Jesus’ act of dying on the cross is not for the prevention of sins, but for the prevention of guilt and apathy.
I mean, Jesus himself makes avoiding sin impossible when he demands that we be perfect as our heavenly Father is perfect. But God will NOT be denied.
Andrew Greely writes that…
“If you cannot accept the idea that love is at the core of the universe, that is your privilege.”
“If you do not believe that the Absolute (God) passionately wants to be our friend and our lover, then by all means reject such a seemingly absurd notion.”
“If you do not believe that we have the enthusiasm and the strength and the courage and the creativity to love one another as friends, then quickly cast aside such an incredible idea into the trash can.”
“And if you think it is ridiculous to believe that life will triumph over death, then don’t bother with Christianity, because you can’t be a Christian unless you believe that.”
God wants to love us, God wants us to love each other, and God wants this to happen forever.
There is no denying that sin prevents this from happening. Our sins prevent God from achieving this goal.
Many people have classified sin in many ways, many different times.
I think the most important distinction between sins is that of omission and commission. Sins that you have either committed or omitted.
Sins of commission are sins in which we have done something wrong. Lying, stealing, cheating, gossiping, name-calling, murdering, lusting, and on and on and on and you get the point…
Sins of omission are sins in which we have chosen to not do a good thing. We have not cared for the widow, orphan, and immigrant. We have not acted justly, loved mercy, or been humble. We have not fed the hungry and thirsty, clothed the naked, or visited the prisoner. We have not shown forgiveness in the way that we have been forgiven. We have not done the good act prepared for us in advance.
Personally, I have seen a connection between the two in this way – when I become preoccupied with my repetition of sins of commission, my eyes grow dull to see the “good works prepared for me” and I begin to engage in sins of omission.
Yes, Jesus’ death on the cross covers over “a multitude of sins” (no doubt both commission and omission are included). But like I said earlier, the prevention is for guilt and apathy that while we find ourselves sinners, we not be discouraged from engaging in good works.
Sometimes we view the cross as only a means to salvation. The perversion we are guilty of is not viewing the cross in its fullest measure and responding accordingly.