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Core Christianity: Tough Questions Answered

5 Things to Keep in Mind as a Sinner and a Saint

by Silverio Gonzalez posted April 24, 2016

500 years ago, the German reformer Martin Luther gave great advice that is often misunderstood: sin boldly.

I know people who worry so much, that they do nothing. They are so afraid to fail that they let life pass them by. They never take risks. Rather than fail, people do something much worse: they do nothing. The solution is simple: go out and live, do something, and sin boldly. Here are five things to do as a sinner and a saint:

1. Admit that our best is always sinful.

“We have all become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous deeds are like a polluted garment. We all fade like a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, take us away” (Isa. 64:6).

2. Understand your freedom.

“There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death” (Rom. 8:1–2).

3. Know your struggle and temptations.

“What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this, that your passions are at war within you? You desire and do not have, so you murder. You covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have, because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions” (James 4:1–3).

4. Go out and do your best. Don’t worry that you will make mistakes. 

“For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, ‘Abba! Father!’” (Rom. 8:14–15).

5. Repent daily; trust Christ daily.

“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” (1 John 1:8–9).

Photo of Silverio Gonzalez

Silverio Gonzalez

Silverio Gonzalez is a husband and father. He earned his B.A. in Philosophy from the University of California, Santa Barbara, and his Master of Divinity from Westminster Seminary California.

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