20 Huge Words — #4 Sin and Fall

This Sun­day morn­ing in CrossTrain­ing, we dis­cussed the Huge Word, Fall. It is the short­est word we will dis­cuss in this seri­ous, but its ram­i­fi­ca­tions in the Chris­t­ian life are one of the biggest than we will look at!

We must con­sider in our study of  sin how we view sin and how we respond to it. Here are a few com­mon sin­ful views and responses to sin in a believ­ers life.

As you read this, exam­ine your heart and ask your God to reveal if you are view­ing sin His way, and if you are respond­ing to sin His way!

Sin­ful Views of Sin

We can sin­fully view sin as sim­ply break­ing the rules of God.
Though sin does include this, we sadly fail to see that sin is fun­da­men­tally vio­lat­ing the rela­tion­ship with God. Thus, we can reduce faith down to rule-keeping rather than a lov­ing rela­tion­ship with God that under­lies, empow­ers, and enables obedience.

Since Jesus died for their sins, you don’t need to fight for holi­ness and repent when you fail.
What must be real­ized is that, because Jesus died for your sins, you join him by putting every sin to death.

A wrong view that believes unless you con­fess every sin, you will wind up in hell, because all of your sins would not be for­given.
The truth is that, because Jesus died for all of our sins, we can and should repent of all the sins we are aware of while real­iz­ing that our imper­fec­tion includes an imper­fect sen­si­tiv­ity to our sins, caus­ing us to be unaware of all of our transgressions.

As long as the sin­ner is nice and has a “good heart,” God will not be dis­pleased by their sin.
But, God is con­cerned both with our inner life and our outer life. More­over, since our life is sim­ply the out­work­ing of our heart, it is non­sen­si­cal to con­sider some­one as hav­ing a good heart but bad actions.

The view that sin and fun are syn­ony­mous, and there­fore you can con­tinue in sin in the name of hav­ing fun.
How­ever, because sin leads to death, it kills every­thing it touches, par­tic­u­larly joy. There­fore, while a sin may appear to be fun ini­tially, the dis­tance it brings from God, the guilt it causes, and the dam­age it does to one­self and oth­ers are ulti­mately any­thing but fun. Sin poses as an attrac­tion before becom­ing an afflic­tion because it is decep­tive and ulti­mately a lie.

If no one is hurt then sin, it does not really mat­ter.
This is untrue on many accounts. Because our sin is against God, it grieves him and dis­tances us from him. Addi­tion­ally, sin hurts our church, fam­ily, friends, and those we are in com­mu­nity with, even if they are unaware of our sin, because our sin affects and changes us neg­a­tively. Lastly, our sin also hurts our­selves because we were not made for sin and to live in sin unre­pen­tantly is to dam­age oneself.

Sin is not a prob­lem unless you are caught, and so the sin­ner per­sists in secret sin.
But sin is never secret because God knows all, the sin­ner knows, and those who know the sin­ner often know some­thing is wrong even if they are unaware of the par­tic­u­lar sin being committed.

If a sin is pop­u­lar then it is okay, because every­one is doing it.
Some­times a cul­ture labels a vice as a virtue. How­ever, the Bible speaks often about the world in a neg­a­tive sense; the Bible is say­ing that the pop­u­lar major­ity and their cul­tures are prone toward sin and there­fore are not to replace God and his Word as the stan­dard for holi­ness and unholiness.

Sin­ful Responses to Sin

Min­i­mize a sin
This is often as sim­ple as com­par­ing oneʼs sin to seem­ingly greater and more heinous sins so as to get off the hook of rebuke.

Legit­imize a sin
There is the delu­sional belief that my sin is dif­fer­ent than any­one elseʼs because I have good rea­sons that legit­imize my sin. Some­times this goes so far as to say that because God in his grace used sin for some­thing good, it was a good thing that the sin occurred. This is a hor­ren­dous evil because it uses Godʼs grace that works in spite of our sin to por­tray our sin as a virtue and not a vice.

Ratio­nal­iz­ing oneʼs sin
It is  accept­able for me because of some exten­u­at­ing cir­cum­stances. Peo­ple who ratio­nal­ize their sin com­monly wear down their lis­ten­ers by speak­ing a great deal about their per­spec­tive on their motives and the con­di­tions sur­round­ing their sin in an effort to com­pel oth­ers to sym­pa­thize with them and thereby excuse them. Ed Welch says, “sin is mad­ness or insan­ity. It is irra­tional, delu­sional, unrea­son­able. It makes absolutely no sense in light of Godʼs love toward us.

This is when some­one else is blamed for my sin. This was the tac­tic of our first par­ents in the gar­den, where Eve blamed Satan for her sin, and Adam blamed Eve and God for mak­ing her.

We try to avoid our sin by, for exam­ple, say­ing we were just jok­ing, some­one mis­un­der­stood us, or the per­son who con­fronted us in our sin was not as lov­ing as we would have liked and hurt our feel­ings. Diver­sion­ary tac­tics are sub­tle and decep­tive means by which sin­ners change the topic from their sin in an effort to not be con­fronted by their sin or required to repent.

Par­tial Con­fes­sion
Only telling a part of our sin. In pride, rather than sim­ply, clearly, truth­fully, and thor­oughly telling all that we have done, it is com­mon to only con­fess a por­tion of what we have done.

“Worldly grief”
Paul says when we merely regret the con­se­quences of our sin, we are feel­ing wordly grief. We do not repent of our sin and put it to death because we only regret its effects, not the sin itself.

Find­ing a rea­son to explain our sin so that it is not seen as sin­ful but under­stand­able. The truth is that, often, there are mit­i­gat­ing fac­tors that con­tribute to our sin, but to use them as excuses for our sin denies our moral responsibility.

I appear help­lessly piti­ful and unable to have done oth­er­wise by nam­ing some­one (e.g., par­ent, Satan, past abuser) or some­thing (e.g., genes, cul­ture, per­son­al­ity) as respon­si­ble for my sin. The aim of vic­tim­iza­tion is to get sym­pa­thy and empa­thy rather than a rebuke and is an offense to true vic­tims who have suf­fered actual sin.

Mere con­fes­sion
I name a sin, but do not repent of it and put it to death by Godʼs grace. Mere con­fes­sion is incred­i­bly tricky because peo­ple who prac­tice it acknowl­edge their sin, show remorse, and ask for for­give­ness. But they do not change and only repeat their sin, thereby reveal­ing that they were not truly repen­tant and will­ing to put their sin to death because Jesus died for it.


  1. Why?
  2. Feed­ing the Flesh
  3. Atone­ment
  4. Am I judg­men­tal? by beth
  5. 02.11 — CrossTrainingKARM

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