Sin is falling short of God’s kind of goodness.
We like to categorize sins as major and minor, and that might be useful for writing laws and operating a police force but should not be used to assuage our consciences. Anyway, we do a very poor job of ranking sins.
Sexual immorality comes to the mind of most Americans when the word “sin” is mentioned. In the Ten (Exodus 20:1–17) there are nine other commandments also listed.
If asked, most of us would rate Sodom’s sin as infinitely worse than any sin in the Galilean town of Capernaum. In fact, you may not even be aware of what Capernaum’s sin was (although you are sure you know what Sodom’s sin was. But see Ezekiel 16:49f). However, see what Jesus said about this: “And you, Capernaum, will not be exalted to heaven, will you? You will descend to Hades; for if the miracles had occurred in Sodom which occurred in you, it would have remained to this day. Nevertheless I say to you that it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for you.” (Matthew 11:23f)
So, we should acknowledge three things.
1. We are bad at comparing sins (see above).
2. The result of sin, any sin great or small, is death. (Romans 6:23)
3. All of us are sinners. (Romans 3:23)
Thankfully, the story does not end there. Our Lord Jesus Christ gave Himself to satisfy God’s totally fair judgment against us and to clothe us in His own kind of righteousness.
“But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him.” (Romans 5:8–9)