Ranking sins

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by rbell, Jan 8, 2007.

  1. rbell

    rbell
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    This should be interesting...

    It is apparent that many feel that there are some sins worse than others. It would seem to be a given that blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is in a class by itself, as it is specifically talked about that sin "will not be forgiven." (although a lot of specifics on that sin would also make an interesting discussion)

    It would seem by some of the threads I've seen today, the "worst" sins in the eyes of many here are:

    1. Murder (tie)
    2. Suicide (tie)
    3. Homosexuality

    Are there more you put in your "top ten?" Why are these sins worse in God's eyes than others? And if you believe that, how do you justify it?

    Full disclosure: I have a problem with "ranking" sins...because I don't think God does it. But apparently some don't feel the same. I'd like to hear more.
     
  2. JamieinNH

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    rbell,

    I agree with you in that, other than blasphemy, all sins are equal in God's eyes. In man's eyes however, many people do seem to make a "top ten" list.

    I believe they do that because of their own sinful ways. For the ones that "rank" sins, they do it, in my opinion, because they know they won't commmit these "top ten" sins.

    It's easy for people to say murders and homosexuals are worse then others because they are not going to kill anyone, or have sex with a man. It's easy to justify and rank sins if you're not even close to commiting them.

    Just my opinion....

    Jamie
     
  3. JonC

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    I think that we rank sin based on how we feel, as a society, we are impacted by the action, or how we as individuals deem the conduct.

    As far as actually ranking sin in “God’s eyes”, I think He views sin as sin. Rebellion from God is rebellion regardless of the action. Regardless of the sin committed, it separates one from God. Except through Christ, all sin, no matter how minor we feel it to be, warrents death.
     
  4. JonC

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    Actually, I should have said that all sin warrants death, and it is only through Christ we receive God’s mercy and forgiveness. Sin in the believer’s live deserves the same wrath as sin in the unbelievers life, it is only through Grace we recieve salvation.
     
  5. bapmom

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    I think we also rank sins because we see there are different earthly consequences for different sins. Some results are permanent, they cannot be "undone"....like murder. Other sins we can rectify.......if you steal, you can pay it back. In the laws God gave in Leviticus He gives more severe punishments for some sins than for others. This would seem to indicate that God has a sort of ranking system when it comes to punishments. After all, not every consequence was death.

    However, the ultimate consequence for any sin is spiritual death. We all deserve Hell whether we think our sins are minor or not.
     
  6. rbell

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    Great input so far...

    ...still waiting to hear from those who rank sins.

    And in my opinion, when one says, "It is impossible for a Christian to commit _________________ (not including the Blasphemy of Holy Spirit in this blank) and be a Christian."

    I'm also not referring to a lifestyle of continuous rebellion with no fruits of one's walk with God evident. I'm talking about a sin act.

    Anyone gonna "rank" them?
     
  7. Rufus_1611

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    I don't have a ranking laid out, but scripture is pretty clear that God does.

    "Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven." - Matthew 5:19

    "Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation." - Matthew 23:14

    "Jesus answered, Thou couldest have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from above: therefore he that delivered me unto thee hath the greater sin." - John 19:11
     
  8. ccrobinson

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    Before the suicide thread was closed at 30 pages, this ranking of sins is exactly where my next post was going. The only sin that is in its own class is blasphemy. All others are of equal rank.
     
  9. JonC

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    I suppose the nation’s laws also either reflect or are influenced by the “ranking of sin” by the population. For example, while adultery is defiantly considered a sin (my assumption), it is not considered as serious an offence as in the 1800’s.

    I think that the punishments prescribed by God in the Old Testament were to preserve the nation of Israel. Justice in a society needs to be based on a common set of principles, and offenses are considered based on the impact to that society.

    While certainly theft and murder are both sins, people are not punished by men for those sins. They are punished for those crimes.
     
  10. PastorSBC1303

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    I agree, and this is the point that should be stressed to people.
     
  11. rbell

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    Why would God rank sins and not give us the ranking?

    Out of the three scriptures you mentioned, only the third gives me pause in this area of ranking sins. In the first, Jesus was referring to a "jot and tittle" idea...he appealed to the importance of all scripture. In the second...that refers to greater punishment not a greater sin.

    But I still come back to the absolute holiness of God. All sin is an affront to Him. I can't agree that God "ranks" sins.
     
  12. donnA

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    I think we rank sin becasue then we can see our sin isn't as bad as someone elses, their sin ranks higher then ours. Makes us feel superior.
     
  13. rbell

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    We could have a thousand threads started on this one statement.

    You just might have hit at the crux of many who rail against their pet sins...sometimes going beyond what the Word says, other times not showing love to the sinner in spite of their sinful state, still other times becoming preoccupied with the one sin and ignoring the rest of God's counsel...

    Someone give that nail an asprin. He just got his head hit.
     
  14. Helen

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    The one sin that cannot be forgiven is blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, as already mentioned. Since the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Truth, as Jesus told us, and since God's wrath is being poured out on those who suppress the truth, as Paul tells us in Romans 1, then it might be safe to say that the worst sin in God's eyes is the suppression of the truth in favor of the lie on a consistent and unrepentant basis.

    After that, there may be somewhat of a ranking. Witness Jesus' fury with the Pharisees in Matt. 23.

    Those who claim to be Christian and are not do incredible damage to His reputation among men. This, I think, is taking the name of God in vain.
    This often goes hand in hand with presenting false doctrine in the name of Christianity.

    Many other sins can be atoned for from person to person with an apology or monetary repayment, or something here and now. I am not speaking of Christ's atonement, I hope that is clear. But 'making up' for past damage is quite possible with many sins.

    But wrong doctrine damages and keeps on damaging, driving people away from the truth of Christ -- sometimes for a good part of their lives. There is no way to undo the wasted years. I think it is to those teachers, who have done this, that the words "Depart from Me, I never knew you" might be directed.
     
  15. JonC

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    If I could rank sin speeding would be low, very low, on the list. :saint:
     
  16. rbell

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    Now THAT'S a good point...many sins have a longer destructive life on more people than other sins do. Their path of destruction is wider. More folks are hurt. It takes more apologies, more restitution, etc.

    But is that a "worse sin?"

    In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus takes many of the "sins" that would seem worse (such as adultery) and equates them with sins that "hurt fewer people" (lust, or "adultery in the heart.") So then...those sins are on equal footing! Even though the external sin would seem to be more of an abomination, Jesus taught that the internal cousin to that external sin was just as bad.

    Now...why would the Savior go and do something like that? :tongue3:

    Keep 'em coming...
     
  17. rbell

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    My cousin's a trooper. What's your home address? He's low on his quota this month.:thumbs:
     
  18. Helen

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    Are you speeding or.....qualifying?
     
  19. Helen

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    What made me think of it that way was Matt. 23. It was the teachers who seemed to infuriate Jesus the most, not the average rotten sinner...
     
  20. JonC

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    What's the difference?

    (And I hope rbell's cousin isn't in Tennessee)
     

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