…for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus – Romans 3:23-24
Sometimes it is difficult for us to admit we are all “equal sinners” to God. We like to compare and contrast our wrongs, and perhaps make them out as not as bad as others.
It is true that different sins will result in different consequences here on earth. Telling a lie about why you missed work is clearly less impactful than murdering someone. The amount of pain that is caused and years of hurt is not even comparable. God is not downplaying the seriousness of these earthly results when He tells us we are all sinners. What He wants us to understand is that even when others are hurt or involved in our sinful deeds, ultimately all sin is actually committed against Him. We sin against God.
When we start weighing whether some sin is worse than another, it is almost always in order to excuse ourself in some way. But God hates all sin. It doesn’t matter if we fall down two inches from the finish line or 20 miles away. We have fallen short. We are all equal as sinners, and in God’s eyes every sin is just as shameful as every other sin.
Jesus said if you insult someone or think bad of them in your heart, you are guilty of murder. Have you ever insulted someone…? He also said if you lust in your heart you are guilty of being an adulterer. Ever had a thought like that about anyone…? At best we are all murderers and adulterers, so we can stop making comparisons and excuses now.
But even as we are equal in our sins, God treats us equally in His forgiveness. No matter what we, or anyone else, has done, God holds out salvation as a gift. We can all equally accept His grace through faith. This isn’t about us asking questions like “does that mean Hitler could be saved” — it is about what we as individuals believe about ourselves. It is about asking questions like: Are we a sinner? Do we need God’s forgiveness? Has God offered His grace to us? We have all fallen short, but we are all loved and can be forgiven! No matter who or what we are, God’s grace is amazing!