Jesus Christ » Jesus And Salvation
Sin and Accountability
Below is a study of sin from the biblical perspective.
Romans 3:23 - "For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God." Does anyone understand the depth of sin and why it must be judged? We seriously misjudge the depth of sin as God sees it and foolishly accuse God of being unfair and worse!
James 1:14 - “But every man is tempted when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.” Satan can't draw a response unless the lust is already entrenched in us.
What is Sin? - 1 John 3:4 - “Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law, for sin is the transgression of the law.” God's laws were made to protect us from ourselves because the human nature within us loves evil and needs God's direction.
Romans 14:23 - “Whatsoever is not of faith is sin.” - What is being said here is that we are to live and act our entire life with faith in God in every area of our lives. We pray before we eat, we pray before we go on a trip and we pray about many things in life because we trust that God is interested in everything that has to do with us.
Revelation 20:12 - “And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened, and another book was opened; and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books according to their works.” - This is a description of the final judgment when all men, women and children of all time will be called to stand before a holy God and be judged for their lives before the entire universe. The books here are not defined, but I believe books are necessary because the books will list the names and the sins of those who died without Christ as their Savior. The book spoken of here would then be just a list of names because their sins are forgiven and forgotten as the scripture declares, and they have been accepted by God through the sacrifice of Christ on Calvary. The single book is called the “Book Of Life.” See Also Revelation 20:15.
How would you reply to someone who says, "I am not a bad person. I don't steal or hurt people and I never killed anyone! I believe I will go to Heaven when I die! Why would God send a good person to Hell? Psalm 39:5 , Isaiah 64:6 , Jeremiah 17:9 , Romans 3:10-12 and Romans 3:23 should give you a start. But there are even more scriptures in both testaments that should be convincing when it comes to the sinful condition of all mankind.
A strong evidence of our sinful nature is found at the earliest stages of life. Someone once wrote that babies left to themselves to do what they want with no correction or direction from birth to adulthood would grow up to be the most vile heathen to ever live. Consider that babies think of nobody but themselves. Sweet as they seem to us, when they want something they will do whatever it takes to get it, and they don't care who they have to bother to get what they want or what time of the day or night it might be. When a new born baby is hungry the baby will cry or scream or whatever it takes to get the parent's attention. When a baby is wet the same applies. It doesn't matter if it is three o'clock in the morning or right after dad and mom just laid down to sleep, because the baby wants its needs met NOW! Make the baby wait and there is hysteria through the entire house and everyone suffers for it. Now imagine this behavior carried into adulthood and throughout a person's entire life without being corrected by anyone. The results would be evil beyond what we might want to believe, and they would be horrible to behold!
An Excellent Exposition bringing clarity to
Romans 5 and verse 21 in particular
Romans 5:21 KJV - “That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.”
Paul doesn't try to deny the existence of evil (sin), but he fully admits to sins in their deepest,widest, most melancholy extent, just like a doctor admits to the extent and ravages of a disease he hopes to cure. However, Christianity is not responsible for the evil in the world. It did not introduce those evils. It acknowledges their existence as a matter of sober and melancholy fact pertaining to the entire human race from Adam until the present. Christianity is no more to blame for the introduction and extent of sin than the science of medicine is responsible for the introduction of diseases in the world. Like science, Christianity finds a state of wide spread evils already existing, and like that science, it is strictly a remedial system (A system with the cure).
Whether Christianity is true or false, the evils of sin still exist just as the evils of disease exist,whether the science of medicine be well-founded or not. Further, it doesn't make a difference in the existence of evil, whether Christianity is true or false. If the Bible could be proven to impose on mankind it would not prove that men are not sinners. If the work of Christ could be shown to be a deception, it would not annihilate sin nor would it prove that man has not fallen into sin. The fact would still remain a fact as universal and melancholy as
it is under the truth of the Christian scriptures, and a fact which the unbeliever should be just as much concerned about his accounting for as the Christian believer.
Christianity presents a remedy for sin, and Christians certainly should rejoice that the
remedy is sufficient to meet all the evils and recover our world that is alienated from God. They should rejoice that it is destined to raise the human race up to life and peace and Heaven. In that provision we should triumph indeed as a doctor would rejoice in triumphing over disease. Christians should triumph in the ascendancy of their plan of salvation over all the evils of the fall of mankind. While Christians are rejoicing the unbelievers, the deist, the pagan and the scoffer will have to contend with evil because their systems cannot relieve or remove them. They can only look ahead to the chilly reign of sin and death like men who
pant and struggle and die under the visitation of disease because they will not apply the proper remedies of medicine, but choose instead to leave themselves to the unchecked ravages of disease or settle for quackery in a vain attempt to check it. Barnes Notes On The New Testament revised by C R Lord 4/15/2016
David, King of Israel in Psalms 51:5 wrote, "Behold I was shapen in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me." Every baby ever born could testify to that same thing in their lives if they could grasp that concept. As adults they would have to admit to their sin if they were honest enough to admit it after they understand the reality of sin in the human heart.
