There is a big difference between not doing what you want to do, and not doing it because you’re not supposed to. Children are told constantly not to do certain things, things that could harm them, that is the responsibility of those that know the truth of these matters, a hot stove, staying out of traffic, we as adults were taught these things, and have in some cases experienced the adverse effects of them, yet the child, when the ball rolls into the street has not, and it is our responsibility to ensure as best as we are able, that they understand.
“And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.” (Luke 16:31)
We, as born-again believers, have the experience of faith, we have been assured by the Holy Spirit that the Word of God is inerrant, that every word in it is true, that what it says happened, did indeed occur, and what is says will happen, will happen. As followers of Christ, we are to be Holy, (1 Peter 1:16) an impossible task, “For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.” (Romans 7:19) Yet we are to try, we are not to do the things we want to do when we know for a fact that they will be in rebellion to the will and Word of God, yet here then is the question, do we resist these temptations because of our love for the Lord, because we have been commanded not to submit to them, or because we will incur His wrath, or at least His sore displeasure and the loss of fellowship with Him until we repent.
I fear for most who call Christ Lord today it is a middle ground approach, if you will, that is taken instead, one that does not even see sin within themselves, unless it is blatant and openly expressed. The Roman Catholic cult has attempted to name these, what they call in essence major and minor sins, but they neglect this fact, sin is sin. There may be in the eyes of the Lord ones that will require more punishment from Him after the death of an individual, it was said by the Lord of Judas Iscariot, “Jesus answered, Thou couldest have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from above: therefore he that delivered me unto thee hath the greater sin,” (John 19:11) when speaking to Pilate about Judas. “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows’ houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.” (Matt. 23:14) But these have no place in the life of the one who has been crucified with Christ, all sin, great or small, if not repented of will receive chastisement from the Lord and He alone knows the punishment that will work best within us to draw us back to Himself.
The wise Father always knows what’s best for the errant child, and the punishment never exceeds the sin. We want to do that which we should not do, it is a part of our sinful nature, yet even as we are being transformed by the renewing of our mind, (Romans 12:2) we contemplate that which we know we do not want. “For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.” (Gal. 5:17)
Lust, envy, pride, all these and more are of the world, and so they are our enemy, yet for much, if not all of our lives, we enjoy at times going to the enemies camp to perhaps not live there, but just to visit for a short time. As followers of Christ, we must know within ourselves why we do not do the things that we want to do, and we must also understand, as Paul did, that at times we will do those things. There is a balance in our walk with Jesus that must be realized here, we will sin, we will fall into those traps, and we will do so at times willingly, but that does not mean that God hates us now, that if we don’t repent immediately that He will cause His wrath, or at least great displeasure upon us, He remembers that we are dust. (Psalm 103:14)
But that does not mean that you can treat these incidences as trivial, we cannot use this great gift of grace as a means or excuse to sin. (Romans 6:15) No father sends his child into the street so that he can learn how painful it is to be hit by a car. We must study the Word of God to know the will of God, and then we are to be obedient to His will because of our love for Him, because He loved us first, (1 John 4:19) and for no other reason.