When we think of sin, what do we think of? We may think of things like murder, stealing, or even lying. We may think of an action, something that we do that is sinful. But have you ever thought about not doing something being sinful? Have you ever avoided doing something you should have done and then said, “I was just too busy to do that”? We must realize that sin can take another form besides an action. It can take the form of a simple thing called neglect. Neglect is so easy to fall into because all neglect asks you to do is nothing. In fact, we can go to Hell by just simply doing nothing.
Jesus addressed the rich young ruler in Luke 18 about the one thing he lacked, and that was to sell all that he had to give to the poor to lay up treasure in Heaven. The sad part about the story was that he went away sorrowful because he knew there was one thing that stood between him and God, and that one thing he lacked he couldn’t do because he couldn’t let go of his riches. Solomon tells us in Ecclesiastes 9:10, “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all of your might.” This implies that if you find something to do, and it’s a good work for the Lord we should do it, and not just do it, do it with all of our might. James 4:17 says, “To him that knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin.” It’s a big deal to God when we refuse to do something however small it may be to us. Jesus depicts the Day of Judgment in Matthew 25 as a day when people are judged not only for what they did but for what they did not do as well. Many people will be shocked to find out that they did not do all that they needed to do, even though they became a Christian and lived what they thought was a godly life. God will still say, “Depart from me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the Devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you gave me no food; I was thirsty and you gave me no drink; I was a stranger and you did not take me in, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.” It’s a disturbing thought to think of ourselves in Hell, not for what we did but for what we didn’t do. Imagine having an eternity to think about one thing we didn’t do.
One of those things for most people is just simply obeying the gospel. There are so many good people in this world that you would trust your lifetime savings with, but when it comes to being a faithful Christian, they haven’t even begun. It is such a sad thing to look at so many people who are honest, giving people, but haven’t put on Christ in the waters of baptism. But what about the Christian? Ask yourself the question “Am I lacking?” Examine yourself to make sure you haven’t left anything undone. Is there something standing between you and God, causing you to sin because of your lack of work? There are so many things we could be doing but sometimes we get caught up with ourselves trying to satisfy our needs.
Think of all the shut-ins that need visiting or all of those that are ill that need encouraging. Think of all of those that need a helping hand from us every day. Remember that living this life for ourselves is all in vain, but living for others is what’s important. Even though we don’t have a long time on this earth to make a difference, we must strive every day to make an impact on the lives around us for good. Jesus said to lay up treasure in Heaven where moths do not corrupt and where thieves do not break in and steal. Living a life of self-satisfaction will corrupt us, but living a life for others will strengthen us spiritually and will lay up for ourselves treasure in Heaven that will last an eternity.