But where sin increased, grace abounded all the more.
Our sin is great, and it has grave consequences. Sin distances us from God. It brings guilt and shame. It damages relationships, steals joy, mars goodness, disfigures beauty and destroys life. In other words, sin leads to death.
So consider for just a moment all that is wrong in this world. Here is a short list to get you started: poverty, broken families, human trafficking, violence, racism, abuse, loneliness, addiction and inequality. These things exist because sin exists.
Now consider all that is wrong in your heart. Here is another short list: selfishness, gluttony, worry, insecurity, stubbornness, laziness, lust, greed and pride. These things also exist because of sin.
This exercise isn’t designed to lead you to shame. It is designed to lead you to Jesus, because here is the good news of great joy that is announced in Jesus: Since Jesus is infinite, his sacrifice for sin is not just sufficient to deal with our sin; it is immeasurably more.
You see, our sins are finite in number. They are the product of finite beings rebelling in time and space. But Jesus is not finite, nor is he bound by time or space. He is infinite, which means his sacrifice for sin is more than able to deal with all of our sin. This means we can have peace and confidence that nothing will separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus.
I love how this is expressed in the hymn His Mercy Is More:
What love could remember no wrongs we have done
Omniscient, all knowing, He counts not their sum
Thrown into a sea without bottom or shore
Our sins they are many, His mercy is more