Christianity today, by in large, has missed the boat on the topic of sin. As a culture we have determined that everyone has not only the ability, but the right to define truth and their own morality. Consequentially Christians are no longer defining the problem of sin and damnation as that form which we need saving, but simply offer Jesus and salvation as a bonus and eternal security. Gone are the days of preaching Hell, fire and brimstone, and now are the days of the prosperity Gospel. We believe that we are fundamentally good beings and adding Jesus into our lives will secure success and happiness.
Such a worldview and belief system leaves us exceptionally lonely, however. Because when we come to Jesus for salvation, the Holy Spirit takes up residence within our lives, and the role of the Holy Spirit is to convict us of sin and righteousness and live through us so that we die to our sin and become more like Jesus, more holy, throughout our daily lives.
“And [the Spirit], when He comes, will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment…”
– John 16.8
So we all have a sin problem, and the Holy Spirit is revealing that problem to us daily, but yet we are left in a situation where we are unable to confess that problem and find accountability and comaraderie in working through it. Dietrich Bonhoeffer said most profoundly:
“It may be that Christians, notwithstanding corporate worship, common prayer, and all their fellowship in service, may still be left to their loneliness. The final break-through to fellowship does not occur, because, though they have fellowship with one another as believers and as devout people, they do not have fellowship as the undevout, as sinners. The pious fellowship permits no one to be a sinner. So everybody must conceal his sin from himself and from the fellowship. We dare not be sinners. Many Christians are unthinkably horrified when a real sinner is suddenly discovered among the righteous. So we remain alone with our sin, living in lies and hypocrisy. The fact is that we are sinners.”
We are all sinners. “For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God” (Rom 3.23).