Part 3 of 4 – God Never Said That… Series

In today’s world of tolerance, people are offended when anyone says their behavior is wrong or sinful. The idea of sin has been watered down and sanitized. People have misconceptions about sin, not realizing that sin is real and has serious consequences.

Misconception #1: I’m not a bad person.

People commonly think, “I’m not perfect, I make mistakes. But I’m not really a bad person.” But this is simply not true.

1 John 1:8 If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth.

We can always find someone worse than us. But the standard of comparison is not others, but a holy and perfect God.

Romans 3:10 …No one is righteous—not even one.

None of us is righteous. We are all “bad people” because we are all sinful in the eyes of God.

Misconception #2: All sin is the same.

People like to say, “Who are you to judge me? What I’m doing is no worse than what you’re doing.” But the Bible doesn’t teach that all sin is the same. All unforgiven sin is the same in one sense: it all leads to eternal death.

Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.

Beyond that, different sins have different consequences. How we live influence consequences on earth, and not all those consequences are the same.

1 Corinthians 6:18 Run from sexual sin! No other sin so clearly affects the body as this one does. For sexual immorality is a sin against your own body.

There are also different consequences of sin in heaven. There are rewards in heaven for how we live. Finally, how we live influences punishment in hell.

Luke 20:47 [The religious teachers] shamelessly cheat widows out of their property and then pretend to be pious by making long prayers in public. Because of this, they will be severely punished.

So there might be less severe punishment for some and more severe punishment for others. So how we live matters on earth and in eternity. All sin is not the same. It does matter what we do.

Misconception #3: Since I’ve already done it, I might as well keep doing it.

Once we sin, it’s easy to think to give in again. But it doesn’t make sense for a Christian to think this way, because we have a different relationship with sin than before.

Romans 6:1-2 Well then, should we keep on sinning so that God can show us more and more of his wonderful grace? Of course not! Since we have died to sin, how can we continue to live in it?

Should we keep sinning because we know God will forgive anyway? You know better than that! God has something much better for you. Spiritual maturity is so much more than knowledge. It’s being transformed by God’s grace through the Holy Spirit living in you. We can overcome the sins that control us rather than walking back into those sins again and again.

Sin is progressive. If you continue to do it, it becomes habitual and gains momentum in your life until you bring it into the light. Don’t minimize sin. It will harden your heart and kill your intimacy with God. You don’t have to give in to sin over and over again.

The good news is that Jesus is a friend of sinners.

Jesus did not come for the healthy but for the sick. It doesn’t matter what you’re trapped by or how long you’ve been there. Jesus is the way out of sin. Sin does cost us, but Jesus is greater than our sin.

1 John 1:8-9  If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth. But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.

Until you see the seriousness of your own sin, you won’t know that you need a savior. But we have a savior – Jesus – who gives us power and freedom over sin.

Talk About It…

  • Watch the video together or invite someone to summarize the topic.
  • What is your initial reaction to this video? Do you disagree with any of it? What jumped out at you?
  • Share some of your pet peeves that might lead to sinful actions.
  • Are there any victimless sins? Explain your answer.
  • Which of the three misconceptions are you most likely to buy into, and why?
  • In what ways have you experienced the progressive nature of sin?
  • When you fight to overcome sin, what behaviors help you win?
  • What does God want you to do differently to overcome some sin that has held you hostage?
  • Write a personal action step based on this conversation.