Are all mortal sins equally bad?

I’ve looked a bit into the homosexuality controversy based on a Christian YouTuber getting nasty comments on her video on homosexuality, which would eventually drive her off the internet. Many of the people whi were doing this defended themselves by citing places where she said that daying that homosexuality is wrong is the same as saying that murder is wrong. Which makes me wonder, does the Church teach that any one mortal sin could be worse than another? Would it be orthodox to say that muder is worse than thievery, or adultery, or rape?

No, not all mortal sins are equally bad. For instance, adultery is worse than fornication, since [one] of the parties can lawfully use marriage to ease concupiscence. Murder is evil; murdering a priest saying Mass is worse, since this would be sacrilege as well.

I hope this was helpful,
Benedicat Deus,

Not really. They’re the “same” in that committing one will cause you to lose sanctifying grace. So they all have that effect, but that doesn’t mean that one still can’t be morally worse than another.

Is there really, “the lesser of 2 evils?” Evil is evil and mortal sin is mortal sin. So lying and adultery should be treated different, yet they are part of the 10 commandments?

All mortal sins are bad, every sin still creates a separation between you and GOD. That’s how I see it. If you think 1 is lesser than the other then you are more likely to commit it. Don’t do it.

I think there are two issues involved…the internal and external.

Internally - or the harm to one’s soul - all mortal sins are equally bad.

Externally - or in how the sin effects others - there can certainly be degrees depending on the harm done to others.


I was always under the impression that they were equally bad and all had the same punishment, eternal damnation.
Now that I am older it seems a little harsh to put Missing a Sunday Mass on the same level as adultery.

SO okay, is thinking of having sex with someone other than you spouse different from actually having sex with someone other then your spouse? In scripture it says if you think of it you have already committed it. Not my words but the word of GOD.

But I know what you mean, but who decides what is worse, God or us?:shrug:

yes, thinking all the sins are equally bad like there is no diference between mortal and venial, is a pretty bad thing to do, all sin is evil and we want to avoid every sin, but consider that we are going to Hell because we said a little lie is going into scrupulosity.

Yeah, I’m with you. I just can’t believe thinking something is as bad as doing something. I know what I was taught but it just doesn’t make since to me now. :shrug:

Consider this, if you lie once then there is a pretty good chance that you will do it again, because you feel that a little white lie will not hurt anyone. But is that true?:shrug:

There is no way for us to stop sinning, except God grants us some grace that I’m not sure any other mortal besides Virgin Mary and Jesus had. if we consider every venial as mortal we are in a big problem. I am not trying to be indulgent in sin, i just say we give it the importance it has, no more or no less.

I was taught that all sin is equal in the eyes of God. Men do not witness the totality of how sin can ripple through the realms. Instead, we view sin as snowballing out of control, and therefore perceive murder greater than stealing a pen. What we fail to understand is that he person who committed murder typically has habitually taken steps to justify the action is alright, despite Gods boundaries. They may have started with smashing a bug, then hurting a pet, hitting & bullying, until they had so much practice that murder had the same stimulas as with the original bug. Meanwhile, the person who stole the pen (knowing it was against Gods boundaries) may be practicing their way to be Bernie Madoff.

Now the OP also tied in homosexuality into the tread. It’s the same principal. A desire can occurs, and a small step is practiced (knowing it’s against Gods boundaries). Then bunches of more steps follow with an unrepentive heart, and pride in doing wrong against Gods will leading to same sex acts and may further lead to grooming other young innocents to do the same acts against God.

Same with fornication. Many small grooming steps happened to lead to fornication. Should the person fail to repent and seek Gods will, more sins like abortion may follow … Again, many with pride and no contrition for all the steps it took to lead to abortion.

The sacrament of Reconcilliation does two things: washes sin away and gives us divine grace to avoid future sin. I often ponder why Mother Teresa of Calcutta and St. John Paul II went to confession daily, but was told its because all sin is equal and what we fail to do weakens us to open us to more acts against God. Personally, I hope to be walking towards God and not away from Him. I am thankful for confession.

I look at it this way:

Suppose I was approached by a man who announced that he was going to kill me, and gave me the following different ways that he COULD do so.

#1: Rape and then stabbing to the heart.
#2. Gunshot wound to the stomach (‘gut shot’) and left to die.
#3. Guillotine.
#4. Being buried alive.
#5. Given fast acting poison.
#6. Hanging.
#7. Drowning.
#8. Freezing to death.

Some of these are extremely painful, like #1 and #2, but 1 would be quicker than 2.
Some are considered almost ‘painless’, like guillotine or poison. Some are very long (buried alive). . .

Thing is, every one of them results in the same thing --death.

The external mechanism is the only difference, and whether it is fast or slow, painful or not, it still ends up with death.

So a mortal sin might LOOK or FEEL as though it is ‘less important’ than another mortal sin, but the end result is death.

God doesn’t look at a person in UNREPENTED mortal sin and say,

"OK, I have 5 people here who died of unrepented mortal sin. One killed an old lady for ‘kicks’, one raped three young boys, one cheated on his wife for 15 years, one deliberately helped a friend get an abortion, and one missed Mass deliberately dozens of times in his life because he was too busy having fun on Saturday to go to the vigil mass, and he was too ‘tired’ to get up and go on Sunday, and no body was going to ‘force’ him to do differently, not even God.

Most people would say that the first two at least were FAR worse sinners than the last one. And the ‘cheater’ they might try to justify by saying that his wife ‘let herself go’, or she wasn’t ‘enough’, and after all, the guy was entitled to ‘real love’, right? And gee, with the abortion, the person (they will argue) was trying to help the woman. Abortion was legal, right? It was better for the baby not to be born. . .it is more LOVING than letting it grow up unwanted, in poverty, blah blah.

And geez Louise, why is missing Sunday Mass such a big deal to God? It’s so ‘little’. It’s so unfair. Imagine equating this person with a murderer, they’ll say . . .

But each of the mortal sins above (unrepented) is equally hateful, hurtful, and deadly. One is not ‘better’ than the others.

Sins are unequal. Jesus Himself told Pilate that the one who had betrayed Him “is guilty of the **greater **sin.” (Emphasis mine.)

Also, four sins are set aside as “crying out to heaven for vengeance” (murder, sodomy, oppressing the poor, and defrauding workers of their just wages), so they are ostensibly worse than the others.

And yes, the teaching is that any stain of mortal sin on one’s soul prevents one from being in a state of grace, and if one dies not in a state of grace, then it’s H-E-double-toothpicks.

That means the hypothetical person who misses Mass **once **for no good reason has committed a mortal sin, and is in as graceless a state as a hypothetical mass-murdering serial rapist.

That also means that in either case, the sin can be washed away by a good confession with true contrition: there is no sin, or aggregation of sins, of such enormity that it cannot be washed away with the sacrifice of Jesus.

The difference will probably come in as to the amount of time one might have to spend in Purgatory.

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