Sin is our willful decision to rebel against the precepts that God has laid before us. We know that continuing thought, that action that we have committed, or the desires that we will not abate from our thoughts of our own accord are not what He would have us to do, for it will separate us from Him until it is repented of. “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise.” (Psalm 51:17)
The heart that turns from sin has only one place to turn to, Almighty God is the only One we are to be concerned with after our fall. Others will be affected, if not immediately or on a permanent level, but your thoughts, your actions and words will defer towards them, and they will realize that something has happened. It is why we are commanded to share and be willing to share our burdens with our brothers and sisters in Christ, beyond the additional assistance, there is the knowledge that you are not alone. It is only shame, embarrassment, the loss of our stature in the eyes of others that keeps us from doing this, we tend to keep our eyes on the visible.
There are sins that you and I have committed since we were saved that only God knows about, sins that in a way do not affect those we know and love in an adverse way, unless they are told of them, they will never know of them, but “Be sure that your sin will find you out.” (Numb. 32:23) One of God’s ways of convicting us of our sins is for them to be found out, it is why we hide from the truth of them, we fear what others will think of us if they know about our transgression, but what we fear the most sometimes can be the only thing that releases us from that fear. I am not speaking so much about a personal sin against another that the individual has no knowledge of, if a wife commits adultery, whether in the flesh or in her heart against her husband, and he never finds out about it, how is he harmed? “And David said unto Nathan, I have sinned against the LORD. And Nathan said unto David, The LORD also hath put away thy sin; thou shalt not die.” (2 Sam. 12:13) I do not know if Nathan came to him in private or in full view of the entire kingdom, I do know that he was spared the punishment of the law. “And the man that committeth adultery with another man’s wife, even he that committeth adultery with his neighbour’s wife, the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death.” (Lev. 20:10) How does one kill the king for such a deed. There were those who knew what had happened, and as it has always been and continues even today, those with wealth and positions of power are rarely held as accountable as those who do not have such things. David’s sin affected not only himself though, but the entire kingdom, an entire nation.
This one small sin that you have committed, the one no one but you knows about, it can affect, and infect, much more than you could possibly ever imagine. “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” (1 John 1:8) “And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?” (Job 1:8) “And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil? and still he holdeth fast his integrity, although thou movedst me against him, to destroy him without cause.” (Job 2:3)
When we confess our sins to our Lord, we regain our integrity with Him, in sin can no man stand before God, a broken and contrite heart alone can stand before a Holy God with integrity. Against God alone are all of our sins committed, others may be affected by them, generations of families have been destroyed because of the actions of one single man, sin infects, decimates and then ultimately destroys. When we attempt to continue to live with unrepented sin in our lives, it does not just hinder our relationship with Christ, it stops it dead in its tracks, no further movement upon the path will ensue, it is here that we can best learn the infinite patience of God, for He will make no move in your life until you repent, and He will wait a very long time. He will of course allow you time to repent, but many there are who truly are His children who have lived a long and fruitless life because of unrepentance.
When we sin, we must admit that sin, ask for forgiveness, receive it in grace, forgive ourselves, and get on with the business of serving our Lord. Sin is a cage, it keeps you locked in and the blessings and benefits of God locked out, you alone hold the key, the jailor is waiting for nothing more than a confession from the heart, and the moment He sees it, the door will be flung wide open. Many still sit in that cage because they will not forgive themselves, the door is open but they will not pass through it, this also, in a sense, is an offence toward God, though I will not say if it is sin or not. By not forgiving ourselves we put ourselves in the place of God, we say that His forgiveness is not sufficient for the sin we have committed, and this is a grave error.
The sinner is forgiven for the sins he has committed, the memory will not pass, those we have harmed may or may not forgive us, but “If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.” (John 8:36) We are commanded to be holy, (1 Peter 1:16) but the road we are on is full of pitfalls and sharp stones, there are fleshly desires, desires of the eyes and pride are all around us, we will fall, we all do. Only the one who confesses their sins, repents, and denies them when they appear again can walk fully in integrity upon the path that Almighty God has set before us.
My friends, failures are there for a reason, they show us the wrong way to do something, sin is an opportunity for repentance, it is an opportunity to show us that we are but dust, and repenting of those sins in the life of a believer gives him the strength and courage to continue on the path, for he is shown that he is greatly loved, and it brings to mind just how much, “that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8) should mean to us.
“Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.” (Deut. 31:6)