doesn't build up our self-esteem; it reveals how wicked and sinful each one of us is. But that makes the good news of salvation even more amazing!