When we willfully disobey God’s commandments, we commit sin. We also commit sin when we fail to act righteously despite our knowledge of the truth (see James 4:17).
The Lord has said that He “cannot look upon sin with the least degree of allowance” (D&C 1:31). The result of sin is the withdrawal of the Holy Ghost and, in eternity, being unable to dwell in the presence of our Heavenly Father, for “no unclean thing can dwell with God” (1 Nephi 10:21).
Each of us has broken commandments or failed to act according to our knowledge of the truth. The Apostle John taught: “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, [Jesus Christ] is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:8–9). Through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, we can repent and be forgiven of our sins.