Free to sin?


I’ve been posting answers to questions I get through email. Here’s another one…

Q: In your article “15 Things Jesus Didn’t Say” you state that ““By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you have correct theology.” Of course, he did not say this. But are you saying that false theology is ok? In the same article you write ““Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you a checklist of things to do and not do in order to remain in God’s favor.” Does this mean that we are free to sin and God does not care about that?

A: Jesus had no theological or doctrinal litmus test for his followers. The chief characteristic he identified that authenticated whether someone was truly embracing his message was love. The disciples were all over the map theologically, and for sure had “false theology.” We all have “false theology.” Our best and highest notions about God are just approximate indicators of the truth.

On the second point, this is what I would say:
1. We are in fact free to sin. Right? If you want to sin, you are free to do so. No one is stopping you.
2. The checklist I was referring to are those things religion tells us we must do in order to be close to God, or be worthy of God’s love and acceptance. This stems from the false notion of a performance-based relationship with God.
3. You’re going to have think a little more critically about things than your question implies. I won’t even answer the part of whether or not God (or us) should care about something like inflicting physical, emotional, psychological pain or abuse on others. Any eight-year-old child knows the answer to that because it is self-evident.

Latest Comments

  1. David Utley says:

    On the first point, we are saved by grace not by our theology. I would suggest that no one would enjoy all of eternity if salvation were based on perfect theology. Our understanding
    of who God is grows as our relationship grows. By His Grace

  2. yasmin says:

    “One thing we all need to understand, and it is that this life is all about you and God. When we get to His Presence, no one is going to be around, we will be accountable to Him here and in heaven. It is very difficult to find a real spiritual balance in an imperfect world with imperfect people. There is NOTHING WE CAN DO to make people change, we can only pray, trust, and hope for the best to happen in people’s life, as we DON’T KNOW the whole story in that person’s life, we have to be very very careful..! King David remained silent even having the right words to say. As Pastor for 30 yrs, I can only assure that God knows better, and it is true that grace is NOT a license to sin, BUT it is also true that His mercy, and love endures forever, EVEN IN DARKNESS THERE IS ALWAYS LIGHT.”YZR

  3. CharlyAlphaMike says:

    Though it is true that we are saved entirely by God’s grace and our actions are irrelevant to salvation, we are not given leave to do as we please once we have entered into relationship with Christ. “Grace frees us from the enslaving sin that made us unable to be righteous, but it doesn’t free us from our call to be righteous.”(C.S. Lewis) We may still have the choice of doing as we please, but there is a greater calling to live in accordance to the law out of a love in our hearts for Jesus.

  4. Trey says:

    I enjoy these replies a great deal, gives me perspective. My education eventually forced me to write (The Christian)God or (The Hebrew)God because we cannot escape that fact. And am I the only person who wants to better myself in order to better my species as a whole?

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