By Michael Youssef, Ph.D.
The spirit of the age that Paul warns us about also comes dressed in the form of moral tolerance. Today, this spirit declares that Jesus is ambiguous about sin, and so must we be. This movement proclaims that Christ does not care how people behave morally. It declares that Christ is apathetic toward our decisions and lifestyles—but God loves us too much to let us live a life of sin. He wants us to follow His ways, the only path to fullness of life.
Read Romans 6:23. Paul tells us that sin has a price, and that price is death. Any sin we commit ushers decay into our lives. Sexual immorality kills intimacy. Lying damages integrity. Gossip destroys relationships. Every sin brings something corrupt and evil into our lives.
The spirit of the age wants to keep people from experiencing life to the full (John 10:10), but more than that, it wants to keep them from the God who is Life. Sin doesn’t only cause death in our lives—it costs death. Paul tells us in Romans 6:23 that because of our sin, we were all destined to pay sin’s cost with our very lives, living forever apart from the God who loves us. But God made a better way for us. He sent His Son Jesus to pay the cost for our sin and to set us free from death. He offers this freedom to everyone who will come to Him.
The spirit of the age declares that Christ is soft on sin, ambiguous about sin—but sin is costly. Sin is deadly. God hates sin because He is holy, He is just, and He loves us. God knows that sin destroys us, and this is why He sent Jesus to set us free from it.
This is the God we preach—the God of power and might who breaks the chains of sin. His power can set the captives free. His power can liberate anyone from the tyranny of sin, shame, and addiction. He is the only One who can heal and restore.
When you encounter someone who believes that sin isn’t serious, pray for them to see the Truth about sin. Ask God to use you to communicate the only solution: Christ’s forgiveness. And despite how the conversation goes, continue to pray for that person, because sometimes seeing Truth is a process. But God is tenacious. He wants everyone to come home to Him.
Prayer: Lord, forgive me for the times I have treated sin lightly. Use me to free others from the chains of sin, that they may know Your love, freedom, and forgiveness. Amen.
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23).