Any Person is Capable of Any Sin

broken heartI’ve long-held that any person is capable of any sin.  I don’t suppose that this is an original thought on my part, because Justin Martyr said that “Every created being is so constituted as to be capable of vice and virtue.”  Jeremiah, a Prophet in the Old Testament said, “The human heart is the most deceitful of all things, and desperately wicked. Who really knows how bad it is?” Jeremiah 17:9

Jesus said, “For from within, out of men’s hearts, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. Mark 7:21,22

In light of today’s events and comments like “I don’t understand how any one person can be so evil,” or “I don’t understand how any person can do something so horrendous,” I’m convinced that for the most part, humanity has not embraced its own depravity.  Ultimately, this problem can not be pinned to pistols, poverty, or politics or any other secondary causality.  It’s a heart issue.  It’s sin.

When I first read today’s news, I wept.  It broke my heart.  Not because I don’t understand, but because I understand all too well.  Having seen up close the consequences on a loved one from the death of a child, I simply could not bear the thought of that multiplied by 20+.  I won’t say that I don’t understand how any person can do such a horrendous thing because Like I said in the opening, I believe any person is capable of any sin.  

Am I wrong?  

Please don’t mistake me for a cynic or a prophet of doom.  To the same degree that I believe any person is capable of any sin, I equally believe that the Gospel is the solution.  We can attempt to control people’s behavior with some short-term and limited success, but only the continually proclaimed gospel gets to the heart issue.  

For related posts, see:


Is Jeremiah 17:9 for Believers?



0 thoughts on “Any Person is Capable of Any Sin

  1. Marshall says:

    as did Jesus, we know what the mind/thoughts of man are capable. (Of course, not all men have like physical and/or cognitive reach & inefficiencies.)
    but, consider this..

    “We know that no one who is born of God sins; but He who was born of God is keeping himself and the evil/wicked one is not touching him.”
    [I John 5:18]

    The new man, not as “capable”.

  2. Dan B. says:

    I’ve been a journalist for over 30 years and have covered lots of court cases involving some pretty ghastly criminal acts. And the thought I always have in courtrooms, especially during a sentencing, is that I’m not really that different than the criminals. There’s a very thin line between me and people who’ve done some awful things. I’m grateful to God for protecting me from myself.

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