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Tuesday, March 8, 2011

That's A Good Question - Sin

Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "The lies we tell ourselves...":

Maybe I sound silly asking this but, I sin and I can admit that, i'm not proud of it though and my question is how many times will God really forgive us for our sins? Will he keep forgiving us if we repeat the same sin over and over, time after time.

Posted by Anonymous to Praise In Action at March 8, 2011 4:37 AM

Dear Anonymous-

This question is in no way silly. It is something we all struggle with, so you shouldn't feel alone.

I believe the place to start in this answer is with understanding what you are saying.

Admitting that we sin is not the same as repenting from sin. The difference, for me lies in being able to say it to yourself, and perhaps to others, and really trying to leave the sin behind. Admitting is the first step, but not the end of the process.

Repent is one of those "churchy" words, but it means to turn away from, to turn your back on, to go in another direction.

The second thing we must look at is why we commit the same, or similar sins over and over.

Are we addicted to it? Possibly.

Do we enjoy it? If we are honest the answer is "Yes, we enjoy it!" We may not enjoy what comes after- hangover, feelings of poor self-esteem, hating ourselves, letting ourselves / others / God down, etc.

Third, yes, God will forgive us an infinite number of times, if we truly repent. I do not think He forgives us for "falling" into our favorite sin over and over, using His grace and forgiveness as a backup plan. If God is the "get out of Hell free" card, then this is not being repentant. It is what is in our hearts that matter. This is not some mental exercise. It certainly is not a game to see how many time we think we can outsmart God or His plan.

Ultimately, we have to decide which is more important. The pleasure we get from the sin, or our eternal souls.

Illustration: I don't know what your sin is, but the best example I can give here is smoking. I am an ex-smoker, but have to lay claim to being a nicotine addict. I chose to stop smoking for the benefit of my children's health, and for my own. I have not smoked in over 20 years. But this does not mean that I do not have the opportunity to smoke. I am an adult, and I can chose to buy a pack of cigarettes any time I please. But, my choice is to turn away from this thought or desire whenever it raises its ugly head.

It is not a sin, but a choice that I must make over and over again.

No, I don't think smoking is a sin, but I think our pull toward sin works just like this.

It is always tugging at our hearts and minds and souls.

But with God's help, we can choose to turn away, again and again.

At some point we have to choose to not fall in the same hole over and over.

At some point we have to learn to not put ourselves in harm's way.

At some point we have to get help, from our family, friends, church members, our Pastor, God....

Grace and Peace...


Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

You must believe that God operates by His word. Assurance of God's action toward us is demonstrated by Jesus work snd continued by the Holy Spirit's active work in your life in real time. It is a matter of spiritual logic God forgives therefore I can be forgiven. God moves sytematically and by order this is part of revelation. Ultimate knowing of God in His person will only come in passing through to eternity. Be Blessed and encouraged!