Resisting Temptation & Culpability

It is my understanding that for a mortal sin to have occurred, an action is required, i.e. it is not enough for the person to have been sorely tempted to the point of desiring the particular sinful end, but he would have actually had to have gone through with some action to bring the sin to fruition.

I often battle with extremely painful temptations to serious mortal sins and even when I (only with the help and grace of Our Lord) “win” a particular battle I am left… not feeling triumphant but more dazed and sorrowful at my own capacity to desire such an evil thing,.

In my mind I liken it to what it must feel like after soldiers win a battle but at a great cost… where they don’t feel like jumping up and down but perhaps grimly get on with their business preparing for the next fight.

I am profoundly disturbed by my own concupiscence, I am very curious to know how events are viewed in the Kingdom of Heaven when a sinner manages to fight off temptation in a particular instance. It’s not like our wins can ever make up for the times we did indeed fall (at least in my case as a first rate sinner) we need to rely on the sacrifice of Jesus for that.

Even when I manage to resist, I feel so horrible with the knowledge of how BADLY I wanted that sinful end in the first place. I feel personally responsible for scourging Our Lord with my evil thoughts and will, I wonder where the line between temptation and action falls as far as culpability.

The culpability can be reduced due to an *acquired *habit of sin, originally arising through a series of mortal or venial sins, and lack of wisdom to avoid near occassions.

So we are not culpable for the desires which we have that are not cultivated. Taking preparatory steps to sin, is also sin, just as not avoiding the near occasions of sin (people, places, things) is sinful. We can say that those are cultivated.

The actions result from desired and thoughts* unchecked*. For example envy leads to theft, lying, vengeance or even murder, jealousy leads to lying, adultery, vengeance or even murder. Lustful thoughts lead to unchaste physical acts and other sins to fulfill them.

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