Editor’s Note: Guest editorials/articles are the opinion of the author only, and do not reflect the opinions or positions of the staff of this blog.
by Rafael Perez
Editor’s note: Rafael’s books can be found on Amazon
So let’s get to the point….sin is sin and grace is grace. What do I mean by that? First off, what I’m about to say is not my opinion. It’s not something I made up. It was Jesus Himself, the Second Person of the most Holy Trinity…God in the Flesh, who came into the drama of human history and identified the problem of the human condition. This problem is called sin. It’s not a mental illness. It’s not a subjective case by case issue. It’s not a disease. Sin is a real spiritual state that we are all in. It is also an action. This action is completely in our control. We will it. We choose it. We do it.
Or we don’t.
That right there is the area that we must examine if we are to recognize the horror of sin and its consequences…which is death and separation from God. The biggest challenge facing our times, our zeitgeist, our modern world is that the lines between what is sin and what isn’t is fading away. What used to be known as sin for centuries have in just a few decades given way to the poisons of lies that subjective and relativistic thought has produced. Our modern world today is only seeing with open eyes the reaping of this now. It is no accident either. There are no coincidences in the spiritual realm. Sin is a spiritual problem that manifests itself in the physical realm. It kills both body and soul. Soul more apparent than body. Body follows quickly though, for both were made by God for glory. Both then are subject to ruin due to sin. We are not just spiritual creations. We are physical creations too. What the ultimate reason is for God creating the physical universe I don’t know, but I do know that He made it for glory as well. A perfect unity of both realms, spiritual and physical. God makes no mistakes. He’s the Creator. But His creation….us…we make mistakes, pretty much on a regular basis.
But let us not confuse sin with a mistake. For sin for it to be a sin it is absolutely connected to a deliberate act of the will. Mistakes have an “oops” factor tied to it. There is no OOPS in Sin. Sin is an act that is willful and deliberate and is fundamentally opposed to God and all that God is and what God does. Sin by the constitution of its very own nature divorces itself from the truth of Who God is and at the end Who We REALLY are supposed to be. Just think of any really bad thing you’ve ever done and challenge yourself to think that what happened was just a “mistake”. If you are honest with yourself, you will see that you chose it, not blundered into it. I Know I did. A lot. I’ve deliberately sinned against God almost regularly.
We must also address the truth that the mistake that is made by many is not realizing something is a sin. We have either not been told or we rely on our feelings to distinguish whether we did something wrong or not. That would be a real problem. Feelings are subjective and can change. Sins are objective and do not. We might feel good doing something that has been claimed a sin by God Himself but as St. Paul said, “Everything is lawful for me’, but not everything is beneficial” (1 Corinthians 6:12). As far as making mistakes go, that’s where it ends. Anything after that takes prisoners….by the droves.
So how do we address this? Should we beat ourselves up about it? Should we excuse it? We should address it by being real about it. That involves being honest with ourselves before we owe it to anyone else. Does that mean we should bury our heads in the sand and ignore when others sin, we don’t call them on it? That’s dangerous turf right there. I’ve lost friendships because I called my former friends on their sin for identifying it for what it is. These are people who used to love God and Jesus and then later abandoned their faith for the lies of agnosticism and atheism. So now the only god they care about is themselves…and that’s it. Their sense of sin and grace has become skewed and marred by the dangerous philosophies of this world that tells us to not judge others…the only command they will take from Jesus while they scratch out everything else He said about sin and judgment, salad picking what God the Son said to suit their own lives and tricking themselves into thinking their lives are their own. Sin cuts out the spiritual faculties of discerning good from evil. Over time the capacity to tell the difference becomes diluted. We have intellect. We have will. That’s what makes us different from any animal on the planet earth. We were created in God’s image. Intellect. Will. A Conscience. All of this was created for glory. We mold it into disgrace by creating God in OUR image as opposed to the other way around. We create a social activist Jesus…not the God of the Bible…the God of the Church He founded. We ”become as gods, knowing good and evil”…..if you don’t know that quote, that’s the quote of our ancient enemy….the Serpent in the Garden of Eden. Satan. Whether there was a literal Adam and Eve, or a Garden of Eden is not the topic here. That’s another discussion. What’s important here is that from the very beginning we have had a spiritual enemy who hates us so much that he would do anything…and has done anything and everything to make sure humanity is damned. Lost. I know I’m talking like a “religious kook” so the ones who accuse me of “judging” shouldn’t throw stones if there is a mirror in the way.
I digress. The demonic is dedicated to the disintegration of the moral code in humanity. For centuries we saw sexual sin as sexual sin. We saw murder as murder. We saw idolatry as idolatry. This was always what it was. Now it’s about your opinion. That’s all that matters. Forget what truth is. Forget the moral law. We live in a world where such things are considered oppressive. Judgmental. Narrow. Bigoted. Hateful even. And we bend back. We cave in to the pressure, even if we still feel a nudging from within that tells us what is happening here is wrong. I use birth control, don’t judge. I’m gay and I’m living that way, don’t judge. I mess with crystal healings and divination…don’t judge. I practice Santeria…don’t judge…I divorced my wife and shacked up with someone else…don’t judge. I had an abortion and I would do it again because it’s my body…don’t judge. Only God can judge me. The irony on that popular statement is that most of the time no one is really concerned about God judging them. Screw what Ralph has to say about it. What does God have to say about it? Or is it just His opinion too?
That’s where the line is drawn. Is it just God’s Opinion? Do we care for it? Do we listen to it in our hearts? Or do we shut it out because we know we will not like what we find? To confront the truth is to confront a choice we must all make. We can dismiss it as another fabrication of the Church to control people…which is usually the way many people go with it….we can know this is what God truly is against as revealed by Jesus Christ and His Church…His Bride….and just choose to ignore it thinking we’ll get a pass….hopefully….We can change faiths like underwear until we find the right one that fits in well with our lifestyle…our sinful lifestyle…so that we don’t feel judged and keep being spoon fed lies to accommodate a lifestyle contrary to the natural and moral law that is of God….that WE define what sin is…that we can “know” what good and evil is….sound familiar? Our eyes will be opened…knowing good and evil…we will be as gods…we make up our own moral code…our way…not God’s.
The lie of Eden has infected humanity like a cancer. It continues to eat away at it. Yet like someone said to me so many years ago in a retreat house in Manhattan God doesn’t make junk. And He doesn’t. That’s the point. He created us good. He created us special…unique…a different soul with different personalities that make each of us so unique that we are not just a creation of God’s…we are His delight. He doesn’t want a personal relationship with us…sorry protestant brothers and sisters but we can have a personal relationship with our pets. No…He wants to have a love affair with us. That’s the passion as revealed by blood, thorns and nails. That’s the point of the cross. That in spite of our sins He still became sin on our behalf so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him (2 Corinthians 5:21). Being in Him and Him being in us…that unity…that oneness…that’s what completes us. That’s what Heaven is all about.
You can see my Channel Rev 21 Films on Youtube for more about the Catholic Faith
You can also pick up my book Theos, A Personal Journey on Amazon Kindle.
God bless you.
Pray for the Church in these dark days.