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How Sin Separates Us From God: What The Bible Says

What Does The Bible Say About How Sin Separates Us From God?

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Published by Kimberly Wall

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Co-Founder, Disciple Group Leader, Author

Last Updated:


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Have you ever attended a service or listened to a message in which it was said that sin separates us from God? Sin may be seen as either disobedience toward God or flight from the divine will that he has for the world. Sinfulness is innate in the human race. We may sin both knowingly and unknowingly from time to time.

Consequently, you could have asked yourself, “Didn’t Jesus die to pay for my sins?” And if that is the case, why does my sin keep me from being united with him since the Bible assures me that I am already “in Christ”? Whether we are asking these questions consciously or unconsciously, we may begin to experience feelings of uncertainty and anxiety.

Key Takeaways

  • Sin separates us from God by disregarding Christ’s sacrifice, leading us to deceive ourselves, and disobeying the Holy Spirit, ultimately resulting in death and eternal separation from God’s grace.
  • The New Testament emphasizes God’s mercy and forgiveness through Christ’s sacrifice, ensuring that believers are not separated from God by their sins, highlighting the importance of repentance in restoring our relationship with God.
  • Repentance is essential for overcoming the separation caused by sin, allowing for forgiveness, salvation, and a renewed life in God’s presence through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.

How Does Sin Separate Us From God?

When Adam and Eve sinned for the first time, the whole human race went from a state of perfection to a state of utter depravity. To understand this concept, there are six biblical explanations for how sin prevents us from achieving full oneness with God.

1. We Disregard Christ’s Sacrifice For Humanity

For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there is no longer a sacrifice for sins.

— Hebrews 10:26

After repentance, sin denies Jesus Christ’s sacrifice on the cross. It’s like saying, “I appreciate everything you’ve done for me; however, I don’t care because I know what I wanted.” Sin is a feature of human nature after redemption, but continuous sin is harmful and fatal because it undermines the salvation the only Son, Jesus Christ, sacrificed for us.

2. We May Deceive Ourselves Into Believing We’re Alright With Ourselves Alone

If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.

— 1 John 1:8

As humans, we may detach ourselves from God’s will[1] to the point that we can persuade ourselves that we are innocent and clean. If we continue to choose to sin, we learn to believe that our transgressions aren’t that terrible and that we do not need Jesus’ atoning blood to be justified before our holy God. It is a falsehood from Satan that is incompatible with the gospel’s message.

3. Sinful Conduct Is Disobeying The Guidance Of The Holy Spirit

So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him, it is a sin.

— James 4:17

According to conventional wisdom, we should follow our conscience. This is of particular importance to the Holy Spirit. When we feel that doing anything (or otherwise) is wicked based on the Holy Spirit’s directive, we are disregarding the Lord’s will, and the act becomes sinful as a result. This is against God’s law.

4. God Will Turn His Back On Us If We Turn Away From Him

Then they will cry to the LORD, but He will not answer them; He will hide His face from them at that time because they have made their deeds evil.

— Micah 3:4

Do you consider yourself a Christian, yet you still have some unconfessed sin in your life? Trying to find God but not getting a response? It’s possible that a bad habit or desire has taken root in your heart, and if you don’t get rid of it, it might prohibit you from having communion with God. In order to return to God, you must completely give up your sins and turn from them.

5. Death Is The Payment Of Sin

But his own desire lures and entices each person into temptation. Then desire, when it has conceived, gives birth to sin, and sin, when it is fully grown, brings forth death.

— James 1:14–15

The act of being tempted is not wrong in and of itself; it is the act of giving in to temptation. Death through everlasting separation from the Father will be the final result of man’s sin.

6. Sin Will Eventually Result In Separation From God’s Grace For All Of Eternity

And if anyone’s name was not found written in the Book of Life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.

— Revelation 20:15

When God finishes creating the new heavens and new earth, those who stubbornly hold on to their very sinful nature rather than accepting the atonement that Christ has made on their behalf will be sent into hell and given a second chance to die. A person’s eternal separation from God is a real prospect, and once this happens, there is no way for it to be fixed or undone in any way.

jesus reaching out to a person and sin separates us from god

Does Sin Actually Separate Us From God?

For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

— Romans 8:38–39

Christ died for our sins, and Christians who have embraced him as Lord and Savior are no longer separated from God by their sin. Sin, however, causes spiritual and relational separation between unbelievers and God. For this reason, people must trust in Jesus and his righteousness.

The idea that it is sin that separates us from the Father may be found in the Old Testament, most prominently and often in Isaiah 59:2: “But your iniquities have separated you from your God, and your sins have hidden His face from you so that He will not hear.”

Where in the New Testament does it state that our sin separates humans from God? None. With his mercy and forgiveness, the New Covenant states the contrary. Ephesians 2:12–13 states, “You were without Christ at that time, not included in Israel’s citizenship and alien to the covenants of promise, devoid of hope, and without God in the world. However, you, who were once distant, have now come close by Christ’s blood in Christ Jesus.”

10 Revealing Bible Verses On How Sin Separates Us From God

But your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden his face from you so that he does not hear.

