Christian Sin

Christians Who Sin

I've had this question and no one has really fully answered me: sinning. Christ died for our sins, so that if we accept him as Lord we'll have eternal life, right? Where does that leave Christians who sin? If Christians believe in Jesus and accept him does that mean that Christians are free to sin or free from sin? Or do we have to be as Holy as possible and stop sinning period?

Many people make it seem as if we accept Christ we are automatically going to heaven. But there are also gay people who accept Jesus as Lord, does that mean the homosexual sin is overlooked because they've accepted Christ? No sin is bigger than the other so where does that leave Christians who still knowingly sin?

I've always seen it as, if you accept Christ, then you accept and follow His Word. Stop sinning and if you slip, repent. What do you think Christ really meant about Christians and sinning?

May God Bless you!

Natasha Rodriguez
Lafayette, LA response:

Thank you for your question. God, who is holy and wants only what is good for us, commanded Christians to be holy in all of our conduct:

"As obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy." (1 Peter 1:14-16)

But God knows that we are not perfect and that we will not completely stop sinning during our time in this sinful, fallen world:

"For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." (Romans 3:23)

"If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us." (1 John 1:8-10)

True Christians anguish over their sin:

"Has then what is good become death to me? Certainly not! But sin, that it might appear sin, was producing death in me through what is good, so that sin through the commandment might become exceedingly sinful. For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am carnal, sold under sin. For what I am doing, I do not understand. For what I will to do, that I do not practice; but what I hate, that I do." (Romans 7:13-15)

They cry out to the Lord to deliver them from their sins:

"For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man. But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members. O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? I thank God - through Jesus Christ our Lord!..." (Romans 7:22-25)

True Christians recognize and admit sin as sin, anguish over it, confess it to the Lord - not to a human being (see Is Roman Catholicism Christian?) - and cry out to Him for deliverance. They will be delivered from some sins immediately, while the frequency of and the desire for other sins drop dramatically over time. Eventually, there will be a drastic difference in conduct that evidence "new creation":

"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new." (2 Corinthians 5:17)

To be sure, a person's drastically different conduct does not save that person. Rather, it serves as evidence that the person has been saved, much like a shadow cast by your body on a sunny day does not give rise to your body, but it indicates that your body is real.

Jesus died on the cross not because Christians will never sin again but to pay in full the penalty for all past, present and future sins committed by Christians, and it is by the grace of that sacrificial payment that we have eternal life.

Self-declared "Christians" who take this grace as a license to sin prove by their attitude and actions that Jesus is not their Lord, for by definition "Lord" is someone who is obeyed unconditionally (see Lord, Liar or Lunatic?).

Homosexuals who become true Christians will: (1) recognize and admit homosexuality as sin (2) anguish over their homosexuality; (3) confess it to God; (4) cry out to Him for deliverance; and (5) receive it as above. Should they relapse momentarily, they will be torn up about it and fall before the Lord again in tears of confession, true repentance and supplication for His forgiveness and deliverance.

Homosexual "Christians" who do not admit homosexuality to be sin (see Bible verses against homosexuality) and/or continue in it unchanged will be in for a rude awakening when they stand before their "Lord":

"Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’" (Matthew 7:21-23)

A good starting point for someone dealing with homosexuality is to recognize that neither they nor anyone else deserves sexual gratification, food, water or even the next breath of air. The only thing sinners, homosexual or otherwise, "deserve" is the fire of hell, from which we have been saved by God, who sacrificed His own life.

What more do we "deserve" from Him who already gave us His life? See Justice of God.