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Of Sin and Salvation
God is holy, righteous and pure. Sin cannot exist in his presence, because it is a rejection of all that God is.
God created us to be a reflection of his moral nature - that is why Scripture says he created us "in his image." He also made us fully capable of doing this. However, we, the human race, have chosen to reject God, and to go after ways that are a rejection of his moral nature.
Sin is "missing the mark." We could compare it to a target that we are shooting arrows at; and sin is like missing the bull's-eye. However, it's not that we try hard and accidently miss the bull's-eye; rather, we deliberately aim the wrong way. God created us, the human race, fully capable of hitting the mark 100% of the time, but we deliberately chose to not do so. By doing this, sin has become a part of our nature, influencing even our values and our perspective of right and wrong, so that we have lost the ability to hit the mark.
We tend to ignore the fact that sin against other people is also a sin against God.
We cannot stand in God's presence, as long as we are determined to cling to sin. We have to reject our lifestyles and values, and cling to the lifestyle and values that Jesus taught. This is what it means, when Scripture tells us to "repent" and to "follow Jesus."
False teachers may say, "Jesus loves you just the way you are"; for what they say often contains fragments of truth. But until we repent of our ways - until we reject our own lifestyle and values, and go after the lifestyle and values taught to us by Jesus - we are rejecting God's love, and cannot become recipients of it.
If we do turn to God, it will be like aiming once again toward the target. Because of sin's past effects on us, we won't always hit the bull's-eye; but we will be aiming for it. Sinless perfection will not occur until we are in Jesus' presence. But as we grow in Christ, we will get closer and closer to the 100%. And it will be the reflection of our heart's desire to follow Jesus, not just a pretension we live-out on Sunday mornings.
Dennis Hinks © 2007