How To Feel More Comfortable about Sin

The word “sin” seems so harsh. Members of the church and especially non-Christians don’t like the word. No one likes to have their actions called sins. Naturally, to commit an action and have it called sin will make us feel uncomfortable. If you want to continue sinning but not feel so bad about it, follow these tips:

Emphasize other people’s sins, minimize your own sins

Jesus illustrated this in the parable of the Pharisee and the tax collector in Luke 18:9-14.

9 He also told this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and treated others with contempt: 10 “Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee, standing by himself, prayed [1] thus: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I get.’ 13 But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even lift up his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me, a sinner!’ 14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified, rather than the other. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted.” ESV

by Rody Davis

A drawing of two paths by Rody Davis

The tax collector clearly had a negative view of his sin which is evidenced by his humility when approaching God. He considered himself a sinner and even said it out loud!  He would not even look up to God when asking God for mercy. He clearly was not comfortable with his sin.

However, the Pharisee knew that he needed to compare his life with those who were considered inferior and known in the world as sinners. He was even thankful to God that he was not like those terrible sins. He was also quick to point out all that he did for God and could even look God in the eye, so to speak, and declare his righteousness.

Matthew 7:1-5 records the most beloved saying of scripture (not “God so loved the world that He gave His only Son…” but the real favorite: “Judge not that you be not judged”). Jesus compared one who ignores his own sins while focusing on the sins of others as one who has a piece of lumber sticking out of his eye trying to remove a speck of dirt from his brother’s eye. Be careful not to read the whole passage because Jesus does not actually condemn judging others but rather that we need to work on ourselves in order that we may help others

Think on evil things without doing them

Some are rightly worried that if the do certain things, they will be lost:

“9 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, 10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. 11 And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. 1 Corinthians 6:9-11, ESV

However, these people who do not want to commit these acts (and others condemned in scripture) might let their minds wander and imagine sinful thoughts but think that they are safe since it is only in the mind. However, in Colossians 3:1-2 Paul urges us seek the things that are above and not dwell on worldly things. If we seek the things above, we will not want evil thoughts to remain in our minds to grow and pollute our thinking.

Jesus taught, in Matthew 15:11, 15-20, that evil inside our hearts defiles us. The sins that we commit come from things planted in our hearts. Note that all of these actions are prompted by lust, covetousness, hatred, envy, and ungodliness in our hearts.

Play near the “big” sins without committing them

Many people see committing sin as a line not to cross. When one steals or kills, they have crossed the line into unrighteousness. Jesus addressed this attitude with the Pharisees in Matthew 5:21-22; 27-28. Clearly murder and adultery were condemned by God and the Jewish audience recognized this as true. However, Jesus taught that before the “big” sins were committed, many little sins preceded them!  There are no “big” and “little” sins. All sin is unrighteousness.

We must also remember that sin is deceptive. After all, it is authored by the father of lies. When you think you are close to the edge of sin, you are actually already into sin. James 1:12-16 teaches about the progression of sin towards death. Most people do not jump into the deep end, they step into the shallow end and go until they are completely immersed.

Laugh at sinful things

I have no doubt that some will read this article and laugh at the idea of sin and that anyone should be concerned about it. They condemn very little and think that the concept of sin is outdated. This attitude itself is ancient and condemned by God

Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter! Isaiah 5:20, ESV

Mocking sin and the concept of sin and laughing at sinful actions or stories help make sin not seem so serious. This is the magic of TV and movies. Using filthly language, condemned in passages such as Colossians 3:8, doesn’t seem so bad when a cute kid does it. In fact, it usually generates a good laugh.

Sexual immorality is much easier to deal with when you can laugh at the behavior and laugh at those who condemn it. Adultery and premarital sex is always cause for a good laugh on TV and movies. One can find himself wanting the main character to have an affair or premarital sex with one of the other characters. Even if we would not endorse this if the characters were our friends or parents, we excuse it because it is “entertainment”. We can even watch couples having sex, something we don’t do in real life–and would be arrested if we were looking in bedroom windows. But hey, it’s part of the plot.

Sinful behaviors don’t seem so bad when they are flooded into the cable or satellite dish on a 24-hour basis. It is godly living and standing for the truth that really gets the good laughs.

Follow worldly philosophies

Let pithy sayings, suppositions about what the Bible teaches (without actually studying it thorougly yourself), and “accepted knowledge” guide your thoughts instead of clear reasoned arguments. Undersand that the problem with this approach is that Paul wrote, in 2 Corinthians 10:4-5, that the Bible can peel through the transparent knowledge and empty philosophy of the world. To feel more comfortable about sin,  deep and medidative Bible study should be avoided.

To follow the spirit of this world you must convince yourself that it doesn’t really matter what you believe. Of course, you will need to ignore passages like 1 Timothy 1:5-7.  If you find a preacher who will tickle your ear by teaching what you want to hear, that will help (2 Timothy 4:2-5).

Give into worldly habits since you can’t fight them

The best way to become comfortable with sinning is to convince yourself that you just can’t keep from sinning. Keep telling yourself that you are just too weak and that God will just have to deal with your lack of self control. You will need to ignore the exampe of Paul who disciplined his body and mind so he would be faithful to Christ, 1 Corinthians 9:27. Also, stay away from the exhortation to not let sin reign in your life, Romans 6:12-14. If you can avoid the instructions of 2 Peter 1 to develop self-control and the numerous exhortations to flee immorality and live “soberly, righteously, and godly in this present age” (1 Corinthians 6:18; Titus 2:12) it will help you to accept your lame excuse that you just can’t resist temptation and that it is just the way you are.

Don’t clutter your mind with spiritual things

If you are not thinking spiritually, you won’t have to be concerned whether an action is wrong or right. You can chant the mantra “peace and safety” while feeling comfortable with sin, 1 Thessalonians 5:3. Spiritual thoughts can cloud the mind and perhaps cause your conscience to hurt if you are committing sin.

A different approach

Some reading this might decide that they shouldn’t feel comfortable about sin in their lives. It is understandable since the Bible teaches that we will be judged for all that we do or think (Revelation 20:12-13; Hebrews 4:12-13) and that the punishment for sin is eternal death.

You might also see that sin brings you down from the beauty of holiness to the filth of the world (2 Peter 1:3-4). The more we sin the less we look like Christ. It cheapens our life for we can never be all that we should be, and do great things for the cause of Christ if sin rules in our lives.

If you realize this, then it would be best if you never became comfortable with sin in your life. Peace, joy, and contentment are only found in Christ. The devil can promise it through pleasures, possessions, and prestige, but he can never deliver.

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Categories: Christian Living

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