20th April 2015

Sin is not the Problem,
Sin is the Problem

“But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanes us from all sin.”
1 John 1:7 (NKJV) 

Christianity can sometimes be puzzling. How can both our headline statements be true? The scripture above gives us part of the answer. Jesus Christ, fully God and fully man has paid the penalty for all humanity’s sins, past, present and future. That’s why He came and why He died on the cross for us. It is the staggering truth of the gospel of grace. It is at the heart of the statement in 1 John 4.10, “In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.”

So sin is not the problem because the penalty of sin, death, has been paid on our behalf, even though for many people that seems too incredible a truth to believe. That’s why the first part of our headline is true.

But what about the second part? How is that also true. The answer is simple, that while our sins are forgiven by Christ’s sacrifice we still have to live with the consequences of sin in our lives today. Romans 3:15-17 says, “Their feet are swift to shed blood; Destruction and misery are in all their ways; And the way of peace they have not known.” Imagine you are a Christian or a Muslim living in the parts of Iraq and Syria that are under the control of ISIS. Wouldn’t this scripture ring true for you? Those people are suffering the consequences of the sin of other people. For them Sin is the problem. The same applies in our daily lives. When parents break up because one or the other will not remain faithful, both they and any children they have suffer the consequences of sin.

The Bible has much to say about honesty in our dealings with others. When the directors of a business don’t conduct themselves with honesty and integrity, the staff and people who have to use the service provided or buy the products manufactured suffer the consequences of that sin. People suffer the consequences of sin in their individual relationships, as victims of crime, as citizens of a country which is wrongly governed, in all the circumstances which we read about in our daily papers.

So in this life and at this time sin is still the problem. What’s the solution? First to follow Christ as individuals seeking not to sin, though we still will from time to time; and second to pray from the heart for the return of Jesus Christ and the joy when Acts 3:19-21 becomes a reality.

Gracious and Merciful Father, forgive us our sins. Heal us spiritually, emotionally and when needed, physically, that our actions do not cause others to suffer. Give us the strength to bear the consequences of sin, while earnestly praying for the return of Jesus Christ.

Study by Keith Hartrick


About the Author:
Keith Hartrick is an Elder in Grace Communion Church – Leeds, and serves on the Church Council there.

Local Congregation:
Grace Communion – Leeds
Garden Village Welfare Association Community Centre
Pendas Way
LS15 8LE

Meeting Time:
Saturday 2PM

Local Congregational Contact:
Malcolm Arnold
Phone:  01484-312347
Email: malcolm.john.arnold@ntlworld.com

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