So far so good.
But it is Numbers 15: 30-31 that caught my attention. “”‘But suppose someone sins on purpose. It does not matter whether he is an Israelite or an outsider. He speaks evil things against the LORD. He must be cut off from his people. He has made fun of what the LORD has said. He has broken the LORD’s commands. He must certainly be cut off. He is still guilty.'”
Under the Old Covenant if you sinned Intentionally there was no remedy, no atonement and no forgiveness. Not only that but there is lasting punishment for the remainder of your life here on earth, you are to be excluded from your family, your friends, your community and your nation: you are to be ‘cut off.’
Wow – that’s harsh! Under the Old Covenant the willfull disobedience that we have all seen in children, when seen in our response to God, results in permanent guilt and exclusion.
What struck me deeply was this question: How often do I sin unintentionally? – not very often. How often to I sin intentionally? – probably most of the times when I sin.
I am so glad that I live under grace and not under the Law, under the New Covenant and not under the Old Covenant. In the New Covenant there is no separation between Intentional and Unintentional sin, both are sin, both took Jesus to the cross, both are forgiven in the amazing love sacrifice of Christ on the Cross. But this passage opened my eyes a little bit more on how God sees sin, and it’s not comfortable.