Condemnable Sins


Sin is sin”, “All sin is equal (or the same) in God’s eyes

–Not in the Bible.


Some sins lead to death, and some don’t.  This makes them different types of sin.  All sin is not the same in God’s eyes.



Sin is sin?

I Jn 5:16-18

16         If anyone sees his brother commit a sin that does not lead to death, he should pray and God will give him life. I refer to those whose sin does not lead to death. There is a sin that leads to death. I am not saying that he should pray about that.

17         All wrongdoing is sin, and there is sin that does not lead to death. 18 We know that anyone born of God does not continue to sin; the one who was born of God keeps him safe, and the evil one cannot harm him.


Heb 9:14

14         How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God!  (NIV)


Heb 6:1-2

1          Therefore let us leave the elementary teachings about Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again the foundation of repentance from acts that lead to death, and of faith in God,

2          instruction about baptisms, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment.  (NIV)


Heb 6:1-2 states that the knowledge of these “acts that lead to death” are considered to be 1 of six foundations of the faith—merely elementary teachings.  Even a neophyte Christian should know these 6 things right? 


The foundation:

  1. repentance from acts that lead to death
  2. faith in God
  3. instruction about baptisms
  4. the laying on of hands
  5. the resurrection of the dead
  6. eternal judgment



The purpose of this document is to identify “deadly sin”, and explain the importance of that designation in the bible.  Secondarily, I want to disprove the idea that “all sin is the same in God’s eyes”.  Not only are some sins deadly and others are not, but God also considers the situation of the sinner when He views (or judges) sin.


I believe that God judges sin according to two vertices: 

a. Severity of the sin - this document explains this.

b. Intent of the sinner – the ignorant, accidental, or innocent sinner is judged differently than the hardened sinner, even if they happen to commit the same sin. 





A sin unto death

What are these sins that lead to death, which one born of God cannot continue in?


"I am a Christian and a  any of the lifestyles listed below _ ."

Either you or the Bible is wrong.  Something has got to give.  God does not have to.  He will not change, regardless of your beliefs.  Choose Him or you.


Who is wicked?

Matt 24:48‑51

48         But suppose that servant is wicked and says to himself, 'My master is staying away a long time,'

49         and he then begins to beat his fellow servants and to eat and drink with drunkards.

50         The master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he is not aware of.

51         He will cut him to pieces and assign him a place with the hypocrites, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.  (NIV)


1 Cor 6:9‑10

9          Do you not know that the wicked will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: Neither the sexually immoral nor idolaters nor adulterers nor male prostitutes nor homosexual offenders

10                 nor thieves nor the greedy nor drunkards nor slanderers nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. (NIV)


Col 3:5-6

5          Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry.

6          Because of these, the wrath of God is coming.  (NIV)


Who is greedy?

So we see that wickedness is not just about what bad things you do, but what you do not do.


            Matt 25:41-46

41         "Then he will say to those on his left, 'Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.

42         For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink,

43         I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.'

44         "They also will answer, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?'

45         "He will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.'

46         "Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life."  (NIV)


 For more than a definition of greed, read about how greed has infil Prosperity Gospel.


Who is an idolater?



Another non-behavioral sin that can damn your soul is not forgiving those who sin against you.  This is very difficult to understand, so this topic has its own document.




I added the Ezekiel scripture from the Torah because the Apostles did not invent this list of deadly sins.  They taught from the Torah.  Some sins (like involuntary manslaughter) in the Torah can be forgiven by blood sacrifice of animals. For more severe sins (abominations), like pre-meditated murder, the perpetrator must die for his own sin.  I’m guessing that is how the apostles generated these lists of damnable sins as warnings for their new Gentile brothers.  So far, my research indicates that is the generally the case.  My theory is that the apostle to the Gentiles was summarizing God’s moral law for them.  However, I have not yet found this Old Testament correlation to be the case for the following anomalies: hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness (Gal 5:21), or cowardice (Rev 21:8). 


Of all the sins that lead to death listed in this document, these anomalies appear to be the most minor sins on these vice lists.  That does not mean that these sins will not lead to spiritual death.  They will if you do not repent of them.  Yes, if you (as a Christian) continue in selfish ambition, you can lose your salvation.  But if you commit an abomination, like bestiality, you were not even a Christian, or at least you were not when you did such a thing. You need to get saved and stay saved by responding to the gospel.




The strongest warning to those who condone the above lifestyle choices as non-damnable appears above in Romans 1, after a long vice-list:


            Romans 1

32Although they know God's righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.


In approving of wickedness, they are rejecting the law, and consequently Christ’s fulfillment of it.  They are rejecting Christ by believing in lawlessness.  Romans 1:32 makes it clear that these who condone damnable sinners as anything but hellbound, themselves deserve death.


Isa 5:20

20                 Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter.  (NIV)


Most who believe in this wicked way do not just keep their opinions to themselves.  As Jesus says, “out of the overflow of the mouth the hearts speaks” (Matthew 12:34, Luke 6:45). They think that one can practice deadly sin and still be saved. Woe to them if they tell a new believer this:


Matthew 18:6
But if anyone causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a large millstone hung around his neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.
(Whole Chapter: Matthew 18 In context: Matthew 18:5-7)


As if bad advice was not damnable enough, many preachers are paid to bring this same message from the pulpit.


