How Much Does Sin Weigh?

by Jeffrey W. Hamilton

The mule is a beast of burden. It carries heavy loads from one place to another. Yet for its great strength, it is not known for its speed. The burdens it carries, even when they are not present, slow the mule down.

Every burden is not physical. In Isaiah 43:24, God said the Israelites had burdened him with the load of their sins. Perhaps you are wondering how much can a sin weigh? Eighty pounds? Five pounds? There are many people who never felt the weight of sin in their lives. Perhaps you are one.   However, consider this point: If you placed a 200-pound chest of drawers on a dead man, would he feel it? Why not?

When sin runs rampant in our lives, it kills us (Ephesians 2:1-3) – not physically, but spiritually. And a man who is dead spiritually never feels the weight of sin in his life. A person given over to sin is not sensitive to its pressure (Ephesians 4:17-19).

Even though you may not feel the burden of sin in your life, it doesn’t mean it is not there. We can get used to many things. Like a mother whose hands become calloused to lifting hot pans, we can become calloused to the presence sin. It would be like running a marathon with ankle weights. Not too many people would get far before the extra weight simply tires them out. Yet, there are people who are trying to run the race of life while carrying all sorts of burdens.

Too many people carry the burdens of their sins around, never paying attention that they are there. They never realize how much it is hindering their lives and slowing them down. Yet it doesn’t have to be that way. You and I can cast off our sins because Jesus died for us (Hebrews 12:1-3). Don’t delay in making a fresh start (Acts 22:16, Romans 6:4).

For Further Study

Verses to Consider

  • Jeremiah 8:12
  • Luke 8:13-14
  • Luke 9:57-62
  • Luke 18:22-25
  • Luke 21:34
  • Romans 6:16-18
  • Romans 6:23
  • Romans 13:11-14
  • I Corinthians 9:24-27
  • Galatians 5:7
  • Ephesians 4:17-32
  • Philippians 3:13-14
  • Colossians 3:5-10
  • I Timothy 4:1-2
  • II Timothy 2:4
  • I Peter 2:1

Questions to Ponder

  1. Why do people blush? What would cause a person to stop blushing?
  2. What is it about sin that makes it a burden?
  3. How can our past be a burden to us?
  4. In the verses above, we are told to put aside or take off certain behaviors which are extra weights on our souls. List these things.
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