Wise words from the philosopher, Socrates: “How can you call a man free when his pleasures rule over him?” Not to be led by their passions and addictions, humans need ascesis. Christians, in particular, are asked to follow the way of Jesus, who says: “If any want to be my followers let them deny themselves, take up their cross daily and follow me”.
What is cooperation in evil? Cooperation in evil is concurrence in another’s sinful act. Cooperation in evil is different from scandal.
Pride can make a man scrupulous over minute things while neglecting more important matters. Name any sin and you will find pride in it.
To sin against the Holy Spirit is to voluntarily close one’s heart and make it impermeable to the action of grace.
Saint Augustine wrote: “While he is in the flesh, man cannot but have at least some light sins. But do not despise these sins which we call ‘light’: if you take them for light when you weigh them, tremble when you count them. A number of light objects makes a great mass; a number of drops fills a river; a number of grains makes a heap. What then is our hope? Above all, confession (In epist. Io. 1, 6).”
Mortal sin is like deliberate solitary confinement. If death comes and one has not repented, his heart is forever sealed – he will have excluded himself from enjoying infinite truth, goodness, beauty, life, and happiness.
Saint John, in his First Letter (1:8-10) says: “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just, and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.”
Sin is bad company. It is opposed to what we all want in life: happiness, which is made up of love, compassion, peace and joy – and continuing prayer! The greatest thing: God is infinitely merciful and always ready to open the door of forgiveness. Sin is forgiven by the mercy of God through Christ. By acknowledging and confessing our sins with repentance, we are on the way home, on the way – like the Prodigal Son – to the embrace of our Father.