Judgment Throne ? most solemnly described ? is for all the ?undones? and not the ?dones.? People are perpetually afraid of doing wrong but unless they are doing its reverse energetically, they do it all day long and the degree does not matter.? The Roman Catholic Church proceeds upon the supposition that she can determine the precise malignity of every offence and assign its proper penance at the confessional. Thornwell, Theology, 1:424-441, says that ?all sins are venial but one for there is a sin against the Holy Ghost,? yet ?not one is venial in itself for the least proceeds from an apostate state and nature.? We shall see, however, that the hindrance to pardon, in the case of the sin against the Holy Spirit, is subjective rather than objective.
J. Spencer Kennard: ?Roman Catholicism in Italy presents the spectacle of the authoritative representatives and teachers of morals and religion themselves living in all forms of deceit, corruption, and tyranny. Lying, fraud, fornication, marital infidelity, and even murder were classed as venial sins, all of which may be atoned for and forgiven or even permitted by the mere payment of money and, at the same time, classing as mortal sins disrespect and disobedience to the church.?
The following distinctions are indicated in Scripture as involving different degrees of guilt:
A. Sin of nature, and personal transgression.
Sin of nature involves guilt, yet there is greater guilt when this sin of nature reasserts itself in personal transgression. While this latter includes in itself the former, it also adds to the former a new element which is the conscious exercise of the individual and personal will. By virtue of which a new decision is made against God, special evil habit is induced and the total condition of the soul is made more depraved. Although we have emphasized the guilt of inborn sin, because this truth is most contested, it is to be remembered that men reach a conviction of their native depravity only through a conviction of their personal transgressions. For this reason, by far the larger part of our preaching upon sin should consist in applications of the law of God to the acts and dispositions of men?s lives.
<401914> Matthew 19:14 ? ?to such belongeth the kingdom of heaven? = relative innocence of childhood; 23:32 ? ?Fill ye up then the measure of your fathers? = personal transgression added to inherited depravity, in preaching, we should first treat individual transgressions and thence proceed to heart-sin, and race-sin. Man is not wholly a spontaneous development of inborn tendencies, a manifestation of original sin. Motives
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