Willful Sin

In Hebrews 10:26-31, it reads; “26 For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, 27 but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries. 28 Anyone who has set aside the law of Moses dies without mercy on the evidence of two or three witnesses. 29 How much worse punishment, do you think, will be deserved by the one who has trampled underfoot the Son of God, and has profaned the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has outraged the Spirit of grace? 30 For we know him who said, “Vengeance is mine; I will repay.” And again, “The Lord will judge his people.” 31 It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.”

Can you image a born-again Christian turning back into their sin after receiving Christ Jesus?  R.C. Sproul wrote, “The willful sin is abandoning one’s confession altogether, trampling on the Son underfoot, treating His sacrificed blood as unclean, and insulting God’s gracious gift. The seriousness is measured by its willfulness and the measurement of knowledge and enlightenment it refuses. The passage is not teaching that true Christians can lose their salvation, but is a warning for Believers to persevere and for those who profess faith without possessing it to trust in Christ alone.”[1]

Persistence in sin is a guaranteed road for disaster. To think that after receiving such a gift of salvation, that we can turn back into sin! But this happens more frequently that we think.

I once knew a man and woman who were not married, but were living together as a husband and wife would live together. They later came to Christ and were convicted of their sin of fornication. They decided that they should get married and the man moved out of the home until they would get married. This is the right thing to do according to God’s way. This couple although they were in sin, are living holy lives and ultimately got married.

Then, there are couples who receive the Good News of Jesus Christ, accept Him as their Savior, but continue to live in sin by sleeping together and fornicating. This is a willful sin and they have trampled on God’s gracious gift. God will forgive them if they repent and turn from their sin.

JC Ryle wrote, “The extent to which we may harden ourselves by resisting light and knowledge is one of the most fearful facts of our nature. We may become past feeling, like those whose limbs are mortified before they die. We may lose entirely all sense of fear, or shame, or remorse and have a heart as hard as the nether millstone, blind to every warning and deaf to every appeal. It is a sore disease, but one which unhappily is not uncommon among professing Christians. None seem so liable to it as those who, having great light and privilege, deliberately turn their backs on Christ and return to the world. Nothing seems likely to touch such people, but the voice of the archangel and the trump of God.”[2]

Deliberately turn their backs on Christ and return to the world. That is exactly what willful sin is. When we do not love our neighbor, we turn our backs on Christ. When we willfully sin against our neighbor with hatred, we turn our backs on Jesus. We hammer those nails into His hands and feet one more time as we continue to sin and not follow His ways.

My concern when writing this piece is the racism that prevails across our nation. Brother is turning against brother and sister is turning against sister. We live in a world made up of many races and nationalities. Jesus gave us a commandment to LOVE OUR NEIGHBOR AS OURSELVES, yet we continue to hate, and drive those nails deeper into our Lord and Savior. If you have truly accepted Jesus, then live your life in a manner that is pleasing to Him. Forgive those who have wronged you. Move forward in love for one another.

Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life, no one comes to the Father accept through me.” (John 14:6) JC Ryle paraphrased Psalm 119:17 by saying, “The strongest Christian is the one who feels his weakness most and cries most frequently, ‘Hold me up, and I shall be safe.”[3]

Please consider following in the ways of Jesus Christ and living your life in a manner pleasing to Him. One way to ensure that you stay on the right path is to pray to Him and read the Bible. The Bible is God’s message to you. It is like a handbook on how to live your life, in a manner pleasing to the Lord.

If you have strayed back into the world, please consider turning back to Christ. Ask forgiveness, and follow Jesus all the days of your life. He will forgive you if you ask Him.

I pray that you will stay steady in Christ.

Photo Credit: Pexels

[1] RC Sproul, ed., The Reformation Study Bible (Orlando, FL: Reformation Trust, 2015) 2214.

[2] JC Ryle, Compiled by Robert Sheehan, Daily Readings of the Four Gospels (Grand Rapids, MI: EP Books, 2015) Evening July 11.

[3] Ryle, Daily Readings, July 11, Evening.

Copyright © July 12, 2020. Marketplace Evangelism Today, a publication of Marketplace Evangelism Ministries, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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