“I’m only human.” That’s what people say to excuse repeated bad behavior. Can Christians use this excuse? They shouldn’t. Paul used a very similar phrase to rebuke the Corinthian church over divisions among them. Here’s the section.
You are still worldly. For since there is jealousy and quarreling among you, are you not worldly? Are you not acting like mere humans? For when one says, “I follow Paul,” and another, “I follow Apollos,” are you not mere human beings? (1 Corinthians 3:3-4 NIV)
Do you get the implication here? Implicit to an identification with Christ is the transcendence of cultural norms. We are no longer mere humans. We’re something more. What are we?
Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature, having escaped the corruption in the world caused by evil desires. (2 Peter 1:4 NIV)
We’re hybrids, implanted with divine DNA. We’re aliens. We’re morally supercharged creatures of God. Our nature has become intertwined with his. How could we ever claim to be ONLY human?
How could we use what to Paul would have been an insult as an excuse? Imagine a man who threw a tantrum excusing his behavior on the grounds that he is childish. Not only would he be rejecting personal responsibility for his behavior he would also be implicitly pledging to retain his faults. With Christians who hide behind their humanity, the error is even more serious because it is God who has declared us to be more, based on the work of Jesus Christ and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. When we assert that we are only human we insult not only ourselves but God. Christians often behave like people of the world but when we appeal to our humanity to cover our culpability it’s not just a fallacy; it’s heresy.