The only sin that sends people to hell is the sin of rejecting Jesus. “When [the Holy Spirit] comes, He will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment: in regard to sin, because men do not believe in Me” (John 16:8-9). Over the years, many theologians have debated about “the unpardonable sin.” What is this horrible sin that automatically sends people to hell? Is it murder?
No, God can forgive the murderer. Is it homosexuality? No, God is willing to forgive the homosexual. In reality, the only sin that has the power to send someone to hell is the sin of not believing in Jesus. Since it is the Holy Spirit who draws us to Jesus, the sin of blaspheming the Holy Spirit (Mark 3:29) is the sin of denying the Spirit’s invitation to receive Jesus.
At the Judgment Seat, God will ask unbelievers only one question, “Did you make Jesus the Lord of your life?” We are not sinners because we sin; we are sinners because Adam sinned. We are not made righteous because we do righteous deeds; we are made righteous because Jesus is righteous. Under the Law, if you do one thing wrong, you are guilty of breaking the whole Law. Under grace, if you do one thing right, by making Jesus the Lord of your life, you will be made righteous in every area. Nothing you do can earn salvation. The reverse is also true, nothing you do can cause you to lose your salvation (except the sin of turning away from trusting in Jesus for your salvation).
The grace of God is not some abstract concept, not some dusty word on the pages of scripture. Amazing grace is no less than the Son of God Himself, Jesus Christ. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Draw near to Jesus, and grace will draw near to you.
The Old Testament prophet, Isaiah, foretelling the coming of Christ, wrote this: “’Comfort, yes, comfort My people!’ says your God. Speak comfort to Jerusalem, and cry out to her, that her warfare is ended, that her iniquity is pardoned…” (Isaiah 40:1-2). Because of Christ, your warfare is ended! Because of Jesus, your iniquity is pardoned! You were an enemy of God, but by grace you have been saved, and in Christ you are one of God’s people.