What is sin? And how can I stay away from it if I don’t know what it is? The general feeling today is, "It does not really matter...as long as it does not hurt anybody else. Besides, I am under Grace."
A lack of knowledge of what constitutes sin is only part of the problem. It seems that we have also lost the understanding of how bad sin really is. I have been browsing through some of John Piper’s stuff online. He notes that we have “lost the horror at offending the majesty of God's holiness through sin.”
Leaders are under so much pressure to make people happy (lest they lose their crowds) that they forsake the message of God's holiness and sin's horror, with the result that they gradually turn the gospel of grace into leniency and then license and then believe it themselves and act on it—"Grace will abound, so this one sin will not matter that much."
Perfectly innocent and good things may need to be sacrificed for the sake of vigilance against sin. But this will not happen where we have lost his horror at offending the holiness of God through sin. [end Piper]
A few years ago, I heard a pastor begin to use profanity occasionally. When asked about it, he said it’s not the words we say, but what’s in our heart that matters. Yes, it is very true that our heart is the main thing, but why look for an excuse to use words that the world uses every day for very profane, ungodly things?
But, I make similar excuses when I want to watch a TV show that I should not watch, or partake of a conversation that I shouldn’t, or…well, the list goes on.
Maybe this is the beginning of a renewed sensitivity to sin and the horror of offending God…