Do You Know What Sin Is?

Did You Know That Mankind Was Created Without Sin?


Sin – lawlessness (1 John 3:4) or transgression of God’s will, either by omitting to do what God’s law requires or by doing what it forbids. The transgression can occur in:



Mankind was created without sin, morally upright and inclined to do good (Eccl. 7:29). But sin entered into human experience when Adam and Eve violated the direct command of God by eating the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:6).




Because Adam was the head and representative of the whole human race, his sin affected all future generations (Romans 5:12-21). Associated with this guilt is a fallen nature passed from Adam to all his descendants. Out of this fallen nature, twisted from the original order of God’s benevolent intent, arise all the sins that people commit (Matthew 15:19);


No person is free from involvement in sin (Romans 3:23).


Sin is not represented in the Bible as the absence of good, or as an illusion that stems from our human limitation. It is portrayed as a real and positive evil. Sin is more than unwise, inexpedient, calamitous behaviour that produces sorrow and distress.


It is a violation of God’s law – the universal standard of righteousness (Psalm 119:160) – occasioned by ignorance, disobedience, or rebellion.


Since God demands righteousness (right alignment with Him and His laws), sin must be defined in terms of mankind’s relation to God. Sin is thus the breaking of the creature from the just authority and loving intent of his Creator. Any break shatters the symmetry of the whole relation; thus breaking God’s law at any point of His law (James 2:10).


Ongoing violation of the law of God in thought, word and deed shows the sinfulness of the human heart, and sin is capable of compounding its evil even unto the most depraved actions conceivable. Because sin is actually a contradiction to the holiness of God, whose image mankind bears, even the least severe actions of sin are subject to judgment, because they evidence the original sin’s ruination of the divine order.


Mankind sins by choice, but also is sinful by birth. Apart from Jesus Christ, all are “dead in trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1).


This does not mean that humans behave as wickedly as they might, for God’s prevenient grace often restrains the outworking’s of the sinful heart. At times He even helps sinners to do things that conform to the law (Genesis 20:6).


Thus, the corrupting influence of sin is not developed or expressed to the same degree in every person. Neither is it expressed in the same way in any person at all times.


Sin involves the denial of the living God from whom human beings draw their lift and existence (Acts 17:28); the consequence of this revolt is death and the torment of hell. Death is the ultimate penalty imposed by God for sin (Romans 6:23).


Against this dark background of sin and its reality, the gospel comes as the Good News of the deliverance that God has provided through His Son. Jesus bears the penalty of sin in place of His people (Mark 10:45). He also redeems us from lawlessness and begets and inner desire and ability for good works in service to God and others (Romans 8:1-16; Titus 2:14).



The Hayford Bible Handbook



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