Summary: Many of us have heard (and accepted) that all sins are equal. But is that statement Biblically correct?

What Are Sins and What does the Bible say about sin?

Genesis 4: 7. “If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it.”

Deuteronomy 9:7 “Remember this and never forget how you aroused the anger of the Lord your God in the wilderness. From the day you left Egypt until you arrived here, you have been rebellious against the Lord.”

The Bible describes sin as lawlessness (1 John 3:4). Even before humankind was created, Sin had its beginning with Lucifer, the most powerful and beautiful angel. Not content with this, he desired to be equal to or higher than God. Satan delivered the opportunity to sin in the Garden of Eden, tempting Eve and Adam with, “you shall be like God.” Ever since, this original sin has been passed through all the generations of humankind. Just as we inherit a fair portion of our characteristics and habits from our parents, we inherit our sinful natures from Adam.

King David bewailed and self-confessed his sinful, inherited nature in Psalm 51:5: “Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me.”

Romans 5:12-17 tells us of this death through Adam but also the chance of life through Christ. “Death Through Adam, Life Through Christ. Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned—. To be sure, sin was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not charged against anyone’s account where there is no law. Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who is a pattern of the one to come. But the gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many! Nor can the gift of God be compared with the result of one man’s sin: The judgment followed one sin and brought condemnation, but the gift followed many trespasses and brought justification. For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ!

This understanding is reinforced by the words of Romans 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.'

The Ten Commandments, those that Moses carried down from the mountain provided the “written rules” of God. Now humankind could be legitimately judged against these Commandments. Humans were now subject to death because none of us are capable of not violating the laws of God.

However, thank God, God used the principle of imputation to offer us a path to salvation. Used in legalistic terms, imputed means “to take something from a person and credit it, or charge it to someone else's account.” God imputed the sin of believers to the account of Jesus. The Christ, who paid the full penalty for that sin—death on the cross.

Imputing our sin to Jesus, God treated Christ as if He were a sinner, though He was not. Jesus sacrificed Himself for the sins of the entire world (1 John 2:2). It is crucial to realize Jesus did not inherit sin from Adam. He suffered sin's penalty, but never was His pure and perfect nature stained by sin.

Besides inherited sin, a second type is personal sin. Those sins committed every day by every human being. Because we have inherited a sin nature from Adam, we commit individual, personal sins, everything from seemingly harmless thoughts to the desire to murder.

Another category is sins of omission. These sin would involve not doing what is right or failing to do as instructed. Refusing to share Christ with others, neglecting to pray, or avoiding people in need are examples of sins of omission.

Those individuals who have not placed their faith in Jesus Christ will suffer the full penalty for personal sin, inherited sin, or sins of omission. However, believers have not only been freed from the eternal penalty of sin, but we also have the power to resist sinning. We can choose whether or not to commit personal sins because we have the power to resist sin through pray and the help of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is a comforter but convicts us when we commit sin (Romans 8:9-11). Once we confess our personal or sins of omission to God or Jesus, and ask forgiveness for them, we are restored to perfect fellowship with Him. “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).

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