Are there degrees of death?
I know it sounds like a silly question… are there degrees of death? Can a person be a little dead? I’m no doctor, but I’m pretty sure dead is dead.
I have often heard and even said the phrase, “The ground at the foot of the cross is level.” What does that mean? It means that sin is sin. Any sin, every sin, all sin required the blood sacrifice of the cross.
“In fact, the law requires that nearly everything be cleansed with blood and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness” Hebrews 9:22
So every time you and I go to the cross, seeking forgiveness for our sin may we not be guilty of self-righteousness like the Pharisee in Luke 18, Also He spoke this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others:
“Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, ‘God, I thank You that I am not like other men – extortioners, unjust, adulterers, (addicts, drunks, gamblers, unwed mothers, angry, inappropriately dressed) or even as this tax collector. I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I possess (I pay my bills on time, I save money, I am educated, I dress well, I don’t drink or use drugs).'” (Parenthesis added for emphasis).
This Pharisee thought he was only partially dead but the others were fully dead. See the Scripture says, “The wages of sin is death….” Romans 6:23 “But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death” James 1:14-15. Sin brings forth death. That means what we would consider even the slightest sin results in death. The greatest sin results in death. All sin results in death. So before we minimize our own sin, we need to consider the cross was required for all of it. You and I were saved through the work of Jesus Christ on the cross. The person standing next to you is saved through the work of the cross. That brother or sister in Christ has been saved by the cross. The ground at the foot of the cross is level.
Written by Diane Hunt: Diane Hunt serves on the board of America’s Keswick and is the Executive Director & CEO of Changed Choices, a Christian non-profit in North Carolina. She is also a biblical counselor and women’s event speaker. For more information about having Diane speak at your next event please contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Think About This: “To become a Christian is to become alive to beauty.”- Dane C. Ortlund