[quote=Paris Blues]It is my understanding that if one commits a mortal sin, then their relationship with God is completely cut off, right?
The nature of mortal sin is that it deprives us of Sanctifying Grace. Without that grace, our spiritual nature (given us at baptism) is dead. When is the state of “spiritual death”, there is no spiritual merit gained from anything we do, pray, or say. (That does not mean that we cannot do good things, it just means that we get no spiritual benefit from those good things, just like a non-believer who does good things) Since it is through our spirit that we have true relationship with God, that relationship is “dead” when our spirit is “dead”.
Only sacramental reconciliation restores sanctifying Grace – LIFE – to our soul.
[quote=Paris Blues]They have to will and intend to do the sin for it to be mortal and of course, meet the three conditions like it says in the CCC. Right?
Absolutely. And although the criteria for sin to be mortal is set in stone, the application is a bit grey, in my opinion.
- Grave matter – What is sufficiently grave for it to be mortal sin? The Church guides us on some things (skipping Mass, for instance), but how severe must greed be (a “deadly” sin) before it is mortal? Only God truly knows.
- Full knowledge – You must KNOW it is gravely sinful. Does it count if someone just tells you “such and such is a mortal sin”? Or must you truly believe that what you are about to do will sever your relationship with God? I know plenty of people who have skipped a holy day Mass for no good reason, not truly believing that it severs their relationship with God. Are they acting in full knowledge?
- Deliberate consent – You must actively choose of your own free will. Seems clear. But how much coersion does it take before deliberate consent is no longer present? If I feel threatened to do something that is gravely sinful, and I know it but do it out of fear, am I in full consent? Psychological coersion can be very powerful, and it can, essentially, make someone choose evil. Is that deliberate consent?
So, you can see where this leaves room for interpretation, in my opinion.
I believe now that in order for a sin to be mortal, someone must freely choose to do something evil with the intent of ending their relationship with God. You have to know something is serious, know that it will end your relationship with God, and yet do it anyways.
So, to keep it simple, I think that unless you did something that you intended to do in order to end your relationship with God, you didn’t commit a mortal sin.
What do you think?