What does not happen when I sin?
This is the second part of a two-part question. The first part delineated seven things that negatively happen when you sin. This will outline seven things that will not happen when you sin. These seven things do NOT mean you can do whatever you want. They do not mean it does not matter if you sin. They do not mean you have a “license to sin.” The first article outlines negative effects first, to sternly warn you not to wander into sin.
Yet, the grace of God is incredible. I would not do justice to who God is if these were not provided and given as hope to the growing believer. So take these in stride and press on to the upward call of God pursuing a life of holiness with all your heart, soul, mind and strength.
First, you do not cease to be God’s child. You become a child of God through faith. John wrote, “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name.” (John 1:12 NKJ) You became a child of God by faith (Eph. 5:8). Faith is non-meritorious. There is no merit before God for faith. Faith is dependence upon God’s work. There is no credit, or wage given to us for our faith. Faith is not a work. Once you are a child of God, you are always a child of God. You did not do anything to become a child of God, God did it all, therefore, there is nothing you can do to remove that status. John also wrote, “…who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.” (John 1:13 NKJ) In other words, a person doesn’t become a Christian because 1) he was born a Christian, or 2) because someone on earth made a decision or set of decisions for him, nor 3) even his own decision of faith; a person is born from above by the action of God.
Secondly, you do not cease to be a new creature in Christ. Paul wrote, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.” (2 Cor. 5:17 NKJ) There are two words for “new” in the Greek New Testament. This word “new” means “newness of quality” in contrast to the other word for “new,” which means “newness related to time.” The quality of being a new creature means the Christian has been transformed and can never revert to the unsaved status. Why is that true of the Christian? Solomon wisely said, “I know that whatever God does, it shall be forever. Nothing can be added to it, and nothing taken from it. God does it, that men should fear before Him.” (Ecc. 3:14 NKJ) When you sin, you do not cease to be a new creation.
Thirdly, you do not forfeit eternal life. How long is eternal life? Eternal. That is what you receive at salvation. Some people will say “everlasting” life as some Bible versions translate John 3:16, but it is referring to the same thing. Paul wrote, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Rom. 6:23 NKJ) Sin results in death, but God gives eternal life in Jesus. Once you have eternal life, you have life eternally. It will not be forfeited. Eternal life is your relationship with God as John wrote, “And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.” (John 17:3 NKJ) In fact, Paul highlighted this, “For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.”(Rom 11:29 NKJ) What God has done (given eternal life), will not be taken away. When you sin, you do not forfeit eternal life.
Fourthly, you do not lose the Holy Spirit. Praise God for that, because He intimately works in your life through conviction to bring you to the point of repentance. John wrote, “And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever…” (John 14:16 NKJ) God gives the Holy Spirit with the purpose that He abides with you forever. Scripture calls that the indwelling of the Spirit (Rom. 8:9). As stated in the previous article, sin grieves the Holy Spirit (Eph. 4:30), but you do not lose the Holy Spirit. As Paul stated to the Corinthian Church, who were struggling in their carnality (living according to the flesh), “Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?” (1 Cor. 3:16 NKJ) The last verb “dwells” emphasizes the durative aspect of the verb. The Holy Spirit “keeps on dwelling” in you. This is for the Church Age believer. In the Old Testament time, God “endued,” that is “clothed” certain believers with the Holy Spirit, but He did not give the Holy Spirit to every believer permanently. That is why David cried out to God, “Do not cast me away from Your presence, and do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.” (Ps. 51:11 NKJ) God could take the enduement of the Holy Spirit from David, because David lived in the dispensation called the Jewish Age, but God will not remove the indwelling of the Holy Spirit today.
Fifthly, you do not become unfit for heaven. You are a citizen of heaven when you become a Christian – that does not change. Paul wrote,
- 20 For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ,
- 21 who will transform our lowly body that it may be conformed to His glorious body, according to the working by which He is able even to subdue all things to Himself. (Phil. 3:20-21 NKJ)
The future tense1 of the verb “transform” declares Jesus will do this sometime in the future. There is no doubt. There is nothing that you can do to change it. It will happen. In fact you are positionally already seen by God as being seated with Christ in the heavens,
- If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God.
- 2 Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.
- 3 For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.
- 4 When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory. (Col. 3:1-4 NKJ)
Why is this true? Because the work God did is irrevocable and He has positionally made you perfect in Jesus Christ, “For by one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified.” (Heb. 10:14 NKJ) While you are perfected positionally, experientially, you still sin.
Sixthly, you do not lose your inheritance. You will not gain what God wants you to have (2 Jn. 1:8, 1 Cor. 3:15), but what you have by the work of God’s Holy Spirit in your life by faith, will not be lost. Peter said it best,
- 3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
- 4 to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you.” (1 Pet. 1:3-4 NKJ)
The good works, by the power of the Holy Spirit, are an inheritance that is incorruptible and undefiled and is reserved for you in heaven, even when you sin.
Seventhly, you do not eternally perish, as even backsliders make it into heaven. You may not look well prepared or even presentable as Paul wrote, “If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.” (1 Cor. 3:15 NKJ) As mentioned in the previous article, you will lose any works that were done by the flesh, instead of by the Holy Spirit, but you’ll make it into heaven – just a little smokey!
If you sin, these seven things will not happen to you. You will miss out on the rewards that God wants to give you. You will bring dishonor to the name of Jesus and you will not glorify Him. But for His sake and His grace, He will not cast you out and you may squeak, or should I say, squeeze crustily (because of burnt outsides), into heaven. These are not an excuse to sin. These are not a reason you can live the way you want. These are not a license, so that you can choose what you want in life. God calls you to holy living. God also is in a life-long process of discipling you into the image of Jesus (Rom. 8:29). God is so awesome that a growing Christian, a true and genuine child of God, will pursue the righteousness of God with all of his heart, mind, soul and strength.
1Sometimes grammar is used to explain the meaning of verses. This will not cause a humble person to give up, but to pursue deeper his relationships with Jesus Christ. In this case, the future active indicative means that Jesus will make the action happen in the future and it is a reality that cannot be changed. That is the meaning of that one verb. It is in the indicative mood, which declares the reality of the fact.