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Can you see God at work when you sin? Here’s a verse that can help you answer that question.

“For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death” 2 Corinthians 7:10

The process for the true believer goes like this: Sin is followed by conviction, which is the work of the Holy Spirit bringing us to an awareness that we have sinned. This creates in us a “godly sorrow”, which is a sense of spiritual upheaval, truly being sorry at having grieved and offended our holy God. Next comes repentance, which includes confession, or agreement with God that we have sinned, along with a settled purpose to turn from the sin to pursue a course of righteousness. This process continuously repeated leads to salvation, both in the sense of progressively breaking the power of sin (sanctification) and bringing us finally to complete victory over sin (glorification).

The unbeliever may have a sense that he has done wrong, but, without the intervention of the Holy Spirit, there is only regret and remorse, not producing repentance leading to salvation. Note the response of Judas Iscariot to his realization that he had betrayed innocent blood. He was crushed by the weight of his sin, but there was no repentance, only “the sorrow of the world” which “produces death”.

So a recognition of God at work when we sin, based on 2 Corinthians 7:10, is a good ground of assurance. Though a painful process, it serves as a confirmation that we belong to Him!