Leviticus 5:17 “If a person sins and does what is forbidden in any of the LORD’s commands, even though he does not know it, he is guilty and will be held responsible.”
Here in the 4-6 chapters of Leviticus we read of the various offerings that were required by God for the atonement of sins committed by the people. Of particular note is the guilt offering. This offering was for the atonement of sins committed against the holy things of God. The Bible says that the person committing a sin that is forbidden in any of the Lord’s commands is guilty of it whether the person knows they sinned or not. When the deed is done, the offender is guilty – period!
Today we live in the “age of grace” as it is commonly referred to because Jesus died for our sins and enables us to be saved by the grace of God through faith (Eph. 2:8-9). The problem since the resurrection of Jesus is that many people over the last 2,000 plus years have used the grace of God as a ‘license” to sin and cover up their sins by proclaiming that God’s grace will cover their sins and be forgiven. WELL, there are bits of truth in their statement.
God will forgive our sins when we confess them to Him. That is true. His apostles teach us to not use the grace of God as a license to sin-both Peter and Paul. In the context of the passage for today, God instructs Moses that people will sin unknowingly but will eventually learn of their sin. Additionally, God considered them guilty of their sin whether they knew it or not at the time of commission. Once they became aware of their wrongdoing, they were to bring a guilt offering before the Lord for the atonement of their sin.
WELL, we are still guilty of sin we commit whether we know it or not. For us, we have the Holy Spirit as a Helper, who convicts of sin, righteousness, and judgment. The Spirit will not let us get away with any sin in the sense of committing the wrong and not knowing it. He is the One who reminds us of our sins and urges, prods us to confess our sins before God to be cleansed of them. John wrote that God is faithful to cleanse us of all unrighteousness and forgive us of our sins IF we confess them to Him. This act of love, however, IS NOT to be abused. God’s Word is clear that abusing God’s grace is wrong and a sin in itself. This is why it is so dangerous for so-called “preachers” who teach that we can just live anyway we want to and be forgiven by God and still make it to heaven. WRONG!
I offer you the parable of the vine and branches Jesus taught (John 15:1-6). ““I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned.”
Now look at the highlighted passages. Jesus WAS NOT speaking of sinners being thrown into the fire but those that ARE IN THE VINE-JESUS! Unproductive, fruitless branches are cut down, allowed to die, and thrown into the FIRE. What fire? The fire of HELL! The idea of grace being a license to sin IS A LIE FROM SATAN! You CANNOT be “once saved always saved.” Jesus said so Himself right here in this passage from John. The people in the parable were a part of the family of God! They were believers! They produced no fruit and were burned up in the fire. That fire could be none other than the fire of HELL! Get in your head! Understand it! Let he who has ears to hear, hear what the Spirit is saying to the churches!
Father, I understand that I was guilty of every sin I committed prior to being saved whether I knew it or not. I realized upon conviction by Your Spirit that I needed forgiveness and redemption from the fires of hell because of my sins. You gave us Jesus as that atonement for our guilt offering and a one-time offering for all our sins. That is why you had John write that if we confess our sins to You, You are faithful to forgive us of them and to cleanse us of all unrighteousness. I pray that I never ever practice the wrongful theology of grace being a license to sin nor to believe that “once saved always saved.” Your Word states quite the contrary. I realize that I will sin from time to time because I am human; however, that does not mean I am to live in sin habitually and continually as I did in the past. You call for us to be holy as You are holy. To be set aside for Your purposes alone and nothing else. I confess that every attitude and thought has not been right lately. I ask you to forgive me of bad attitudes. Help me to grow by pruning this branch because you chasten those whom You love. I accept Your correction. As I grow after being pruned, help to produce fruit in my life: good deeds that fulfill Your goal for me, the fruit of the Spirit, and the intake of new souls into Your kingdom. In Jesus’ name, Amen.