Shame is guilt coupled with a sense of legitimate contempt and rejection; it’s feeling despised and rejected (Is 53:3) due to inexcusable moral failure. Shame claims to be separating us from respect, love and acceptance, making us feel exposed, vulnerable and defenseless. It’s extremely powerful, crushing soul and spirit; many prefer death to enduring their shame. Perhaps it’s why hateful rampages often end in suicide.
Those who accused and mocked Yeshua on the cross understood this force, trying to heap shame upon His agony (Ps 22:7-8), but He endured by despising the shame. (He 12:2) He looked beyond the lies and found safety in the eternal faithfulness and justice of His Father.
When we’re walking in the light we enjoy fellowship with God (1Jn 1:7), knowing we’re accepted in the beloved (Ep 1:6), so there’s no need to feel ashamed when we’re judged by men (Ps 119:80); by faith we can receive accusation as a growth opportunity.
But for those who aren’t walking with God, shame and everlasting contempt is their destiny (Da 12:2), an eternal, constant reality, a second death from which there will be no end, no escape.