I could list a whole catalog of sins that believing Christians practice, but none of them would come near to the sin that I want to talk about. The mother of all sins—the one that gives birth to all others—is the sin of unbelief!
I am not speaking of the unbelief of a hardened sinner. The unbelief of reprobates, agnostics and atheists does not move God at all. No, what angers God more than anything else is the unbelief and troubling doubts of those who call themselves by His name! His children who say, “I am of Jesus,” and yet hold doubt, fear and unbelief in their hearts grieve Him more than all others!
How seriously does God take this sin of unbelief! Jude warned the church with these words: “But I want to remind you, though you once knew this, that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe” (Jude 5).
Jude is reminding believers of God’s attitude toward unbelief! He is saying, “I am bringing to your remembrance God’s utter hatred for unbelief among His saved people. Having saved the people, afterward He destroyed the ones who did not believe!”
Beloved, I believe that God has called me to put His church in remembrance of this same thing! “Now all these things happened to them as examples, and they were written for our admonition, on whom the ends of the ages have come” (1 Corinthians 10:11). God may no longer destroy His people physically as He did in the Old Testament but His judgments on our unbelief today are spiritual and they are just as severe.
Unbelief is just as destructive today as it ever was. We may not turn into a pillar of salt, but we do become stiff-necked and bitter! The ground does not open up to swallow us but we are swallowed by troubles, stress and family problems. Fire does not come down and consume us but our spiritual life is destroyed.
Many of us are guilty of the mother of all sins and we do not fear it. We do not take our unbelief seriously; in fact, we live as though God winks at it. And yet it is the one sin that opens our body and spirit to every other sin known to man.