The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said,
“Look the lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!”
John 1: 29
Often we forget just how much we sin, and that the Lord has said, “He who breaks one of my commands breaks all of them.” We often sin without even thinking about it; usually its little things like neglecting to tell the whole truth, forgetting to do something, or telling a small lie. We forget that God is holy, and that any sin is repulsive to him, and that even though we aren’t as sinful as some people, we are still in need of his forgiveness.
Justification can threaten to supplant the desire to stay faithful and true to God, with the desire to spend more time “working off’ our sins by any number of means. This is not to say that we should not try to perform good works or help people as all true Christians should, but rather — we should remember that it is not our deeds alone, but simple faith that saves us.
Around the world people are being born, living, and dying, most of them in conditions far worse than the ones we enjoy. In places like the Middle East, where Christians are persecuted and killed, the faithful are still standing strong, holding onto the belief that Jesus will return, and that when he does, he will repay them a hundred times over for their suffering. All around us there is sin, and it is hard to resist the temptation to join in with the rest of the world in any of thousands of activities that tempt us. But God knew this when he sent Jesus — when he sent “the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” to save us.
~Tate Garrett, age 16