Sins by accidental, by naivety or by omission, and their Spiritual Consequence


If you don’t do what you know is right, you have sinned. James 4:17

How grave can sins be by error, by naivety, or even by omission; and how much can they affect the development of the spiritual life of a believer?

Spiritually, ignoring is not an excuse, nor does it avoid judgment or punishment. Unfortunately, however, it becomes a legal right for darkness to operate against the faith of one who seeks to act according to the Will of the Lord.

Even earthly laws based on principles not necessarily spiritual have recognized that ignorance of the law does not exempt its fulfillment, and therefore does not serve as an excuse to evade its punishment.

A biblical case that confirms and helps us understand this situation is the case of the three years of famine that the country suffered during the reign of David; a famine that apparently had no reason to be, it turned out to be provoked by an action of King Saul, David’s predecessor, against the Gibeonites.

And there was a famine in the days of David three years, year after year; and David inquired of Jehovah. And Jehovah said, It is for Saul, and for [his] house of blood, because he slew the Gibeonites 2 Samuel 21:1

David and his people were unaware of the existence of such a situation, however it affected them as much as if they themselves had provoked.

Sins by mistake, by naïveté, or by omission, proper or familiar, can be as disastrous as those caused under the knowledge of the laws that forbid them.

One might think that the subject is an academic subject, proper only to scholars, to exegetes, or to teachers of the theological faculties.

But no, it is not. It is a simple theme that applies to the most neophytes in the Word. I proceed to explain it to you.

One day reading the text of Matthew 12 I was confronted with the following text,

He that is not with me is against me, and he that gathers not with me scatters. Matthew 12:30

And the times I had read it, I had seen in the, He who is not with me, an enemy openly declared against God. That day I was confronted with the fact that such a text refers to sins by accident, by ignorance and/or by omission.

It is not that they are aware that they are against God, it is that they made mistakes in ignorance or by omission, and they do not know it.

Looking again at the text of Matthew 12 we will realize that it lists the consequences of being against Him and scattering.

31For this reason I say unto you, Every sin and injurious speaking shall be forgiven to men, but speaking injuriously of the Spirit shall not be forgiven to men. 32And whosoever shall have spoken a word against the Son of man, it shall be forgiven him; but whosoever shall speak against the Holy Spirit, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this age nor in the coming [one]36But I say unto you, that every idle word which men shall say, they shall render an account of it in judgment-day: 37for by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.

The text refers to at least four situations in which the person may incur and not realize that he has fallen into such a sin.

  • To blaspheme against the Holy Spirit; that is, to attribute the activity to the Holy Spirit when in reality it is a demonic activity, or on the contrary, to identify demonic participation when in reality it is the work of the Holy Spirit.
  • To speak against the Holy Spirit, that is, to oppose an argument contrary to what is prophetically established.
  • To speak idly, that is, to speak without meaning, without purpose, and
  • To be condemned for what one speaks. One makes judgments about oneself.

I confess that this frightened me, because I immediately asked myself, “How many times have I been, or still am, against Him, and I have not known?

What does the Word tell us about how to work these situations?

Returning again to the text of Matthew 12,

33Either make the tree good, and its fruit good; or make the tree corrupt, and its fruit corrupt. For from the fruit the tree is known. 34Offspring of vipers! how can ye speak good things, being wicked? For of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. 35The good man out of the good treasure brings forth good things; and the wicked man out of the wicked treasure brings forth wicked things.

The remedy is, first of all, make the tree good,

Either make the tree good, for from the fruit the tree is known.

How can a bad tree turn into a good tree? Simple, because of the soil where it is planted. The tree is the result of the ground. We read it in the Scriptures,

21And it shall come to pass in that day, I will hear, saith Jehovah, I will hear the heavens, and they shall hear the earth; 22and the earth shall hear the corn, and the new wine, and the oil; and they shall hear Jizreel. Hosea 2:21, 22

Notice the order, the soil responds to what has been sown, to what has been sown by man.

A bad production is not the result of a bad seed, not even of an inadequate sower, it is the product of a poor land; for that reason, we now understand God’s regulation to let the land rest,

34Then shall the land enjoy its sabbaths all the days of the desolation, when ye are in your enemies’ land; then shall the land rest, and enjoy its sabbaths. Leviticus 26:34

Make the tree good, it means changing the earth that is feeding the tree. Where are we spiritually feeding from?

And, in the second place,

Transforming the nature of the heart, let’s look at the rest of the text from Matthew 12,

O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. 35A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things.

Let us review the question,

How can you speak well, being evil?

Let’s check the establishment for truth,

The bad man from the bad treasure brings out bad things.

Being in good soil is not a guarantee of change, it is necessary to make additional adjustments.

This leads us to review the provisions in Moses’ Law about sins out of ignorance,

The Lord told Moses 2to say to the community of Israel: Offer a sacrifice to ask forgiveness when you sin by accidentally doing something I have told you not to do. Leviticus 4:1, 2

Let us review the question,

How can you speak well, being evil?

Let’s check the establishment for truth,

The bad man from the bad treasure brings out bad things.

Being in good soil is not a guarantee of change, it is necessary to make additional adjustments.

This leads us to review the provisions in Moses’ Law about sins out of ignorance,

The Lord told Moses 2to say to the community of Israel:  Offer a sacrifice to ask forgiveness when you sin by accidentally doing something I have told you not to do. Leviticus 4:1, 2

The entire chapter 4 deals with the matter, treating the situation according to the dignity of the one who has erred, but in all of them it stands out,

And he shall take away all the fat and burn it upon the altar…

What does it mean to burn the fat?

It means to burn the bad man, this of course so that he does not continue to draw evil things out of the evil treasure.

The instructions of the Law were not simply ritual, they had as their background the purpose that every time such a sacrifice was presented, the bowels of the evil man, of whose abundance the mouth speaks, was being burned, and a good man was emerging in his place.

It also stands out in the reading of Leviticus 4,

After the sin on which they offended has been understood,…

This means that it is a personal, individual and non-transferable decision of one’s own.

Here the remedy for sin is completed by error, ignorance, or omission.

What if we are against Him and are scattering?

It is necessary to review all decisions made, actions taken, activities, plans, projects, arguments, words, thoughts, everything, without exception.

In the review we will discover details of things that we incur, naively, without double-mindedness, without hypocrisy, but that placed us against Him, and worse still, scattering. That is the time to burn the fat upon the altar.

A knowledge we must derive from all this, spiritual growth and development according to faith does not depend on good intentions, nor even on purity of heart; it depends on not transgressing the spiritual principles upon which the Kingdom of God is built.