“R” stands for REBELLION.
Soon after God created Adam and Eve (the first man and woman), they willfully chose to rebel against God, and sin entered the human race. Every person thereafter has inherited that sinful nature and has continued to rebel against our Creator. The result of sin is that we have failed to reflect God’s glory. In order to dwell in His Holy presence, God does not require that we merely do our best to live good lives; He requires us to reflect His perfection.
- God said, “You shall be holy, for I the Lord your God am holy” (Leviticus 19:2).
God will never judge us based upon how we compare to our fellow human beings, but on how we compare to God Himself.
Clearly, all of us fall far short of His perfect standard.
- “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
We are all sinner both by nature (because we inherited our sinful natures from Adam and Eve) and by choice (because we all willfully choose to disobey God).
- The Bible says, “Through one man (Adam) sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned” (Romans 5:12).
- “If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us” (1 John 1:8).
Because God is perfect in HOLINESS, He cannot tolerate the presence of sin. Our sins have separated us from our Creator.
- “Your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden His face from you” (Isaiah 59:2).
Because sin separates us from God, it carries tragic consequences.
- “For the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23).
One day, we will all stand before God to give an account of our deeds.
- “It is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment” (Hebrews 9:27).
Maybe you’ve never thought of yourself as a sinner before. God has graciously given us the 10 Commandments to prove to us that we are indeed sinners. Consider these questions:
- Have you ever told a lie?
- The 9th commandment tells us not to lie (Exodus 20:16).
- What do you call a person who tells a lie? A “liar,” right?
- Have you ever stolen anything? Even the smallest of things?
- The 8th commandment tells us not to steal (Exodus 20:15).
- What do you call a person who steals? A “thief,” right?
- Have you ever committed adultery? Remember that Jesus says in Matthew 5:27 that if we even look at another person with lust, that is adultery in the heart.
- The 7th commandment tells us not to commit adultery (Exodus 20:14).
- What do you call a person who commits adultery? An “adulterer,” right?
- Have you ever used God’s name in vain? In other words, have you used God’s name as a cuss word or in way that belittles it, such as “Oh my ____”?
- The 3rd commandment tells us not to use God’s name in this way (Exodus 20:7).
- To break this commandment is to blaspheme, which makes the person breaking this commandment a “blasphemer.”
Now, if you answered yes to every one of these questions—just as I did when I answered them for myself—you have self-admitted that you are a liar, a thief, an adulterer, and a blasphemer. I’ve not judged you that way. You have judged yourself as such. Here’s the key question: does this make you guilty or innocent in the eyes of God? Obviously, you stand as guilty before God just as I do. If God is a just and righteous judge on the Day of Judgment, based upon our works, will He allow us into His presence in Heaven, or will He punish us away from His presence in Hell? God is certainly a just and righteous judge. He demands righteous to allow us into Heaven, but we have just demonstrated through the 10 Commandments that we are far from righteous. Therefore, the right answer is that, based upon our works, He will punish us away from His presence in Hell.
How can we sinners ever become righteous in God’s sight?