Picking and Choosing Sin
Daily Bible Reading – Deuteronomy 28,29; Galatians 6
Today’s Key Passage – Galatians 6:12-18
Near the end of Paul’s letter to the Galatians, he made one last attempt to explain that they were being led astray by false teaching. In today’s key passage, Paul states that whether they were circumcised or uncircumcised really did not mean anything – what truly mattered most was that they were a new creation in Christ. In addition, Paul makes an interesting point that I would like to focus on today. He states that, “Not even those who are circumcised obey the law, yet they want you to be circumcised that they may boast about your flesh.” (Galatians 6:13) See, the Judaizers were making a big deal about the fact that the Gentiles in Galatia were uncircumcised, but all the while, they were not following all of the other laws from the Old Testament. The Judaizers were determining what was considered an important law that needed to be followed versus an unimportant law that did not need to be followed. In effect, the Judaizers were picking and choosing what was considered a sin.
While it is easy for us to look back now on the Judaizers and realize what they were doing and condemn them for it, the sad truth is that most of us do the same thing from time to time. We have all had moments where we have categorized sins. For most people, sins are viewed in much the same way that the world views crime. There are major crimes and minor crimes. We all know that in most places around the world, murder is a serious crime. Running a stop sign, on the other hand, is typically not that big of a deal. The problem here is that it is relatively easy to take that same system of categorizing crimes and apply it to sin. When we do that, we think that killing someone is a “major” sin but hating someone is only a “minor” sin, for example. Most people agree that theft is a sin, but they easily justify the telling of a “little white lie”. Likewise, most people agree that adultery is a sin, but they fail to see that lusting after another person or looking at pornography are also sins. When we attempt to categorize sin or choose what is acceptable, we miss the whole point.
The simple truth is this – God does not distinguish between “major” sins and “minor” sins. To a perfect God, all sin is sin and He abhors it. In fact, because of His infinite perfection, He cannot even stand to be around sin in any way. The Bible does not say that the wages of some sin is death. It does not say that the wages of really bad sin is death. It simply says, “For the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23) All sin. Period. I understand that what I am saying is not the “popular” view of sin. The “popular” view is that some sin is not that bad and that as long as we try really hard to be a good person we will be OK and will make it to Heaven. This is an easy message to preach and is well received by the audience, but it is simply not Biblically sound. The wages of sin is death. Does that sound harsh? Does that message seem gloomy? Does it seem like no matter how hard we try we will never be able to live up to God’s perfect standard? If so, then guess what – that is the whole point! It is harsh. It is gloomy. We cannot live up to God’s prefect standard on our own. It does not matter how hard we try, it will never happen. Paul could not do it. Peter could not do it. Mother Teresa could not do it. Only Jesus lived a perfect and blameless life. He came here because He knew that none of us could be perfect. He knew that all of us were going to fall short of God’s standard, so He lived a perfect life for us. He allowed Himself to die for us. He allowed Himself to be buried for us, and three days later, He was raised from the dead, and now He sits at the right hand of God and intercedes for us. His perfection makes all of us look perfect in the eyes of God. We are not saved by what we have done or what we can do; we are saved by what He has already done. We are saved by grace through faith in Jesus Christ. Do not allow yourself to fall into the trap of categorizing sin. Understand that all sin is the same in the eyes of God, and put your faith and your focus where it belongs – on Jesus.
During your Bible reading today, what “key passages” stood out to you? Leave a comment below to share what God is showing you about His Word today.
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Posted on March 15, 2013, in 09 - Galatians and tagged Bible, Christian, Daily Bible, Daily Devotional, Epistle to the Galatians, God, God's Character, Jesus, Judaizers, Paul, Questioning God, Religion, Sin. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.