Malachi 2

7 "For the lips of a priest ought to preserve knowledge, and from his mouth men should seek instruction-because he is the messenger of the LORD Almighty. 8 But you have turned from the way and by your teaching have caused many to stumble; you have violated the covenant with Levi," says the LORD Almighty. 9 "So I have caused you to be despised and humiliated before all the people, because you have not followed my ways but have shown partiality in matters of the law.” (NIV)


Jude 1:4
For certain men whose condemnation was written about [ 4 Or men who were marked out for condemnation] long ago have secretly slipped in among you. They are godless men, who change the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign and Lord.
(Whole Chapter: Jude 1 In context: Jude 1:3-5



How we should live:

Now that we have defined wickedness—or sins that lead to death-- as they are different from more minor sins like unthankfulness and worry, lets look at the Lord’s warnings on this topic:


I Jn 1:5-7

5          This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.

6          If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live by the truth.

7                     But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.  (NIV)


1 Pet 4:17-18

17         For it is time for judgment to begin with the family of God; and if it begins with us, what will the outcome be for those who do not obey the gospel of God?

18         And, "If it is hard for the righteous to be saved, what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?"  (NIV)



How we should teach

Warn the wicked:

Heb 6:1-2

1          Therefore let us leave the elementary teachings about Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again the foundation of repentance from acts that lead to death, and of faith in God,

2          instruction about baptisms, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment.  (NIV)


Knowledge of these “acts that lead to death” are considered to be 1 of six foundations of the faith.  Perhaps we should know what they are?  Have you heard this “elementary teachings” preached about before you read this document?  Or, have you heard other contradicting elementary teachings, like “Don’t scare people off by teaching them to repent of such wicked sins, let the Holy Spirit tell them to”.  Truly, the Holy Spirit can be trusted to convict believers and even unbelievers of their sin (John 16:7-8).  However, warning against “acts that lead to death is a foundation of the faith itself. 


Gal 5:19-24

19         The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery;

20         idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions

21         and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.

22         But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,

23         gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

24         Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires.  (NIV)


1 Cor 3:10-11

10         By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as an expert builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should be careful how he builds.

11         For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ.  (NIV)


Is the foundation that you are preaching faulty?  Or, are you just not really preaching to anyone anyway?


Ezek 3:18-21

18         When I say to a wicked man, 'You will surely die,' and you do not warn him or speak out to dissuade him from his evil ways in order to save his life, that wicked man will die for his sin, and I will hold you accountable for his blood.

19         But if you do warn the wicked man and he does not turn from his wickedness or from his evil ways, he will die for his sin; but you will have saved yourself.

20         "Again, when a righteous man turns from his righteousness and does evil, and I put a stumbling block before him, he will die. Since you did not warn him, he will die for his sin. The righteous things he did will not be remembered, and I will hold you accountable for his blood.

21         But if you do warn the righteous man not to sin and he does not sin, he will surely live because he took warning, and you will have saved yourself."  (NIV)


What does Ezekiel’s warning mean to us today?  Will people’s blood still be on our hands in such a way that we could end up in the lake of fire if we refuse to warn the wicked?


Rev 21:7‑8

7          He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be his God and he will be my son.

8          But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars‑‑ their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death."  (NIV)


Now that you know what saving faith is not, you can follow at least follow half of this scriptural directive:


2 Cor 13:5

5          Examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you-- unless, of course, you fail the test?  (NIV)


Obeying the other half of this command would require you to know what saving faith IS.  To find out more about that, as it relates to this command, you can read about assurance.


warn the brothers:

1Thes 5:14

14         And we urge you, brothers, warn those who are idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone.  (NIV)


Again Paul reiterates the need to warn brothers even of a sin which is not mentioned above as one leading to death.


II Th 3:10-15

10         For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: "If a man will not work, he shall not eat."

11         We hear that some among you are idle. They are not busy; they are busybodies.

12         Such people we command and urge in the Lord Jesus Christ to settle down and earn the bread they eat.

13         And as for you, brothers, never tire of doing what is right.

14         If anyone does not obey our instruction in this letter, take special note of him. Do not associate with him, in order that he may feel ashamed.

15         Yet do not regard him as an enemy, but warn him as a brother.  (NIV)


Acts 20:30-31

30         Even from your own number men will arise and distort the truth in order to draw away disciples after them.

31         So be on your guard! Remember that for three years I never stopped warning each of you night and day with tears. (NIV)


If you really love your brother, you will warn him as Paul did (maybe even with tears). 


1 John 3:10
This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not a child of God; nor is anyone who does not love his brother.
(Whole Chapter: 1 John 3 In context: 1 John 3:9-11)


1 John 4:20
If anyone says, "I love God," yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen.
(Whole Chapter: 1 John 4 In context: 1 John 4:19-21)


Of course, there is a polite protocol to follow for the ministry of warning, which I won’t go into other than this exception:


1 Tim 5:19-20

19         Do not entertain an accusation against an elder unless it is brought by two or three witnesses.

20         Those who sin are to be rebuked publicly, so that the others may take warning.  (NIV)


For more details about that, you can read about church discipline.



So the bible defines the term “wickedness” by these “acts that lead to death”.  Anyone who practices them, regardless of their beliefs, will not inherit the kingdom of God.


Matthew 7:23
"And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; [Ps 6:8; Matt 25:41; Luke 13:27] DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS.'
(Whole Chapter: Matthew 7 In context: Matthew 7:22-24)


1 John 3:4
Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and [Rom 4:15; 1 John 5:17] sin is lawlessness.
(Whole Chapter: 1 John 3 In context: 1 John 3:3-5)


Furthermore, a Christian may make mistakes, but they will never commit an abomination, such as practicing lawlessness.


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