But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.
Quite often I hear people say a sin is a sin, there is no difference in the sight of God. Is this statement true? Does God look at murder just like he looks at stealing? I know I don't. I think people get confused because all sinners who do not repent go to the same lake of fire just like all who trust Jesus as their savior go to the same heaven. Whether you are a pastor or a pew sitter, it doesn't matter if you have been saved 50 years or one week we are all going to the same heaven.
Since every unbeliever will spend eternity in the lake of fire I think it leads some people to believe every sin is the same. Lets see what the scripture teaches. In Exodus 22 the Bible gives the legal structure concerning people who are caught stealing. The thief is to restore double to the victim. That's it, restitution, but if someone murdered a person, the punishment for taking a life was death. You see God did not classify all sins as the same, he looked at them differently and the punishment was also different. Just from a common sense point of view I would much rather someone steal from me than kill me.
Lets go to the new testament and read the words of Jesus. In Matthew 18:6 Jesus said if someone hurts a child it would be better for a millstone to be hung around their neck and cast into the depths of the sea. Jesus placed a degree of punishment on the sin of abusing a child, and the punishment was more severe.
I personally believe there are degrees of punishment in hell, in Acts 1:25 after Judas betrayed Jesus the Bible tells us he went to his own place. In Matthew 10:15, Jesus said the judgement given to people who rejected the apostles message would be more severe than the judgement Sodom and Gomorrah would receive. I could share many examples, but I think from a scriptural standpoint the Lord does not see every sin as the same, nor is the punishment for sin the same in every case.
Roman's 1 gives the progression of sin, if sin continues to progress and the sinner becomes more and more vile, eventually they will loose their conscience. From a pastor's heart all sins are not the same. If an alcoholic in a moment of weakness returns back to the bottle for a night its usually followed by a guilty conscience and headache, but if a pedophile returns to their former lifestyle their actions are catastrophic. I hope this helps to understand that God does not look at all sins the same, neither should we.
Pastor Ken Smith