— Isaiah 59:2

All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.

— Romans 3:23

The wages of sin are death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus, our Lord.

— Romans 6:23

No one born of God makes a practice of sinning, for God’s seed abides in him, and he cannot keep on sinning because he has been born of God.

— 1 John 3:9

For our sake, he made him sin, who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

— 2 Corinthians 5:21

All we, like sheep, have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way, and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.

— Isaiah 53:6

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all the ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who, by their unrighteousness, suppress the truth. What can be known about God is plain to them because God has shown it to them.

His invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived ever since the creation of the world in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him; they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools.

— Romans 1:18–2

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

— 1 John 1:9

If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.

— 1 John 1:8

Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; sin is lawlessness.

— 1 John 3:4

The Role Of Repentance In Restoring Our Relationship With God

Repentance helps fix the human-God relationship by closing the sin-created gap. The concept of repentance is intricately linked to the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, the only Son of God. Through his sacrifice, Jesus offers a way for sin to be overcome and the separation between humanity and God to be bridged.

When we recognize that our sins have caused a rift in our relationship with God, we are prompted to turn to him in repentance. This acknowledgement of our wrongdoing and sincere desire to turn away from sin is essential for seeking reconciliation with God. The act of repentance demonstrates our understanding of the question, “How does sin separate us from God?” and our longing to be in alignment with his will.

God, in his boundless love and mercy, eagerly awaits our return. As we turn to him with repentant hearts, we are met with open arms. Jesus, who gave his life as a sacrifice for our sins, serves as the mediator between us and God, enabling us to find forgiveness and restoration through the Holy Spirit. Through faith in Jesus, we can experience the transformative power of repentance and receive the gift of eternal life.

The Bible provides numerous examples of individuals who turned to God in repentance, experiencing a profound change in their lives. The story of the prodigal son in Luke 15:11–32 illustrates the father’s eagerness to welcome his wayward child back into his embrace. Similarly, the woman caught in adultery, as depicted in John 8:1–11, encountered Jesus’ forgiveness and was offered a new beginning.

Repentance is not a one-time event but an ongoing process in the life of a believer. It involves a sincere examination of our lives, a turning away from sin, and a commitment to living in obedience to God’s commands. As we persistently ask for his forgiveness and aim for righteousness, the gap that sin creates lessens gradually, bringing us closer to God.

Through repentance, we find the answer to our deepest longings and the assurance of God’s grace. It is through his mercy and the cleansing power of the blood of Jesus that we are able to find restoration and renewed fellowship with God despite our sinful nature. This reconciliation brings about a profound transformation, enabling us to live a life that reflects God’s love and truth in the world around us.

Repentance plays a vital role in restoring the relationship between humanity and God, as it bridges the separation caused by sin. It acknowledges the devastating effects of sin and the need for reconciliation. Through Jesus’ sacrifice, we find forgiveness, salvation, and the opportunity for a renewed life in God’s presence.

jesus standing on a bridge and sin separates us from god

Final Thoughts

The purpose of the notion of doing good works to eradicate sin is to inculcate a fear of sin in people, and grace is left at the door. It is designed to encourage people to strive toward righteousness by doing better. This is what the false gospel is all about. This is why the sacrifice of Jesus is vital.

There would be no possibility for us to come into fellowship and everlasting life with the Creator if he had not provided a method for humanity to be reconciled to God through the forgiveness of sins. Jesus has already cleansed us. He has already separated us from our sin (Romans 6:6–7) and no longer remembers it (Hebrews 10:16–17).

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Sin Separate Us From God?

Yes, sin does separate us from God by disregarding Christ’s sacrifice, leading to spiritual and relational separation, especially for those who do not trust in Jesus and His righteousness.

What Does The Bible Say About How Sin Separates Us From God?

The Bible explains that sin separates us from God through various passages, indicating that our iniquities have caused a separation between us and God, leading to spiritual death and potentially eternal separation from God’s grace.

Didn’t Jesus Die For Our Sins?

Yes, Jesus died for our sins to offer forgiveness and salvation, ensuring that believers are not eternally separated from God by their sins, but continuous sinning can harm one’s relationship with God.

Why Do We Still Sin If We Are Christians?

Christians still sin because sinfulness is innate in the human race, and even after accepting Christ, we may sin both knowingly and unknowingly due to our human nature and the challenges of living in a fallen world.

How Can We Restore Our Relationship With God If Sin Separates Us?

We can restore our relationship with God if sin separates us by acknowledging our sins, repenting, and seeking God’s forgiveness through faith in Jesus Christ, as He provides the way for reconciliation and a renewed relationship with God.

What Role Does Repentance Play In Our Relationship With God?

Repentance plays a crucial role in our relationship with God as it involves turning away from sin, acknowledging the need for God’s mercy, and seeking forgiveness, which bridges the separation caused by sin and restores our fellowship with God.

Can Anything Separate Us From The Love Of God In Christ Jesus?

According to Romans 8:38–39, neither death, life, angels, rulers, nor anything else in all creation can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus, highlighting the secure bond of love for those in Christ.

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