Have you committed a spiritual crime?

Posted on April 4, 2018 By Steve Gray

When most Christians think about sin, they think about “big” sins like murder, adultery, cheating, or lying. Few consider internal sin – like unforgiveness, malice, anger, prejudice or jealousy – to be a driving force for repentance. But these are all spiritual crimes that need not be overlooked.​

Admitting you have wickedness in your heart is not the popular thing to do, but it is the gateway to spiritual freedom and a closer relationship with God.​

The Church has allowed spiritual crimes to enter into their services and their hearts, and it’s time for a change. No longer should we settle for being loveless, passionless Christians who act the part but carry the burden of hidden sins in our hearts. Prejudice, malice, unforgiveness, hatred, envy, strife and all other internal sins are spiritual crimes that call for immediate repentance from God. It’s time to do a heart check, and you can start by examining the following:​

Your motives

Many Christians are so focused on looking and acting the part that they forget the Gospel is not about perfection, but a pure heart towards God.​

Ultimately, the fruit of your actions is rooted in the state of your heart. Doing the “right” thing is useless if your motive for doing so is wrong. If we focus on the state of our heart, then the fruit of our lives will simply mirror what is already inside of us.​

We must also detect any and all personal agendas that attempt to exalt ourselves or advance our will before God’s. It is time to truly be honest with ourselves and allow the Holy Spirit to reveal those secret, wicked places in our hearts that don’t look like His.​

Your words

The word of God says that every idle word we speak will be judged and that death and life are in the power of the tongue (Matthew 12:36; Proverbs 18:21). If we truly believed this (as we should) we would be much more careful about the things we say about others and ourselves.​

With every word He spoke, Jesus brought life, healing, restoration, wisdom, and power – we should desire to do the same. We should strive to live a life free of hurtful, harmful, unbiblical speech. We can’t have filthy speech and an impure heart and expect to bear good fruit. ​

Your actions

Jesus cared deeply about people, and he proved it through a sacrificial death and crucifixion. He was persecuted, beaten, slandered, hated, and betrayed, yet he still loved people. So why do we think we’re excluded from that same call to love people unconditionally with our actions?​​

It’s time to take a look at our hearts – both individually and corporately – and allow God to purify us from the inside out, that He can be glorified.