One of the things that disturbs me is when I see folks who say they are Christians doing things that are not Christ-like but then dismissing their behavior by repeatedly saying, “My God is a God of forgiveness. He is faithful to forgive all of my sins!” What really disturbs me is how they treat the Savior. They are looking at Him like He’s the ultimate “get out of jail free” card. There is no thought about how the sins they are committing hurt the One they say they love. There is no consideration of how they are trampling over the commands of the One they believe to have saved them. Instead, they are looking at themselves, what they want, and how they can have more “fun.” There is no thought about Jesus at all. In my mind they’ve committed a breach of faith. This isn’t something that God takes lightly.
So Saul died for his breach of faith. He broke faith with the LORD in that he did not keep the command of the LORD, and also consulted a medium, seeking guidance. He did not seek guidance from the LORD. Therefore the LORD put him to death and turned the kingdom over to David the son of Jesse. – 1 Chronicles 10:13-14, ESV
I understand that we all sin. We’re all flawed and far from perfect. But when we realize our sin, that should cause us to go, “Wait a minute. What have I done? I need to get right with God. This isn’t something I should be doing any longer!” With the realization of our sin should come remorse. We’ve hurt the One we love. We’ve dishonored and disobeyed Him. That isn’t something to brush off. It’s serious. When we’re hurt or when we’re dishonored, we would hope that the person who has done so would come back apologetic and sad for their actions. And our response towards God should be the same.
If we don’t think and feel this way, if our sin is just something else to toss onto the pile for God to forgive as we move on with life, I think there’s a real problem here. This is especially true if we compound that sin with more sin. Then we’re dropping into the same pattern as Saul. Saul’s breach of faith led to his early death. It led to God stripping the kingdom from him, along with his life. It also meant that God stripped the kingdom not only from Saul, but also from his descendants. The kingdom was placed in the hand of David and the kingdom will always remain in the line of David, finding its ultimate and final ruler in the Lord Jesus Christ. Saul’s breach of faith cost him everything and it cost his family everything, too. Disobeying God repeatedly isn’t something to be taken lightly. It isn’t something to be shrugged off. It’s a serious issue.
This is one of the reason it is so important to have brothers and sisters to hold each other accountable. We could begin a slide into sin that we don’t see coming. However, our brothers and sisters, if we are open and transparent with them, will see it. They will be able to warn us and, if we heed them, will keep us from sliding into more and more sin. They can help us stave off a breach of faith, thereby stopping the pain we are inflicting on our Lord. I know I keep coming back to this idea of hurting God, but truly, that’s what the Bible describes sin as doing. When we chose to disobey, we are causing Him pain. He hates sin. He died for our sins because He loves us. He knows the destruction that sin wreaks. That’s why He counsels again and again in His Word to avoid it, to distance ourselves from those who dwell in it, and to hate it as much as He does. Because He loves us, when He sees us mired in sin, that cuts Him. As a parent, when I see my child hurt, I hurt. The same is true of God with respect to us. We don’t typically speak of the effects of sin in this way, but maybe we should. Maybe we should acknowledge how much our sin hurts God, hurts the One we love. Perhaps that would give us a greater desire to avoid sin, to cast it off, to pursue the paths of righteousness. I know the thoughts of my sins being the hammer that hits the nail through His hand or being the flick of the scourge that shredded His back cause me to shudder. They cause me to hurt, and well they should.
Is there sin you’re holding on that you don’t see as a big deal? Perhaps it’s a grudge or a lack of forgiveness towards a brother. Or it might be a “pleasure” that you know isn’t holy but you still pursue it. Perhaps it’s an adulterous relationship that you are in which hasn’t come to light to those closest to you. It might be that you know God is calling you to something but so far you’ve turned a deaf ear towards Him. Whatever it is, why are you holding on to it? Is it really worth the pain you’re causing the Savior? And is it worth the breach of fellowship with Christ that you’re surely experiencing? Let the sin go and embrace all that God has for you in Himself.