Are all sins equal in the eyes of God?
By Christopher Jethro
Last Updated: Dec 13, 2017
Last Updated: Dec 13, 2017
The Bible does not say that all sins are equal. Jesus told Pilate in John 19:11, "You would have no power over me if it were not given to you from above. Therefore the one who handed me over to you is guilty of a greater sin." As you can clearly see, it says "greater sin." The Bible is clear therefore that some sins are greater, or worse, than others. Greater and lesser sins means sins are obviously not all weighed equally, and logically cannot all be equal in the eyes of God.
Even though all sins may not be equal in the eyes of God, this does not give grounds for excusing or justifying any sins. All sins are wrong and God takes them all seriously, but some are more wrong than others. Rape is obviously more evil than stealing a piece of gum. No sin can be justified, but if you wanted to know which sins are worse than others you would need to read the Bible. Only certain sins are called an “abomination” or deserving of death for instance.
Some people think all sins are equal in God's eyes because they think everyone is punished in Hell the same way. But the Bible says that there are different levels of damnation in Hell. For instance, Jesus said, "Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For ye devour widows' houses, and for a pretence make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation" (Matthew 23:14). This verse shows that some people, in this case the Pharisees, will have a worse damnation than others. In Luke 12, Jesus described His Second Coming in a parable where the master returns to finds his servants doing evil. In verses 47-48, He said "that servant who knew his master’s will but did not get ready or act according to his will, will receive a severe beating. But the one who did not know, and did what deserved a beating, will receive a light beating." From this we again see different levels of punishment: a harsher one for those who knew the truth of Jesus but rebelled, and a lighter punishment for those who were in ignorance but still guilty of sins.
The Bible says again and again that God judges people according to the evil they have done (Isaiah 59:18, 2 Corinthians 11:15, Revelation 20:12-13, Romans 2:6). The level of one’s punishment in Hell is according to (measured by) the evil that they have done. We copy this same principle in our own laws as well. We have different laws that each have different consequences and fines corresponding to (according to) the offense. In this same way, certain sins are worse than others and people in Hell will experience different corresponding punishments. As Scripture shows, there not only different levels of sin but also different levels of punishment for sins in Hell. All sins are not equal in the eyes of God. They are each judged by God on a different, appropriating scale in which He takes into consideration all factors and gives a fair punishment fitting for the level of evil committed.