5 Ways To Recognize Sin

As a pastor I have many conversations with people about their sin and what it looks like to repentant or not.  What I have noticed over the years of speaking with people, as well as tendencies I have noticed in myself, I have found 5 common traits.  These traits vary in order and magnatude depending on the persons background and how they view their sin but its always there.

1. Talking Spiritual/Religiously But Not Living It: I have found that many people that are living in unrepentant sin will want to talk about theological issues but do not let any of those issue effect how they live.  They will speak of concerts and books that speak much of Jesus but refuse to allow those things to sanctify them.

2. Deferring Sin Onto Someone Or Something Else: When confronted with their sin they will always defer to someone else’s “worse” sin.  Many times they will use this other persons sin as an excuse for their on sin.  “They they hadn’t had done ___________ then I wouldn’t have done ____________”

3. Living Two Lives:  Because sin separates us from others and from God, those caught in sin will begin to naturally live two lives.  One life will be the life that everyone “expects” from them and the other they will live as they please.

4. Separating Ones Self From Community: This is similar from living to lives but takes on a deeper meaning when lived out.  Not only does the person live two lives they deliberately take themselves out of community with other believers or those that would speak Gospel truth into their lives.  Being separate from the church relieves the pressure on them and also allows them to live with less rebuke about their sin.

5. Lack Of Worship: Thought less noticeable the lack of worship is a good indicate of someones heart.  This has little to do with worship styes (contemporary, hymn, etc) and more to do with true devotion.  One can not worship God if they are living in unrepentant sin.  Worship for an unrepentant sinner is painful because they know they should repent but love sin more that Jesus. This is one of the reasons they will separate themselves from community.

There are most likely more signs someone is living in unrepentant sin but through my years of being a pastor these are the ones I run into most.

A word of advice: Continually confess your sin, be repentant and cling to Jesus.  If you see any of these signs in your life run to the cross!