What is sin? We hear so much about this topic in church and within secular media that it often goes without explanation. A prevailing theme emerges of a big God residing somewhere in the ether ready to clamp down the hammer if we so much as sneeze or do something that he doesn’t approve. Just like many things in life, not everything is as is seems. First, the God of the bible is not residing in the sky with a hammer waiting for you to make a mistake. The God of the bible is a God of order and decency. He lays out a framework, gives his commands to his people and provides you with a will to either choose to adhere to his commands or work against them. Whether or not you approve or disapprove of them is irrelevant. For the commands that he gives humanity are not evil, they are ultimately for our good and not to our detriment.
Sadly, the evil one has blinded the minds of a large portion of humanity and cleverly convinces people that the commands of God are issued down from a despotic dictator who wants to do them harm. This lie has convinced millions that the words of God are evil and vile. Which is completed untrue. For when you adhere to advice of the evil one, sin takes hold and ultimately destroys.
We believe that sin is not a societal construct. That it exited from the earliest stages of humanity and was introduced to men and women by an angelic who lost his position seeking to destroy and work against the plan and sovereignty of God.
The bible defines sin in two concepts: transgression and missing the mark. Sin is transgressing against the commands of God. Meaning that God’s word (commandments) are the set boundary limit imposed by him to humanity. Once you violate these set limits or boundaries, you have in effect sinned. Sin is also implied as having missed the mark. The mark is the high call of God in Christ Jesus. It is the direction or path that he has set for you to obtain everlasting life. Once you decide to willfully go against this path, in effect turn away and be led down a different path, you are in effect sinning.
One could say, that’s not fair, I am a free moral agent. I don’t believe in this idea or concept of God. I am here because of evolution or something else. Everyone is free to believe what they want. But we as human beings are unlike any other creature in life. We have to give account for what we have said and done in this life. Unlike the tree, a dog, or any other sentient being, we are made in the image of God. This is one reason why we are able to create and conceive of alternate courses of paths that supposedly lead toward life. The apostle John wrote to the first century Christians in a letter addressing this issue of sin. It reads as follows: “Everyone who sins is breaking God’s law, for all sin is contrary to the law of God. And you know that Jesus came to take away our sins, and there is no sin in him. Anyone who continues to live in him will not sin. But anyone who keeps on sinning does not know him or understand who he is (1 John 3:4-6 NLT).
The aforementioned passage informs us that all sin is contrary to the law of God. So, what is the law of God? The law of God is his desire and will for all of humanity. In particular his desire and will for those who love him and choose to obey his words. His law is expressed to us in two covenants: Old & New Testaments. The Old Testament (Torah, Psalms, Books of Wisdom, and Prophets) has been revealed to us through mighty men and women of God who were inspired by the Spirit of God. The rules and regulations for maintaining and practicing religious worship (sacrificing bulls, goats, etc.) in honor to God to cleanse us of sin have been fulfilled by Jesus Christ dying and serving as the Lamb of God. The writer of the book of Hebrews provides more information in this regard stating, “For that old system deals only with food and drink and various cleansing ceremonies—physical regulations that were in effect only until a better system could be established. So Christ has now become the High Priest over all the good things that have come. He has entered that greater, more perfect Tabernacle in heaven, which was not made by human hands and is not part of this created world. With his own blood—not the blood of goats and calves—he entered the Most Holy Place once for all time and secured our redemption forever. Under the old system, the blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer could cleanse people’s bodies from ceremonial impurity. Just think how much more the blood of Christ will purify our consciences from sinful deeds so that we can worship the living God. For by the power of the eternal Spirit, Christ offered himself to God as a perfect sacrifice for our sins. That is why he is the one who mediates a new covenant between God and people, so that all who are called can receive the eternal inheritance God has promised them. For Christ died to set them free from the penalty of the sins they had committed under that first covenant” (Hebrews 9:10-15 NLT).
So now we are under the law of Love. For the apostle Paul informs us in his letter to the Romans: “Owe nothing to anyone—except for your obligation to love one another. If you love your neighbor, you will fulfill the requirements of God’s law. For the commandments say, “You must not commit adultery. You must not murder. You must not steal. You must not covet.” These—and other such commandments—are summed up in this one commandment: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Love does no wrong to others, so love fulfills the requirements of God’s law (Romans 13:8-10 NLT).
When you take time to learn about Jesus Christ, you will receive a more complete picture about the love of God. For Jesus is the visible image of the invisible God. He is our representative to see and know about God the father. If you can ever truly develop a relationship, closeness, and a dialogue with him you will learn and have true life. He will mentor you spiritually, physically and emotionally. He will guide you away from all fear and sin and lead you to the path of true life. But it first begins with this first step. Learning about him the Word of God.