The wages of sin is Death.
Daily we sin, and daily we are forgiven. Daily we fall, and daily we are lifted up. Daily we come short of the mark, and daily we are helped and guided toward it. Lets remember that each day, a born again Christian, is washed clean by the blood of our Lord Jesus. None of us have reached perfection, and none of us will in this life. Even though we may see our selves as much improved over where we started from, we should never become puffed up, and look down on anyone, who’s sins may be more apparent then our own.
1 John 1: 8 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.
I think back at the many times I have turned on the television, to see a TV preacher pounding his fist, and proclaiming judgement upon sinners. I am not advocating that any of us willfully sin because we are forgiven. I just believe that willfully or not, each day, in thought, word, or deed, we sin against the high standards of a perfect God. And in so doing, we become as guilty of the punishment we deserve, as the most lowly sinner we might come across.
James 2: 10 For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.
It was always the Pharisees that Jesus condemned. Not corrupt politicians, not harlots or thieves, not the brutal regime of the Roman Empire. The Pharisees were the ones who thought they were above sin, that they were righteous because of their strict adherence to the law of God.
Galatians 2: 21 I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain.
Why would God give us such a strict law? Why place something before us, that he knew we could not keep perfectly, and then punish us when we are unable to meet his high standards?
Romans 7: 12 Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good.13 Was then that which is good made death unto me? God forbid. But sin, that it might appear sin, working death in me by that which is good; that sin by the commandment might become exceeding sinful.
God gave us the law, to help us recognize our need for a Saviour. Christ did not come to do away with the law, he came and amplified it. He actually made it stricter then it was under the Old Covenant. The Pharisees thought they could keep the letter of the law, and by so doing gain favor with God. Jesus then gave them not only the letter, but also the spirit of the law. If they had not committed adultery, Jesus told them looking at a woman with any lust in their hearts was adultery. If they had not committed murder, Jesus told them yelling at their neighbor, or calling him a fool, was as good as murder, with hatred, or a lack of love in their hearts. He was trying to bring them, and us, to the point of hopelessness. A recognition that, only God, in the form of man, could keep the law perfectly. And only God, in the form of man, was worthy to take away the punishment that we all deserve, for falling short of such a high and holy standard.