What if I sin after I'm saved?
"But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness." - 1 John 1:9
I came to know Christ as a teenager. I will never forget the feeling and determination I had in repenting of my sin and choosing to follow Jesus for the rest of my life.
Yet, after a short period of time, I began to fall short of my commitment to Him. I found myself feeling tempted again. I loved Jesus, I knew I did. But, I still had an overwhelming desire to sin again.
It made me wonder at the time: "What if I sin after I'm saved?"
Will I go to Hell? Will God leave me?
Let's talk about that.
To start off, just know that you WILL sin after you are saved. It is inevitable, everybody will at some point. We are all fallen people living in a fallen and sinful world (Rom. 3:23).
And nobody understands that reality more than God. The good news is that He has plenty of grace to go around for our inevitable mistakes.
After salvation, your sins are not going to send you to Hell or make God leave you (Rom. 8:38-39).
Specifically, 1 John 1:8-10 speaks to us sinning after salvation and what to do when it happens,
“If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us”
All Christians sin. No matter how perfect you may perceive them as.
God is ready and able to forgive us of are sins. The only prerequisite is confessing that sin to Him. Confession is just a spiritual term for acknowledging our mistakes and faults to God.
If we do not confess our sins regularly it remains as a wedge between us and God. Which is a serious matter.
Yes, our salvation is based on our faith in God's grace and gospel, but that does not mean we don't have to own up to our faults and failures along the way.
Remember this: NOTHING will ever separate you from God salvation wise. But, not acknowledging the sin in your life will result in an unclean conscience, guilt and a burden you were never meant to carry.
Perhaps a popular illustration will help clear things up (Creds: Gotquestions.org).
Think of your relationship with God like the sun shining through your window on a cold day. It is a little chilly inside but the sun's rays on your skin feel incredible.
Now, think of your sin as a dark shade that is pulled down in front of the window, blocking a good portion of the sun's warm rays and disrupting the delightful experience.
The sun, God's grace in this case, is of course strong enough to shine through the shade. But it still is dimmed and therefore not as impactful as it could be with the shade.
The only way to lift the shade is by consistently confessing your sins to God. In doing so, the shade lifts and you experience the full effect of His grace.
God never moved, nor did His grace weaken. It was sin that set up a barrier that blocked your ability to enjoy His forgiveness and mercy.
Acknowledging mistakes to God should be a daily practice for all Christians, not just at salvation and conversion.