What’s the best way to clear a guilty conscience? Jesus answered the question in a story He shared to illustrate the effects of unbelief on the heart. A demon abandoned his residence in a man’s heart to find a more suitable place to dwell. He searched to no avail. So the demon decided to return to his original host. When he returned, the man’s heart was clean-swept and vacant. He thought such accommodations were too good to keep to himself, so he brought seven other guests (all more unruly than himself) to share the abode with him.

The empty heart is prey to every form of evil. It’s not enough for Christians to confess their sinful thoughts and actions. Vain also are our attempts to reform our behavior. The human condition is so frail that we need something good with which to replace the evil. We must bow to the Lord God Almighty and allow Him to fill the void within us.

Maybe you’ve committed a shameful sin since you first trusted Christ and feel guilty. Perhaps you battle more “acceptable” sins, but are overcome with remorse after fighting a losing battle. You know Christ has forgiven you, but you still lack peace. Replace your feelings of failure with promises from God’s Word. Remind yourself of the Father’s love and His ongoing work in your life. Let Christ fill your heart today.

Devotional by Pastor Jim Scudder, Jr.