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Let me play mind reader for a moment: A voice has been telling you that you’re a spiritual failure. You’re never going to break that bad habit. In fact, you gave in to it yesterday, and you probably will again today. You also didn’t work hard enough last week, and let’s see… God won’t bless you because of your past. You disappointed your parents. Your marriage doesn’t have a chance, and you’ve done a lousy job raising your kids.

How am I doing? If that kind of thinking describes you, then welcome to the devil’s workout club. You’re officially stuck on a treadmill of sin. You find yourself utterly unable to praise the Lord. It’s all my fault, you think. How can I possibly offer up praise to God? I make the same dumb mistake over and over again. He won’t want to hear a hypocrite like me. The treadmill is at full speed now, and you’re exhausting yourself in cycle after cycle of sin, guilt, repentance—sin, guilt, repentance. You know you’re running a race to nowhere, but you can’t jump off.

The answer to guilt is found in the very first chapter of Romans:

For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “The just shall live by faith” (Romans 1:16-17).

Paul makes a fundamental truth very clear. The good news of Christ is essentially a revelation of righteousness. It is first a revelation of God’s righteousness in Christ, and second a revelation of your righteousness in Him. Understand that truth, and you will realize the power of God over sin.

This is an excerpt from “The Power of Praise and Worship” by Dr. Terry Law.