Bible teachings

What we thought about...



5th December, 2006

Seeing God articles
Faith & Reason articles
Bible Teachings articles

The worst sins of omission and commission

If asked what you consider the worst of sins — both of omission and commission — what would you say? Murder, adultery? Well, I'm going to throw my hat in the ring on this question. The starting point for this thesis rests on Jesus' words in Matthew 22:37-38:

Jesus said to him, "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment.”

So the worst sins are those that involve our attitude towards God rather than our actions towards our fellow man. Going by the scriptural coverage given to the topic of the glory of God, man's responsibility to seek the glory of God and the seriousness of failing to glorify God one can safely conclude that the worst sin of omission is failure to glorify God when and as we can and the worst sin of commission is refusal to do so. Glorifying God entails putting the spotlight on Him — His greatness and goodness. Seeking to give God (and, of course, Jesus Christ) credit and honor in the eyes of one's fellow man should take pride of place as the believer's greatest obsession:

Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God (1 Cor. 10:31; see also 6:20).

Man's failure to seek God's glory renders him as guiltworthy of divine wrath as any other sin of omission. God divided the tongues of human beings in order to scatter them abroad at the tower of Babel because they sought to make a name for themselves rather than for God (Gen. 11:4). He warned the priests of Israel of impending curses for their failure to glorify Him:

"If you will not hear, and if you will not take it to heart, to give glory to My name," says the Lord of hosts, "I will send a curse upon you, and I will curse your blessings" (Mal. 2:2).

Worse is the sin of commission of refusing to give honor and credit to God at all times. Looking to the end of this age, the apostle John in Revelation revealed the major reason for divine wrath:

Then the fourth angel poured out his bowl on the sun, and power was given to him to scorch men with fire. And men were

scorched with great heat, and they blasphemed the name of God who has power over these plagues; and they did not repent and give Him glory (16:8-9).

Worst of all is the active arrogation to oneself of honor that belongs to God. When Herod killed the apostle James and persecuted the church, God let him get away with it — only till the judgment, of course. But when he allowed folks at Caesarea to treat him as a god and not as a man, God allowed His righteous anger to boil over:

Then immediately an angel of the Lord struck him, because he did not give glory to God. And he was eaten by worms and died (Acts 12:23).

A number of Bible students recognize the duty that rests upon us all to seek God's glory in all we do. The Catholic Encyclopedia puts it this way:

We exist to give God glory and to find our happiness, but we find our happiness only in giving God glory; and it is only in Christ that we can give God glory. Thus the primary purpose of our lives is to give God glory in and through Christ, so to achieve our happiness (“Heaven”).

New Testament scholar, David Carson, sums up Jesus' ministry this way:

During his ministry on earth, the Son's consistent aim, and his achievement, was to bring glory to his Father… That was, no less, the Son's purpose in completing his mission by going to the cross (12:28)… Now in the splendor of his exaltation, the Son's purpose does not change: he enables his own to do “greater things” in order that he may bring glory to the Father (The Gospel According to John, p. 497).

God is more glorious than the entire universe (Ps. 8:1). Simple logic dictates that His children of all nationalities will recognize His glory and give Him appropriate credit (Ps. 96:7). But oh no, not us. Small wonder God seems disinclined — at least He is showing no sign of doing anything about it yet — to deliver us from the catastrophe of global warming that we are bringing on ourselves. When will we stir from our slumber and shoulder the delightful burden of giving God credit for all good things? With the glory of God evident all around us in the works of His hands, we are without excuse for our failure to honor Him (Rom. 1:20).

For some amazing insights into the glory of God as revealed through the creation, see the Dawn to Dusk book, "How Great Thou Art".


Believe it or not, we aren't the only ones to have opinions and hold convictions. If you want to know what others think, then click away to the left and you will be transported to the entertaining, thought-provoking world of public opinion.


Floating Navigation Bar


© Dawn to Dusk Publications

Best viewed at a screen resolution of 1024 x 768
Optimized for Internet Explorer