Are All Sins the Same?

Are all sins the same? God seems to thinks so. (Romans 3:10, 23) But how can this be? Say two men are given responsibility for the oversized buckets designed to carry water colonial_bucket3to their village. One fills his bucket with straw and appropriates it as a lounger for his hut. The other flies into a rage and uses his bucket to beat a fellow villager to death.

How can these possibly be seen as the same thing?

We judge actions, God judges hearts. The buckets did not belong to the men, they belonged to the village; neither used his bucket in the way it was made to be used, and as a result the village suffered. Based on actions, a crazed murderer is far worse than an opportunistic hedonist. But based on motives, both have failed to use their “buckets” (their lives) in the way they were created to be used.

About mitchteemley

Writer, Filmmaker, Humorist, Thinker-about-stuffer
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31 Responses to Are All Sins the Same?

  1. Most thoughtful version of “don’t waste your life” I’ve ever read, it was enough to make me question myself about my own “bucket”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Terri Nida says:

    Interesting perspective. It makes sense and I like it.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. That parable could be the catalyst for a whole discussion on sin and morality. From the perspective of the secular, the wisdom in the last six commandments could be defined as simply “unhealthy” behavior—either unhealthy for the individual or unhealthy for the human race. Your conclusion reminds me of the recent tragedy in Las Vegas and made me think of what defines a sociopath. Sometimes a sociopath starts out as merely “an opportunistic hedonist” but then winds up “a crazed murderer.” The sociopath has (perhaps a genetic) inability to empathize with other human beings and, even in the milder forms of sociopathy, views fellow humans as either stepping-stones or obstacles.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Good word picture, Mitch. Thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. BelleUnruh says:

    Interesting parable. I like how it shows we don’t live on an island. What we do affects others. But I would say the Bible as a whole does differentiate between sins. Jesus said those who have done worse sins will receive “severe punishment”, while those with smaller sins would receive “lesser punishment”. In the Old Testament, God says, “As you have done to others, so it will be done to you.”

    I take this to mean that in the judgement, the wicked will feel what they have done to others and then comes the “second death,” when they are dead forever, never to rise again.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. curryNcode says:

    all sins are the same to GOD, but its consequences can be different….

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Ron Whited says:

    Great post Mitch. Key takeaway for me is that sin is sin,and God doesn’t trivialize any of it. If He doesn’t rank one above the other, we must accept the truth that what we consider to be trivial,acceptable sin,He considers to be on par with the most agregious.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Excellent analogy, Mitch!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. alexankarr1 says:

    It applies to virtuous actions too. Not every apparent philanthropist has a pure heart.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. dtbrents says:

    1 Corinthians 6:18-20

    1 Corinthians 6:18-20English Standard Version (ESV)

    18 Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin[a] a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. 19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, 20 for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Timely post…thanks, Mitch.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Reblogged this on See, there's this thing called biology… and commented:
    I thought this was pretty awesome.Bucket wisdom 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Sandi says:

    Always a tough concept for me to grasp, but I can’t disagree.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I believe all sins are the same in that they are all failures to please God, and thus, they are all committed against God, and they all come from the evil human nature. However, I also think that not all sins are the same because they are not all equal failures to please God. For example, God is unwilling to forgive the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit because it is an eternal sin, whereas He is willing to forgive all other sins.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. I agree sins are sins. At the end god will judge us on how big our heart was and how many good deeds we did on earth. If you think about it. The more you do good on earth and live in peace the closer you are to loving a peaceful heaven life on earth. We make our heaven and hell on earth by our decisions.

    Like

    • I was under the impression that those who have accepted the blood of Christ are forgiven of all sins, large or small, major or minor. Isn’t that what the song “Amazing Grace” was all about? The composer was a slave ship captain.

      Liked by 3 people

      • dtbrents says:

        Vernon, I agree. The Bible teaches that God clothes us in Christ’s righteousness. God sees us as that not our sins. However, I will say that when a Christian sins we lose fellowship with God and can be chastised.

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  16. oneta hayes says:

    The most egregious sin is that of not accepting Christ as our Savior. That is the one that determines where we will spend eternity. I do believe that there are different degrees of punishment and/or reward for our works on earth. I do not think the man who steals food for his family will have the same punishment as the man who stokes the books so he can maintain his luxurious lifestyle. Neither do I think the person who feeds the hungry so it can go on “his resume” will get the same reward as the one who feeds the hungry because of a heart of compassion. So put me with those who say, No, they are not the same. That puts me in the minority, doesn’t it? The sin we had better stay far away from is that of ignoring Christ’s offer of forgiveness for all our sin!

    Liked by 1 person

    • mitchteemley says:

      Oneta, Jesus said the only unforgivable sin was blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, which most theologians (myself included) understand to be the rejection of His indwelling presence; in a nutshell: if we don’t have Him, we don’t have heaven. The degrees of punishment idea has led some to adopt the doctrine of Purgatory (notably the Catholic church); others understand it in other ways. I suspect the man stealing food in your e.g. isn’t sinning at all, since you imply a selfless motive. Likewise, the one who feeds the hungry in your e.g. is actually sinning (acting out of selfish motivation). You might say the size of our sins doesn’t matter as much as the size of our hearts (shades of Dr. Seuss ;>).

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      • oneta hayes says:

        Mitch, I agree completely. I do think a lot of our judgments are based on what “sin” really is. I also think the sin of blasphemy is that of rejecting Christ. I think sin is rebellion against God and disobedience to him. I think it is hard to not call sins the things as listed in Galatians 5:19 as well as some other scriptures which make plain what sins are.

        Liked by 1 person

      • dtbrents says:

        Sin is not an issue when it comes to salvation. Jesus paid the price for our sins on the cross. We do have to believe. 1 Corinthians 15

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  17. Truth! James 2:10-“Whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become accountable for all of it.” ESV

    Liked by 1 person

  18. It is true that there are levels of sin, just as there are levels of kedusha. However, I was rather shocked to realize that — more than once — we are told in scripture that God LOOKS at the heart but JUDGES and ‘recompenses’ the action. (Ex: Jer 17:10, Romans 2:6, John 3:19-20, etc. There are many more.) This is in agreement with the teaching of Matt 15:19 and Mark 7:21, which warn us that it is ‘out of the heart’ from which our evil DEEDS are born, so “we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ,” (2 Co 10:5), not permitting the evil intent of the heart to bear fruit. Praise God that ultimately it is our ACTIONS that will determine our punishment and/or reward, since fleshly thought is so difficult to banish!!

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Ok, killing some enemies and then lounging around on the murder weapon are both definitely off my bucket list.

    Liked by 2 people

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