You know theologically that you are “free” from sin and death. You know that, the day you got saved, Jesus washed your sins away. Yet you still struggle. You want to believe you will get free from it, but if you’re honest with yourself, you think you will struggle with sin until the day you die.
But is this the freedom Christ bought for us? Is this what He meant when He said He freed us from sin?
I would say no.
So how do you know if you still are in bondage to sin or if you are walking in the freedom Christ gives us?
These 5 questions will help answer that for you.
While the Golden Gate Bridge was being built over San Francisco Bay, construction fell badly behind schedule because a worker had accidentally fallen from the scaffolding to his death.
All the other workers became conscious that a single error could cause them to plummet to their deaths at any moment. So the City decided that, though it would cost them enormously, they would install a massive net under the bridge.
Surprisingly, no one worked faster. Everyone was still scared to fall. Then the day came when a man lost balance on a beam and fell, landing safely in the net.
After that, progress on the bridge was hardly ever interrupted. Workers ignored the danger and focused on the construction. During the rest of the building project, the net saved 19 different men.
Those men called themselves the “Halfway to Hell Club,” claiming they were going to a watery hell, but the net saved them.
1. How conscious are you of sin?
Sin requires death and punishment. God didn’t want people to die, so He allowed the sacrifice of animals to pay for people’s sins. No animal was enough to cover sin entirely, though, so people would have to sacrifice another animal each year to re-cleanse themselves.
Israelites longed for a way to be cleansed once and for all. This is why the author of Hebrews says:
“If they could have provided perfect cleansing, the sacrifices would have stopped, for the worshipers would have been purified once for all time, and their feelings of guilt would have disappeared.”
Another version says, “They would no longer have any consciousness of sins.”
To “lose consciousness” means to “no longer be aware” of something. You get knocked out. You have no idea of what is going on around you.
The author then says in Hebrews 1:9:
“… we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.”
Jesus came and cleansed us once and for all! This means we are now supposed to be “unconscious” of sin!
Do you walk around all day worried about “falling off the bridge” into sin? Or do you realize that God paid a pricey cost to spread a net of grace under you?
Every Christian is a part of the “Halfway to Hell Club.” We were on our way down until the net of grace caught us.
You can now live life unaware of sin. You don’t have to walk around all day thinking about sin. Sin never even has to cross your mind.
You can be confident that you won’t sin anymore, and if you somehow do, the grace of Jesus will catch you.
2. How often do you pray about sin?
When I was younger, I spent every night before bed searching my day looking for sin, worried that if I forgot to repent of some sin, I wouldn’t go to heaven.
But this is not freedom from sin. I was still obsessed with it! My entire relationship with God was based on a conversation about sin!
What marriage would work if the couple only spoke when one spouse needed to apologize? That would be horrible!
Yet, how often do we only pray when we know we sinned? Sin should be a minor portion of our prayer life! (Learn how to pray here)
Jesus did not die so that we could remain aware of sin and repent again every night. He died so that we would be completely free of it.
Like the workers scared on the bridge, we Christians often become paralyzed while building the Kingdom of God because we are so worried about messing up.
But this is the beauty of grace. We can confidently build forward, knowing that if/when we fall, we will be OK!
Stop focusing on falling and start focusing on building the Kingdom. Live as though you can’t fall, because you know that His grace is enough to catch you if you do.
Enjoying this Post? Let’s Get Connected!
3. How often do you ask about sin?
As a pastor, probably the number one question I get is, “Is____a sin?”
“Are tattoos a sin?” “Is alcohol a sin?” “Is weed a sin?” “How far can I go with my girlfriend before it’s a sin?” And the list goes on and on.
This sounds like we are still VERY conscious of sin.
We think that if we don’t sin, then we are “good Christians.” But when did sin become the marker of what makes a good Christian?
We have devolved our relationship with Christ if we think, “If it’s not a sin, I’m good. If it is a sin, I’m bad.”
The question we must ask ourselves is not, “Is ____ a sin?” but rather, “Is ____ Christ?”
Christ is the new standard!
“No one who abides in Him sins; no one who sins has seen Him or knows Him. . . . No one who is born of God practices sin, because His seed abides in him; and he cannot sin, because he is born of God” (1 John 3:6, 9).
Notice how the answer to not sinning is abiding in Christ. When Christ is the new goal, marker, and standard, I stop sinning. When I focus on Him, I focus less on sin. When I practice being like Christ, I no longer practice sin.
If we become fully conscious of Christ in our lives, sin would never even come into the conversation because He already conquered sin.
4. How often do you call yourself “a sinner?”
You can tell how free someone is from sin by how they speak about themselves.
When someone identifies themselves as a “sinner,” it shows they still believe sin to be part of their identity.
But this is not a Biblical identity. Romans 6:6-7 tells us:
“We know that our old sinful selves were crucified with Christ so that sin might lose its power in our lives. We are no longer slaves to sin. For when we died with Christ, we were set free from the power of sin.”
Your identity is now that you are free.
You were a sinner, but now you are a saint.
You were a child of darkness, but now you are a child of God!
If you believe you are a sinner, then you will act like a sinner.
But if you believe you are holy, then you will act holy.
Our actions reveal who we believe we are.
5. Who do you really think your Savior is? Death or Jesus?
Do you believe that the only time you will ever be free from sin will be when you die and go to heaven?
If we believe this, it means death is our Savior from sin and not Christ.
If Jesus saved me from sin, I have to believe there is victory from sin on this side of eternity.
I don’t walk around all day wondering if I am in sin.
Can you still choose to sin? Yes. The Golden Gate bridge workers could have purposely jumped out of the net into the water, if they desired. I can purposely jump into sin. But the moment I turn to Christ, the net is there to catch me.
Do we live life like a builder scared to fall off the bridge? Or do we live confident in the love and grace of Jesus?
If sin is at the forefront of your mind, then grace is not.
We should spend more time worshipping God by living in the freedom He gave us than living aware of sin.