“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”.
When Paul wrote those words in the letter to the Romans (3:23) he stated a simple universal truth – everyone has sinned and failed to live up to the Law of God. Everyone has committed some sin, some more than others, but no one is exempt from committing at least one sin against the teachings of God. It only takes one sin to fall under God’s judgement; remember the story of Adam and Eve and the one sin that got them expelled from the Garden of Eden. No one mortal can achieve perfection, the perfection that comes from living a sinless life. Only one person in all of history has ever achieved that, namely Jesus of Nazareth, and He ended up getting nailed to a cross.
But don’t we stop sinning when we come to faith in the Christ? Doesn’t our faith help us to eliminate sin in our lives? No, it doesn’t. Even after we come to faith we will still sin against God. In the letter to the Phillipians (3:12) Paul clearly states that he has not yet achieved perfection, meaning a sinless state. That means that he still had to struggle against his sinful nature everyday; he still committed sins. And this was one of the apostles!
So what can we do? Repent and confess our sins to the Lord that we may be forgiven through our faith in Christ Jesus. Repentance is such a huge part of the Christian life, and I look askance at anyone or any church that does not teach or practice repentance. Repentance is simply remorse for our wrongs and a desire to stop doing them. Paul still had things in his life that he had to practice repentance for. I still have sins in my life that I have to practice repentance for and struggle to stop doing. Everyone does, no one is exempt. I talked about repentance in an earlier blog regarding sin, entitled “Resisting Evil”. Repentance is essential, but unless a person recognizes that they still have things to repent of they are running a grave risk of not using their faith to follow Jesus fully.
So if anyone, Christian or non-believer, claims that they are living a sinless life and have nothing to repent and seek forgiveness for, remember Romans 3:23 and remind them of it. For their belief that they are living a sinless life is wrong and sooner or later they will pay a price for that delusion. As for us, continually practice repentance, seek our Lord’s forgiveness, and continue to resist sin, for otherwise we are letting God and ourselves down.
Remember, all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.
May peace and blessings be with you.