We may never had any personal contact, but there is something 100% correct, which I know about you. According to the Bible, you are a sinner, as am I. But the fact that sin is universal, does not diminish its severity, nor its harm to our soul and to the soul of others whom we sin against.
Here are some Bible-based synonyms for sin: “a missing,” ` “perversity”, “transgression,” “evil,” “miss the mark,” “transgression” with a suggestion of violence, “injustice,” and “unrighteousness”. Without any stretch of the imagination, the root meaning of the word “sin” is doing evil against others or ourselves. Therefore, sin is not a trivial matter to God nor to the ones whom we sin against
Of course, we can create legitimate reasons for our “modified road rage”, correct? The other driver is an idiot, or impaired. We have asked our children to do something a gazillion times, so some choice words will help them to learn to obey. Some internet troll is heckling us just to “annoy us off” with a perverse sense of humor.
It is very easy for us to self-justify our own sinful responses while we quickly condemn others for doing unto us what we do unto them. It is having a double standard; but honesty compels us to admit that sometimes we are more often sinning against others than others sin against us. Really, it does not matter if we are a victim or creating victims because sinning causes wrong to happen, and that is due to the horrid definition of sin as seen above.
So the issue of sin is not so much concerned with the specific acts of sin for they can be dealt with; but rather the issue with sin is how we react to the subsequent guilt that sin produces. For example, we who are veterans all trained to be killers. We trained under live fire, we shot at human silhouettes, and some of us have had another human in our sight picture, squeezing down on the trigger. Assuredly, those vets in the last scene involving another human have a different reaction to killing than do our fellow vets who have no combat experience.
Years ago on a home video TV show, I watched as a father questioned his three-year old son about what happened to the chocolate cake sitting on the kitchen table. Someone evidently ate some of it, and the boy was making up reasons that the cat, or the neighbor’s dog was the guilty cake eater. But what the little boy did not understand was that his mouth and cheeks were covered in chocolate icing, indicating that he did the dirty deed.
Patiently the father sat with the child to have him admit his crime, but the child would not have any part of admitting guilt. The denial of guilt of doing a sin is as old as the Garden of Eden, when God first asked Adam why he ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and of evil.
Genesis 3:11 He said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?”
12 The man said, “The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate”
13 Then the Lord God said to the woman, “What is this that you have done?” The woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.”
Adam did the same thing, blaming God for giving Eve to him, and Eve blamed God for creating the serpent. That is why one of the most horrid consequences of the guilt of sin is that it places a barrier between God and us. It is far more serious than chocolate icing on the face, and that is why I call that sort of consequence of sin, “bad guilt”
The most endearing part of that little boy and his father is that his dad can see the evidence of disobedience on his son’s face and he goes along with the fictitious explanation of his son.
Whenever we act as if God our Father in is fooled by our emphatic denials and tall tales we build a big wall between us. God is not fooled; we fool ourselves, and for those reasons that sort of guilt reaction is called “bad guilt” because it separates God and us and we foolishly believe that the self-created distance between God and us is less painful than the admission of guilt, and seeking of a restored relationship with God. That is a sulfurous lie because it attacks the attributes of a Forgiving God..
It is a lie because the assumption behind the statement is false; it assumes that we did something so spectacularly heinous that we placed ourselves beyond the possibility of God forgiving us for any reason. Jesus stated that there is only one unpardonable sin, but the bottom line in that sin is that you wonder if you have committed it, and the thought that you could do it causes you to shudder, you have not done that. In order to do that, your heart must be as stone cold hard and dead as was the heart of the Pharaoh before Moses.
Why do we attempt to hide our sin? It is our pride. We care more about “looking good than we care about having a loving relationship with a God who loves us unconditionally, and eternally.
King David experienced that in his song of penance:
Psalm 32: 3 When I kept silence, my bones waxed old through my roaring all the day long.
4 For day and night thy hand was heavy upon me…
Paul must have gone through the same experience as David in his three-years-long transformation from Saul to the Apostle Paul:
Romans 8:31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?
32 He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?
33 Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies.
34 Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.
35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?
36 As it is written,
“For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.”
37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us
If you are familiar with the lives of these men, you know that both were murderers of innocent people. Both had a huge ego that demanded satisfaction of carnal desires, and Paul was an unrelenting persecutor of God’s children. Have you done anything such as they did? If God forgave them, so also can He forgive you.
You see, That sort of guilt is properly called “good guilt” because it drives us to our knees so we can having the loving relationship with our Holy God, Who called us unto Himself, and wants us to stay close to him. However too often we act like that three years-old boy with chocolate icing on his face. We want to hide from God
After the prophet Nathaniel confronted David for ordering the murder of her husband, and their adultery, we can imagine the heart-breaking pain that he felt as he penned this:
Psalm 51:1 Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love;according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions.
2 Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin!
3 For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me.
4 Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight, so that you may be justified in your words and blameless in your judgment.
Isn’t that the sort of relationship that you want to have with your Creator? Then do not be an Adam and Eve, hiding from your sin. Acknowledge it, and He will ALWAYS forgive. Look at how David felt after he confessed his sin to God, and knew God unconditionally forgave him:
Psalm 32:4 For day and night your hand was heavy upon me; my strength was dried up as by the heat of summer. Selah
5 I acknowledged my sin to you, and I did not cover my iniquity; I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,” and you forgave the iniquity of my sin. Selah
6 Therefore let everyone who is godly offer prayer to you at a time when you may be found; surely in the rush of great waters, they shall not reach him.
That is why King David was a man after God’s own heart. He knew he sinned, he confessed his sins, God forgave all his sins (see verse 2) You see dear friends, when you know that all your sins are forgiven, you are happy, but when you build up a wall between God and your sins, then God’s hand is heavy on you.
That is why it is important to know the difference between bad guilt that separates God and us, and good guilt which reconciles God and us.