In one of the most interesting verses in the Christian bible there is a scripture that has to do with the challenges we face as humans when our desire to do good are outweighed by our desire to sin.
14 We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin. 15 I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. 16 And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 17 As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 18 For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature.[c] For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 19 For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. 20 Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it.
This verse has always been intriguing to me for several reasons, leaving me with several questions. One, is Paul excusing his behavior, present and future? Because he admonishes himself by saying he “hates” what he is doing is he saying he can’t control what he does? Or by saying he has the desire to do what is good but cannot carry it out is he simply admitting his weakness? I happen to think Paul is giving us a message that tells us that even though we do sinful things, things that we do not want to do, God with his incredible mercy still forgives us because he understands that our heart is good even when our actions are not.