Making an excuse for your sin will never excuse you from the judgement of God; it’s only self-deception.
This article is about people who blatantly continue in sin, act as if it’s insignificant, who disobey God, and then say, “we all fall short, we’re all growing” to block anyone who would rebuke them for behaving and continuing in ways that are clearly against the Word of God. I understand that we all mess up, but are we trying to live right (through the power of God), or are we being rebellious and using scriptures to justify our behavior?
“We all fall short”
The above saying is taken from Romans 3:23 (NIV): “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” This is true, but this is no excuse to continue in sin. Jesus died for our sins so that we wouldn’t have to take the penalty for them (John 3:16); and through confession and repentance, we can receive forgiveness and salvation. But more importantly, Jesus died so that we’d learn how to say NO to sin (Titus 2:11-12 NIV). Jesus also left us the Holy Spirit who gives us power to refrain from sin (Galatians 5:16-23).
His sacrifice is not so that we can continue in sin without penalty (see Danger Zone for more). God now calls us to be holy. Here’s what his word says:
13 Be alert and think straight. Put all your hope in how kind God will be to you when Jesus Christ appears. 14 Behave like obedient children. Don’t let your lives be controlled by your desires, as they used to be. 15 Always live as God’s holy people should, because God is the one who chose you, and he is holy. 16 That’s why the Scriptures say, “I am the holy God, and you must be holy too.” (1 Peter 1:13-16 CEV)
“We’re all growing”
This is true for some, but most people in the Institutional Church are not growing. Some even think that growth is automatic—it is not. We must actively participate in our own growth with God. If we don’t, we won’t grow.
When God says stop being arrogant and start being humble, but you continue to disobey, this is not growth. On the other hand, if you obey God, you’ve taken a step in your own spiritual growth. So, what you used to do, you don’t do anymore—this is growth. Growth comes as you submit to the Holy Spirit’s power to abstain from sin.
You’re not growing if you are still disrespectful, selfish, gossiping, lying, rude, proud, and fornicating – and you’ve been a Christian for 10 years. This is ridiculous! But this is what I see from Christians today, and it’s an indication of a lack of growth and a poor excuse for sinful behavior.
If you have a 13 year old child and 10 years later he’s the same size – is that growth? No. You would surely take that child to get an exam to figure out what’s wrong. If there’s a person who’s been calling himself a Christian for 10 years and still acts like the world – is that growth? Nope. This person should surely examine himself to see whether he is in the Faith as the Bible instructs in 2 Corinthians 13:5 (NIV).
Unfortunately, many are deceived (in these last and evil days) and think that sin is insignificant, their lifestyle, and characters don’t really need to change, and despite all that, they are still going to Heaven. What a shame. Then they say, “you can’t judge me” or, “Neal, you’re being judgmental.” Here’s my response to a fornicating Christian who said the same:
“As far as me judging you – I judge righteously, according to the scriptures. The Bible says that we are to judge our own people (1 Corinthians 5: 11-13 CEV). You claim to be a follower of Christ (like myself), but according to everything that you’ve clearly done, and are doing, you are not. You’re not fooling anyone but yourself. Jesus said you will know them by their fruit. Your fruit is fornication. And when confronted about it, you have justified and continued in it.”
“The judgment scripture in Matthew chapter 7:1-5 talks about judging another Christian in hypocrisy – I wasn’t fornicating then or now. Therefore my judgment is righteous. John 7:24 says ‘Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment’. Christians can discern both good and evil, which according to the Bible, is a legitimate judgment. I also don’t condemn you to Hell, God will make that call, but if you continue in sin, you are in danger, as the scriptures say, ‘the wages of sin is death’… But you can change.”
The false Christian (who was a Bible college student) never responded.
What to do when we sin
As followers of God, we have no excuse for sin. When we mess up, we need to confess our sins: which means to acknowledge what we did and agree that it is wrong, and then repent: which means to turn away from that sin and start following Christ again. Though we may fall, we must continue to get up and through the power of Jesus and His Spirit, we can be holy.