Sins Two-by-Two are Payed for One-by-One! 

When I was a teenager, I had a Sunday School teacher named “Buddy.” Jesus Christ was his personal Savior and Lord, which he reflected onto others through his teaching and personal presence. Buddy was someone I deeply admired who consistently spoke wisdom he developed from the Bible. The teaching he provided was essential for my Christian growth. There were several occasions when I was no longer his student, and I asked if we could meet and talk about a concern I had, and he was always available. He was a kind man who spoke with great insight, and the love in his heart was very apparent!   

“Buddy” had several very insightful sayings, and there is one I remember till this day: “the sins you commit two-by-two, you pay for one-by-one.” The essence of this truth taught that many wrongs committed in haste would have long-suffering consequences that may take years to resolve! That makes me think of another truth: “you pay for the time you play!” Actions carried out at the moment with poor judgment may result in painful and long-suffering consequences for the initiator: loss of relationships and reputation, financial difficulties, occupational concerns, and legal consequences.   

I have known people over the years who have demonstrated poor judgment repeatedly. Some people come to mind where their poor decisions resulted in irreparable harm, problems, and difficulties throughout their life. One person I knew developed an addictive passion for alcohol, leading to years of misuse and devastating problems. 

Knowing this person over multiple years made me wonder what could happen next. Eventually, circumstances worsened when the person received their second DUI, marital separation with plans for divorce and death of a close friend (all within 30 days). 

Where can we turn for guidance when seeking the correct path that reflects the wisdom we need to make good decisions? Let’s see what the Bible says:

  • “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” (Proverbs 3:5-6/NIV).   
  • “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” (James 1:5/NIV).  
  • “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” (Romans 12:2/NIV). 

There are so many Bible verses to be considered which help us gain insight and develop wisdom, which would influence appropriate actions. Perhaps using these Bible verses could minimize the risk of making poor decisions and “paying for the time we play”! Living a godly life and making good decisions will negate the risk of hastily sinning (“two-by-two”) and not having to pay the penalty continually (“one-by-one”)! 

Many blessings to you!   


Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture is taken from the New American Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.


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