Proverbs 13:6 - "Righteousness keepeth him that is upright in the way, but wickedness overthroweth the sinner."
It doesn't take a genius to understand that we have a strong bent to evil! The evidence within our hearts convicts us of it!
Psalms 7:11 - “God judgeth the righteous, and God is angry with the wicked every day.”
Does this mean all the wicked? Since the scriptures make it clear that God is no respecter of persons or, in other words, he doesn't play favorites, the answer to this question must be yes.
Everyone who is ever born is endowed with a conscience so that we know when we are violating any of God's laws. Children know instinctively when they misbehave as evidenced by their actions. This is an undeniable proof of our sin nature at work in us! Acts 24:16, Romans 2:13-15 , Hebrews 9:13-14 and 1 Peter 3:15-17 speak of our conscience.
While we inherited a sin nature as descendants of Adam and Eve we cannot blame them for how we respond to the temptations of our sinful nature. God has given us the ability to have victory over our sinful ways through the blood of Christ, but we still go on in sin anyway and violate our conscience and resist the convictions of the Holy Spirit. The drawing of God's Spirit is seeking to deliver us from wickedness and desires that will destroy us, but until we see our need of the Savior, we will continue on in sin even if in doing so we are wrecking our minds, bodies, and souls and destroying the lives of those we love.
It is because of this incredible resistance to what is right that man must be held to account by God on the day of judgment! If God had not made a way to escape our evil nature we could complain that it was unjust for us to be born with it, but the blood of Christ shed on Calvary gives us the promise of forgiveness and power over our wicked nature both now and all throughout eternity! We should be deeply thankful that God is long suffering toward us and not vindictive as we are when others offend us. His mercy is renewed every morning as written in Lamentations 3:22-23.
Do you remember when you were a little child and your mom and dad told you not to do certain things, and you went ahead and did them anyway? Do you remember looking around to see if anyone was looking? Before or after you did the deed wasn't there something telling you that what you were doing was wrong? Everyone knows that it was their conscience convicting them. When we violate our own conscience we sin against God, because the conviction comes from the conscience he gave us to warn each of us to do what is right.
When the consequences of our actions catch up with us we suddenly realize that what we learned about doing the wrong thing was for a good reason, but then it was too late. The answer is written below.
I Corinthians 6:9-10 - lists things that keep mankind from inheriting God's Kingdom
Galatians 5:19-21 - Gives the works of the flesh which are all evil.
II Timothy 3:1-5 - Speaks of the wickedness abounding in the last days.
Mark 7:20-23 - Speaks of that which comes out of us
As you go through these lists above write down the ones you believe might apply to you. Consider the importance of dealing with these sins. Does the strong word "abomination"
strike a chord in your heart when mentioned in the first list? If not, why? The words that call attention to evil in our lives are not there to condemn us, but rather to convict us so we can repent of that sin. Why would we want to continue in anything that would hurt or destroy us spiritually? What is it in us that makes us run past all warning signals that our conscience sends our way and do what we know is wrong even though we are convicted to stop doing it. Perhaps reading Paul's account of his struggles in Romans 7:14-25 would help us see the inherent sinfulness of our nature and also the victory that was purchased for us in a better light! It should also remind us that even though Paul was a great man prior to his salvation in a religious sense, and a great apostle after his salvation, he was still dealing with weakness just like all of us!
Consider this great apostle of our Lord Jesus Christ and his struggles against his own nature! Think of Moses, Elijah, Thomas or Peter. What moved these men to fail God? Each was, in his own right a powerful man of God, and yet each one also was found to be weak in one way or the other, and all of them gave in to either excuse-making, unnecessary fear, materialism, lies or other sins. David the King of Israel was called "a man after God's own heart," but he was guilty of adultery and murder and was confronted by a prophet and called to repentance. His own response to his failure can be found in Psalms 51:10-12. We are all weak, and we should rejoice in our weakness as Paul did because it is in our weakness that the power and mercy of God is manifested to us and all who will love and trust him!
Our weakness is not an excuse for our sin, but rather a confession of how very much we must rely on God and his grace and mercy toward us every day. In John 15:5 we understand how very much we need Jesus. As we grow and mature in our walk with the Lord this statement will become more and more real to us as we are honest about our inability to be righteous in our own selves and honest about our constant need of Jesus to overcome all that comes our way in life! It takes the pressure of religious performance off those whose faith is in Him.