Monday, December 5, 2016

Are all sins equal?

Michael J. Kruger has been posting a series about "Taking Back Christianese." Today he addresses “All Sins Are Equal in God’s Sight,” a phrase which, he notes "does not come from Scripture." After explaining what those who use the phrase probably mean by it, he writes:
...[T]o say all sins are the same is to confuse the effect of sin with the heinousness of sin. While all sins are equal in their effect (they separate us from God), they are not all equally heinous.

Second, the Bible differentiates between sins. Some sins are more severe in terms of impact (1 Cor 6:18), in terms of culpability (Rom 1:21-32), and in terms of the judgment warranted (2 Pet 2:17; Matt 9:42; James 3:1).

...[T]he Westminster Larger Catechism 150 agrees:
Q. Are all transgressions of the law of God equally heinous in themselves, and in the sight of God?

A. All transgressions of the law of God are not equally heinous, but some sins in themselves, and by reason of several aggravations, are more heinous in the sight of God than others.
Third, although all people are sinners, the Bible makes it clear that some are more holy than others. The Bible has the category of the “righteous” person who is singled out by God as notably different (see my article on that subject here).

In the end, all sins are the same in their effect, but some sins are different in terms of their heinousness. .... [more]