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Temporary shame
Pastor Mike Novotny
by Pastor Mike Novotny
February 17, 2024

While shame is a good thing (Jeremiah 6:15), God doesn’t want it to last too long. Just ask Eve. A few summers ago, I snapped a picture in the Metropolitan Museum of Art of a famous sculpture of Eve by Rodin, the guy who also created The Thinker. Rodin captured Eve just having eaten the forbidden fruit, burying her head in her bronze arms. Which from God’s perspective was good.

Can you imagine if Eve felt no shame? If she brought disease and death, COVID and cancer, anger and abuse into God’s perfect world and yet was proud of it? Shame was essential in softening her heart and opening her ears for a message that could deal with her shame.

Which is what God gave her. The first promise of Jesus from Genesis 3:15 would later be explained by the author of Hebrews: “For the joy set before him [Jesus] endured the cross, scorning its shame” (12:2). By enduring the shame of crucifixion, Jesus made shame a temporary experience for every Christian.

Through the cross, sin no longer defines us. We don’t have to consider ourselves an embarrassment to God or live in the humiliation of the sins of our past. Instead, through Jesus, we realize that our shame has been taken away and our new identity is secure—we are children of God, sons and daughters whom the Father is not ashamed to call his own.