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Sin That Does Not Lead to Death
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By Pastor Mick Wolfe
April 1, 2019

1Jn 5:16-18 If anyone sees his brother committing a sin not leading to death, he shall ask and God will for him give life to those who commit sin not leading to death. There is a sin leading to death; I do not say that he should make request for this. (17) All unrighteousness is sin, and there is a sin not leading to death. (18) We know that no one who is born of God sins; but He who was born of God keeps him, and the evil one does not touch him.

Sin Leading to Death

1. The essence of sin is a disposition or approach toward God by which He is not one’s supreme commitment or love.

2. This is referred to as one’s heart.

3. In the life of such a one operating from this disposition is can be said that they are living in a state of sin or practicing sin. Consequently, everything that springs forth from such a heart is a manifestation of sin.

4. When God evaluates us, He searches one’s heart – one’s ultimate commitment, not simply the outward activities like going to church, reading the Bible, being nice and friendly, etc.

Consider: “…to those who are defiled and unbelieving, nothing is pure, but both their mind and their conscience are defiled” (Titus 1:15) and “ Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness” (1Jn 3:4).

5. This is sin leading to death.

Sin Not Leading to Death

1. One who has come to repentance has had a change of heart from a wrong ultimate commitment to a supreme commitment and love for God.

2. In this state of heart, the internal motive behind the external act leads to practicing righteousness as referred to in 1 Jn.3:6-9.

“No one who abides in Him sins; no one who sins has seen Him or knows Him. Little children, make sure no one deceives you; the one who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous; the one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil. No one who is born of God practices sin, because His seed abides in him; and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.”

3. The goal of one with such a heart is to please God and, consequently, the choices we make are a reflection of this goal.

4. With such a heart and goal firmly established, one yet has the challenge of fully understanding what is pleasing to God and the practical battle of finding victory over entrenched patterns.

5. It is possible, though not desirable or acceptable, that one with a right heart can make a choice that proves to be contrary to their purpose. This should not be confused with continuing to willfully sin (He.10:26).

6. Such sin is sin not leading to death but, instead, sin that needs to be corrected by greater learning, discipline and reliance upon the Lord and the Holy Spirit.
Consider: Titus 1:15 “To the pure, all things are pure…”

Caution: If a person is glad to hear that they can sin (as described above) or sees this as a license to do so it is likely that they still have a wrong heart and are living in sin, practicing sin that leads to death.

The goal of the true convert is to get a away from sin, not with sin.


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Pastor: Mick Wolfe
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