Pastor Bankens lived in Louisiana until he was forty years old, attended church at Apostolic Temple Pentecostal Church, pastored by Dr. M. D and Dr. R.D. Treece. He was an evangelist about twelve years, pastored in Rome, Georgia five years, pastored New Chapel UPC, Collins, Mississippi, for almost twelve years. Pastor Bankens is now living in Sulphur, Louisiana and is preaching out as he is again attending Apostolic Temple under his Pastor Rick Treece, Pastor Bankens is ordained by UPCI..
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The humiliation that we experience from shame, is often so unbearable. But shame is something we all have to deal with. Often we deal with shame most of our life.
Before Ammon brutally forced his sister, Tamar, into an unspeakable act of sin, she pleaded with him to please restrain himself, crying out, “Where could I take my shame?” (II Samuel 13:13 NKJV). Tamar understood the social stigmas of her day therefore, she had a keen insight into the consequences of Amon’s dark urges, knowing they spelled disaster and shame for her. “Then Tamar put ashes on her head and tore her robe of many colors and went away crying bitterly…So Tamar remained desolate in her brother Absalom’s house.” (II Samuel 13:19-20 NKJV).
Of all our human emotions, bitter shame may be the worst. There is that degrading feeling that comes with the decades of disapproval that we feel from the judgmental, castigation of other people. Yes, we have begun to internalize the shame they are heaping on us to the point that we internalize these feelings as reality and take them as our conviction of being unworthy human beings. “If you all disrespect me and hate me, surely I should disrespect and hate myself.”
Tamar was the victim of abuse, but shame blurred the lines of her guilt and unworthiness. Because of this vicious abuse by her brother, she realize people would look at her differently. In fact many people would look down on her and blame her for this vicious act of her brother. Many people would speculate that she could have stopped him, and that she was probably the seducer.
She now found herself living in open shame, as a used commodity, she lost all her rights to a maiden’s dream for an honorable marriage, utterly ruined by the abusive nature of another. For the rest of her life she would have to carry the guilt and the shame that was so devastating.
I want to be very careful with my statements here, and I want people to understand the way that I am issuing these statements at this point:
Some religious cultures (even so many Apostolic churches) employ shaming others to preserve their personal holiness culture. So often members are openly disrespected by other members for violating protocol, or holiness standards. Often people are ostracized until they leave our churches and groups.
But even our overall society has a way of publicly shaming people for even petty reasons. Today therapists work hard to identify the many types of shaming – including – looks shaming, fat shaming, body shaming, mommy shaming, parent shaming, children shaming, dress shaming, religious shaming, etc.
There is a strong pushback against shaming in society, but too often it is only against those that shame things they themselves are doing. But shaming others has been gaining so much momentum in this hour. The damages are great and the effects are so overwhelming. There are so many members of our society that are choosing isolation, many are self-inflicting themselves with open wounds and even going so far as to commit suicide.
Jesus, fraternized with many people that society of His day considered unworthy, like the publicans, sinners and outcasts.
Luke 7:37-39 King James Version (KJV)
37 And, behold, a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster box of ointment,
38 And stood at his feet behind him weeping, and began to wash his feet with tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment.
39 Now when the Pharisee which had bidden him saw it, he spake within himself, saying, This man, if he were a prophet, would have known who and what manner of woman this is that toucheth him: for she is a sinner.
But Jesus Christ attitude can best be seen in His response to the woman that was caught in the very act of adultery.
John 8:11 (b) KJV,
… Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more.
So many Holy Ghost filled saints of God that are suffering from shame, can tell you when they were forgiven of their sins. But even knowing their sins are forgiven, shame continues to overwhelm and persists in their life. They often make statements, “If Jesus died for my sins, why do I feel so overwhelmed with shame and unworthiness?”
Certain egregious sins, such as capital crimes, abortion, or deeply hurting others especially loved ones and family members so often carry with them deep repercussions of shame that often have to be dealt with after repentance. These things must be dealt with until we get beyond them and no long allow them to rule our life.
These feelings are often transferred to us and they stem from the hatreds and bigotries of others. Our parents, guardians, or even from our spouse. These transferred feelings place the pressures of shame and guilt on our life and we have to shake loose of them.
I feel it is important for us to understand, it is so important for us to know that the blood of Jesus Christ not only dealt with the legality of sin, but also with the guilt and shame brought on by sin.
Isaiah 53:10 KJV,
10 Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.
The phrase, “an offering for sin,” has been interpreted in other verses of the Bible as a guilt offering. In other words, God interdicted the emotion of sin as well as the fact of sin. Transgressors must appropriate the full power and authority of the blood of Jesus Christ to themselves. Jesus endured the shame of the cross precisely to take our sins away and to set us free from guilt and shame.
If you are having trouble dealing with shame and forgiving yourself, you must resort to the Word of God. The great Apostle Paul directly addressed the problem in his epistle to the Colossians.
Colossians 2:13-14(NKJV)13 And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses,
14 having wiped out the [a]handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.
This makes the cross of Jesus Christ personal to all of us. We must see our sin, our shame, and our guilt crucified with Jesus, and His blood covering all our transgressions.
Forgiving yourself cannot be completed by willpower, positive mental thinking, or any form of self-help alone. You must intentionally and purposefully grasp the blood of Jesus, not just as a doctrinal creed, but as an actual personal appropriation.
12 Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption.
13 For if the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh,
14 how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?
God does not value you and I just as warm bodies that He saves just to come sit and take our place on a pew in our local church and accomplish nothing. He sees each and every one of us as unique souls that He is seeking to save and fellowship with, here and now. We were just sinners, He washed our sins away purified and consecrated us to Himself and justified us in His name and with His Spirit.
1 Corinthians 6:11(NKJV)11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.