What is Sin?
Everyone has a preconceived idea of what sin is. And what one person says that it is, another will deny it. One person will say that drinking is a sin and someone else will say that it is not. And most often when someone says that a certain thing is not a sin, you will find that they are engaged in that sin. They like their sin more than they love God so people will tend to find teachers who will teach what they want to hear. They like to have their conscience soothed. We truly live in the day that 2 Timothy 4:3 is referring to. “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;” It is bad enough that in their own lust that they heap to themselves false teachers and will not endure sound doctrine, but then they try to get others to join them.
Listening to all the different teachings out there will just get you confused. I thank God that we do not have to listen to opinions. To know what sin is all we have to do is look and see what God says that it is.
1) Sin is transgression against the law.
1Jo 3:4 Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.
The law is more than the Ten Commandments. The Law is referring to all the laws and commandments that God gave Moses to give to the people. That is why it is also called the Law of Moses. One example of this is 1Co 9:9 “For it is written in the Law of Moses, Thou shalt not muzzle the mouth of the ox that treadeth out the corn.” This law actually contains hundreds of laws.
And Man cannot keep the law.
Jam 2:10 For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one [point], he is guilty of all.
The law is too vast for a man to keep it all, and if he offends in just one thing in the law then the Bible says that he is guilty of all. Lets look at just one point of the law. The law says that “Thou shalt not bear false witness” or in other words you are not to tell a lie. Everyone has told some kind of lie during his or her lifetime. It might be something small. It might be a little white lie or some exaggeration. You might have even stretched the truth just a little to help cheer someone up. Anything that is not 100 truth is a lie. Man cannot keep the law. That is why the Bible says in Romans 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God. That is why we have to turn to Jesus. Rom 3:24 Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:
2) Sin is of the devil.
1Jo 3:8 He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil.
Joh 8:44 Ye are of [your] father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.
Sin is of the devil. It started with him. You can read of the devils fall into sin in Isa 14:12 How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! [how] art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!
Isa 14:13 For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: Isa 14:14 I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High. Isa 14:15 Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit. After the devil fell into sin he went and temped Eve. Sin loves company. And notice how many times he said I will. Sin is basically anything that is an “I will” instead of God’s will.
3) Anything unrighteous is sin.
1Jo 5:17 All unrighteousness is sin: and there is a sin not unto death.
Some people want to have an all-inclusive list for what are sins. Creating this list would be impossible for it is anything that is unrighteous. The list would be so long that you could not read it all, and if you could read it all you could not remember everything in the list.
4) Not only are sins things that you do, but sins can be things that you do not do.
So far all of the verses on sin that we have looked at are sins of commission. That is things that you have done. But that is not the only kind of sin. There are also sins of omission.
Jam 4:17 Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth [it] not, to him it is sin. If you know that God says to not forsake the assembling of yourselves together, and you do not go to church, then it is a sin. If you know that God says to tithe and you do not, then it is a sin. If you know that God says to love thy neighbor and you do not, then it is a sin. God says to witness, help the fatherless, widows, poor, and the list goes on. We are all guilty of the sin of not always doing the good that we know to do.
5) A lack of faith is sin.
Rom 14:23 And he that doubteth is damned if he eat, because [he eateth] not of faith: for whatsoever [is] not of faith is sin. This is another sin that we are all guilty of. Whatsoever is not of faith is sin. Sometimes it is our finances, sometimes it is our witnessing, and sometimes it is just not having enough faith to trust God with the trial that we are going thru.
6) Foolish thoughts are sin.
Pro 24:9 The thought of foolishness [is] sin: and the scorner [is] an abomination to men. Having a foolish thought is sin even if we do not act on it. A good example of this is Mat 5:28 But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart. If a man looks at another woman, even for a moment, that thought is still a sin. Even if he never touches her.
7) Our imaginations can be sin.
Gen 6:5 And GOD saw that the wickedness of man [was] great in the earth, and [that] every imagination of the thoughts of his heart [was] only evil continually.
Gen 8:21 And the LORD smelled a sweet savour; and the LORD said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man’s sake; for the imagination of man’s heart [is] evil from his youth; neither will I again smite any more every thing living, as I have done.
Truly all people have sin. The Bible clearly teaches that sin is not just the things that people do to get thrown in jail. Sin is more than hurting someone else. A simple definition of sin would be anything that is against the will of God. Both the things that we do that are against the will of God and the things that we don’t do that He wants us to.
That leaves us with what to do about it. Well first if you are not saved then pray to God and admit to Him that you are a sinner and ask Him to save you. Rom 10:13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. Then after you are saved and you mess up in some area, then confess it to God and ask for forgiveness. After you are saved, you can never lose your salvation, but you can suffer in your relationship with Jesus and your walk with Him. 1Jo 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us [our] sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
Sin is a serious problem and we need to take it seriously.