Last night as I was reading through Scripture, I came across some verses that forced me to ask the question:
Is it possible to live without sin?
If you’re like me, your first response was probably “Of course not.” If you are religious, you probably even went as far as to start quoting Scripture such as Romans 3:10-12 which says, “None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God. All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one” or Romans 3:23 which says, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”
I mean think about it, we’re human. It’s natural to make mistakes, right? Those were the thoughts that were permeating my mind last night until I came across some different Scripture. Read it for yourself:
Everyone who makes a practice of sinning also practices lawlessness; sin is lawlessness. You know that he (Jesus) appeared in order to take away sins, and in him (Jesus) there is no sin. No one who abides in him (Jesus) keeps on sinning; no one who keeps on sinning has either seen him (Jesus) or known him (Jesus). Little children, let no one deceive you. Whoever practices righteousness is righteous, as he (Jesus) is righteous. Whoever makes a practice of sinning is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the works of the devil. No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God’s seed abides in him, and he cannot keep on sinning because he has been born of God. – 1 John 3:4-9
So we have Romans 3:10-12 and 3:23 telling us that we’ve all fallen short because of our sin and 1 John 3:4-9 telling us that we cannot keep sinning if we truly abide in Christ. Are you confused? Let me explain. Both Romans 3:10-12 and 3:23 alert us to the reality of our need for Jesus. Prior to engaging in a relationship with Christ, you and I were controlled by our sinful nature (that’s anyone reading this). Ephesians 2:1-3 says,
Once you were dead because of your disobedience and your many sins. You used to live in sin, just like the rest of the world, obeying the devil—the commander of the powers in the unseen world. He is the spirit at work in the hearts of those who refuse to obey God. All of us used to live that way, following the passionate desires and inclinations of our sinful nature.
So yes, we have all fallen short. We have all failed, messed up, rebelled again God, etc. But there is Good News! Ephesians 2:4-5 says, But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so much, that even though we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead.
So let’s bring all this together. Sin separates us from God. Sin, although enjoyable for a moment, is a pathway for destruction. The number one cause of death in the world today is sin (See Romans 6:23). While sin certainly demolishes life, there is a God (his name is Jesus) who conquered sin and death (See 1 Corinthians 15:56-57)!
When you surrender your life to Christ, you gave up your rights to control your life. In other words, your life is no longer your own. Your life is under new management. And now that Jesus abides in you, sin no longer has power.
So back to the original question, Is it possible to live without sin?
Yes. Jesus has defeated sin and death. Now that Jesus lives in you, you have the same power to overcome sin!