In the words of Martin Luther, a Christian is “at the same time just and still a sinner.” Which means that before God we are without sin, but we still are actively sinning everyday.
All of the letters of Paul in the NT call believers to live out their faith by actively intentionally working at not giving into sinful passions. Our passions are disordered by the fall, and are so messed up that people will do some very vile things. If you look at Leviticus chapter 18 you’ll see a striking list of sexual perversions that God had to spell out in black and white as wrong because people were doing those things normally. Friends, when you see things prohibited in the Bible it is the enduring testimony of God’s word and they are there because it is a constant problem. Even the New Testament has to address the same things because people have not changed!
Some sins seem to go in and out of style with our culture, but in style or out, they are still a sin. Sin begins with desire or passions, and the desire is where we have our constant wrestlings with sin.
We do not all wrestle with the same things, but we all wrestle with something. Friends, we need to remember that and not be nasty to our brothers and sisters who are struggling with their sinful passions! (Read Galatians 5:26-6:2 ) Brothers and Sisters, the fact that you are tempted to do all kinds of sins does not mean that you are not a Christian. There is literally no end to the sin that you’ll want to do. Again, read the Bible and you’ll see that God’s people wrestle with sin.
Now, if you do get all tangled up in sin — if you give into your passions, it can and usually will make your life harder. The regret, shame, and self flagellation you’ll feel does not mean that God has cast you away, it means that God is letting you feel bad so you’ll be loath to do it again. But God doesn’t cast you away. (Read 2 Samuel 11-12 for an example.)
Pastor Terry Basham, II
Faith Baptist Church
This article originally appeared on Cheboygan Daily Tribune: Pastor's Corner: Christians and sin