Thursday, March 23, 2017

Are All Sins Equal In Severity?

  • Introduction:
          -Some Christians advocate the notion that all sins are equally severe in nature. But if you go by the Bible alone for spiritual discernment, and not by the mere opinions of fallible and uninspired men, then you will readily come to the conclusion that the "sin is sin" theory is unequivocally repudiated by scriptural instruction (2 Timothy 3:15-17). In short, there are no statements, either implicitly or explicitly, in Scripture that provide justification for the belief that all sins are equally severe.
  • Sins Are Not Equally Severe:
          -While it is true that all sins deserve condemnation (Romans 6:23), some sins do have a much greater negative impact on the soul than others (John 19:11; 1 John 5:15-17). Some sins can cause more spiritual detriment than others. 
          -While it is true that all other types of blasphemy are forgivable, God will never forgive blasphemy committed against the Holy Spirit (Matthew 12:31-32; Mark 3:28-29).
          -Just as sins have differing degrees of severity (Ezekiel 8), some Commandments are greater in importance than others, with the most important being love of God and love of neighbor (Matthew 22:36-39). Scripture tells us that certain sins are "more tolerable" than others (Luke 10:7-12). Scripture mentions "greater condemnation" (Matthew 23:14; Luke 12:47-48). There are different levels of severity in punishment for those in hell.
  • What About James 2:10-11? Does It Teach That All Sins Are Equal In Severity?:
          -The text of James 2:10-11 says absolutely nothing about all sins being equally severe in nature. The inspired writer James was not placing murder in the same category of severity as adultery (or visa versa). In fact, the context of James 2:10-11 is not about differing degrees of sin, but rather, a Christian demonstrating the reality of his or her salvation through good deeds. All this passage is saying is that if you commit sins such as adultery and murder, then you have violated God's moral Law. In other words, the text is simply stating that there are multiple ways to break the Commandments of God. There is more than one way to break His Moral Law, just as there are multiple ways of violating the traffic law.


  1. The main thing is that every single sin is the same in that only one sin of any kind violates God's holiness and condemns us to hell.

    However, the severity of the sin is what determines earthly punishment. God considered murder to be the most heinous crime, apparently, because that was the first sin for which he established capital punishment for the whole world (all descendants of Noah), while all other crimes punished by capital punishment were in the Law of Moses and execution was only in the theocracy of Israel. Gentiles did were not told to use capital punishment for anything other than murder.

    The fact that more crimes with Israel were rated as capital crimes, such as homosexual behavior, adultery, bestiality, etc, demonstrates that God does indeed see some sins as more heinous than others for earthly consequences.

    1. Thank you for taking the time to add some clarification to my article.