To clearly answer this question it is first necessary to establish some definitional terms. Sin is an intentional or unintentional thought or act that separates us from our relationship with God or our oneness with God. It can be generally characterized as any serious failure in thought or deed that could’ve been avoided.
At a minimum, it is a failure to live up to God’s standards starting with but not limited to just the 10 Commandments. Our level of awareness or conscience helps us know when we have sinned. It is impossible to live with out sinning. The Bible says, “all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.” That is true because all humans have inherited a sin nature and being no longer perfect they sin. (Romans 3:23)
The emotional, mental and physical burden of living one’s life under sin and it’s negative effect on us and others, without the benefit of forgiveness, is a well-documented fact of life, i.e. guilt, depression, anger, hate, broken relationships, greed and much more. Fortunately, God’s forgiveness will allow us to live without these burdens negatively consuming our lives. Forgiveness is both a once-in-a-lifetime experience at the moment of salvation and a continuous process for the rest of our lives. The good news of Christ Jesus is that He paid the price for our sins at the cross and now God’s grace will redeem us. When we trust in Jesus as Lord and Savior, He will lift our burdens and make our lives purposeful and joyful. (Romans 5:8)
The Christian pathway to God requires faith and belief in and an experience with God beyond what is completely understandable. The traditional components of God’s forgiveness are a belief in the love of God, an acknowledgment of a sense of wrong thinking or doing (a separation from God), a confession that some thought or act caused the separation, an acknowledgment of the need for reconciliation with God, a genuine regret and request for forgiveness and acceptance of God’s grace and forgiveness and repentance or turning away from sin and following Jesus.
Just ask any of the millions upon millions of Christians who have experienced God’s grace and forgiveness. Remember, don’t forget to ask God as only God can forgive sins. When you do this you will be able to move forward in your life at peace with God and reborn into the continuing newness of life in Christ. And, you will have fellowship with Him now and forever. That’s really Good News.
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