Sin is bad.
I learned that early on. With a Southern Baptist/Primitive Baptist background, I was privileged to get this fundamental point even before I hit my teens.
Today, I still agree, often with deep regret, that sin is bad. However, more than that, instead of seeing through a microscope, each little sin and counting it bad, I see through a telescope that shows me it’s worse than I thought, it’s all bad.
Anybody out there with me? I sin. That’s bad. Even more, I’m through and through, in every realm a sinner. That’s a real bummer. Like finding out that Darth Vader was Luke’s father. There was a “line” of bad, really bad, breathing loudly & scarily, that defined Luke more than all his valiant efforts. Bummer.
Sometimes, as I have seen my sin nature more and more, I have struggled. Sin is bad. I not only sin, but I am a sinner. Therefore, I am bad. Yeah, sin is bad, but there is something worse. Living there.
The worst is never knowing, believing, understanding the unconditional, non-condemning, Romans 8 love, power, forgiveness, purpose of a Father who knows our sin better than we do (I Jn. 3:20, “in whatever our heart condemns us…God is greater than our heart, and knows all things”).
A pastor recently shared a great example. What if years ago you inherited millions of dollars and put it in the bank. Since then, you have been struggling financially to make ends meet, to pay your bills, try to help your children, struggling constantly trying to figure out ways to make it all work, never drawing on the millions you had in the bank? This is how we live when we do not recognize, believe, live in and bless God for everything amazing He has given us in Christ Jesus.
Are you trying to make ends meet spiritually? Just go ahead and stamp bankrupt on yourself!! Then, by the power of God’s great Spirit, continually withdraw from His account the freedom, hope, value, encouragement (etc) we have in Christ. “If God is for us, who is against us?” (Rom. 8:31).