Last night, I was lying in bed contemplating all the regular stuff-you know, reflecting on how my day went, if I would have done anything differently, the meaning of life, all the light stuff. I got to thinking about the absurdity of sin. Sin, as defined by a humanly act that is displeasing to God, causes separation from God. If God is life, then to separate from God is to go in the opposite direction of life, which is death.
We knowingly condemn ourselves to death.
Every single time we lie, we die.
Imagine you are a defendant in a murder trial. You have all the evidence stacked against you, and even worse, you really did kill someone, and aren't even remorseful! The judge, being a good and fair judge, condemns you to death for death. It's easy to pick a more extreme case and say, "Well I'm not that bad; I've never killed someone." But you have certainly told a lie, and the hard part to wrap our infinitesimal brains around is that the act of lying is essentially the same as murder. Both are displeasing to God. If God is our judge, He has every right to try us every time we lie, and even more right to condemn us to death.
But as C.S. Lewis writes in his excellent The Great Divorce, it is we who do the condemning, not God. It is we who gleefully smirk at the seeming joy of doing that which our Lord finds vile. And He heartbreakingly allows us to do what we like.
When we understand free will (not that I'm saying I fully do, and probably won't ever), we can better understand and gain scope of the price it costs to save us, to save me. In every single courtroom trial, your defense lawyer insists on taking the sentence. And every time we lie, hate, steal, lust, kill, we are brought to another trial in which our D.A. agrees to serving another life sentence for our actions.