by Srila Bhaktisiddhanta Saraswati Thakur Prabhupada
Question: Are sin and offense the same?
Answer: No. One commits sin by disobeying the rules of society, but one commits offense by showing disrespect to the lotus feet of Vishnu and vaisnava. Offense is a million times more dangerous than sin. Sin can be destroyed by atonement, but offense cannot be destroyed that way. Only by taking the all-beneficial names of Sri Sri Gaura-Nityananda, the friends of the fallen, can one make offense go away.