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Overview of The Bible

What Are Demons?

What is God's Spirit?

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The Resurrection

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The Names of God

The Atonement

What is Sin?

What is Heaven?

The concept of sin is now vague and foreign, because many have forgotten the very first rule that God teaches us about sin: God gets to decide what is right and what is wrong.

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Sin

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What is Sin?

Introduction

Sin is a term from the Bible established by God to differentiate good from bad. It is a term created by God and defined by God, so the Bible is the best resource to discover its meaning. The Bible's definition and perspective on sin and how God wants it to be understood is parallel to what we call "disobedience" today. For example, when children don't do what they are told, whether accidentally or intentionally, they are being disobedient or sinning.


In the first few chapters of the Bible, God created Adam and Eve, placed them in a garden, and gave them one rule to follow: they weren't allowed to eat the fruit from the "tree of the knowledge of good and evil." However, as you continue reading the story, you find that Adam and Eve disobeyed or sinned and ate fruit from the tree.


So, Adam was told not to eat of the tree — but he did, and therefore disobeyed God's rule or sinned. We have to ask why was this the first rule God made, and what's wrong with eating fruit, and by asking these questions, we notice who it was that decided what was good and what was bad: you see, if Adam and Eve had not been told to not eat from that tree, they would not have sinned by eating it. In fact, eating fruit from a tree is not, according to anyone's conscience, considered bad in and of itself! But God makes the rules. It was His job and up to His discretion to decide what was right and wrong, not up to Adam and Eve — and so God was right! God alone would be the one to define sin, make the rules, and determine good from evil.


Aren't the Bible's Laws Contradictory?

In the Bible, sins were sometimes very specific and, other times, very abstract. For example, It was a sin for the nation of Israel to collect more than one omer of manna off the ground in the wilderness unless it was the Sabbath, and it was also a sin for them to disrespect their parents. Furthermore, God commanded some people to kill, but God also forbade killing in His ten commandments, which seems quite contradictory. From our perspective, there seems to be no logic behind it: some laws are straightforward and obvious, but some are so disconnected and contradictory! Why? Well, think of it this way. To a baby, it makes no sense when their parents tell them not to take toys from their peers. But as the child grows up and develops the capability to understand the concept of selflessness, they can begin to understand other related concepts, such as giving to those who have less than they have or using their free time to help others. This is actually what the Bible tells us to do as well, on a deeper level. We are to become like Christ, who never sinned and always knew what to do. As Paul puts it, "We are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ." If we grow up to have a mind more like God's Son, we will, if working properly, work better together and obey. In fact, we can't expect to fully understand all of God's laws if we don't try to understand and develop a mind like His. Paul even tells us that, too: "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus"! Learn God's methods and character, and then you will understand His laws. Develop your mind under His instruction, and you will understand His laws. 


Do The Rules Still Apply?

So, how do these sins relate to people today? It's no longer just God and two humans on the earth, and God has not been heard from for thousands of years. Do His rules no longer apply? Do people who do not believe in God no longer have to abide by His rules? There seems to be no punishment for the people today who do things that are obviously wrong. 


Fortunately, God knew we would be asking these questions and gave us answers. In fact, people in the Bible asked the same questions: David says in Psalms that he was envious when he saw the prosperity of the wicked. Paul said that The sins of some men are quite evident, going before them to judgment; for others, their sins follow after." He saw that some people's sins could seem to go unnoticed and unpunished by the God who supposedly hates sin. 


By recording passages like these, God acknowledged the apparent lack of accountability we see in the world today. Having these on record shows us that it has always been the case: until everyone always follows His rules, there will always be those who appear to get away with sin and are not condemned for it. But God tells us all over the Bible that those who follow His rules and laws will be rewarded, and even though it seems like sinners today go unpunished, they will be held accountable for what they do.


King Solomon, the wisest king of Israel, warned the people of every age about God's future plans regarding themselves when he said: "Rejoice, young man, during your childhood, and let your heart be pleasant during the days of young manhood. And follow the impulses of your heart and the desires of your eyes. Yet know that God will bring you to judgment for all these things." The definition of sin is not dependent on our belief in God. 


What is Satan's Part in Sin?

Another question we have to ask is whether or not sin is Satan's fault. No matter how you look at it, God is very clear that man is punished for his own sins. Determining who Satan is requires an unbiased look at the Bible for the source of sin, but all over Scripture, you cannot evade the principle that man is declared responsible for disobeying God's laws. Though a topic for another video, suffice it to say that the Bible definitely portrays Satan, or the Devil, as a symbol representing the enemies of God, and mankind is undeniably to blame for their wrongdoing against God. 


Paul gives us a picture of the cause of mankind's constant disobedience against God. And he shows us the solution to this problem.


  • He explains our condition: "We all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind." 

  • He then tells us how we can be cured of this: "be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust." 

  • And he tells us what the big step is that we can take when we read the Bible and know what we must do to obey God: "Be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only." 


Ultimately, following God's rules and learning why God made them is all that is needed to understand all of the Bible. 


Conclusion

Today's society is depicted in the Bible as "declaring their sin" and "hiding it not." God predicted a society that essentially proclaims their sins as good and preaches they are both allowed and right for doing the things God declares as wrong. This is so unbelievably accurate. Today, people think their actions, which are clearly labelled in the Bible as sins against God, are not wrong. This is why the concept of sin seems so foreign and vague to us today. People have forgotten the very first concept the Bible reveals to us about sin: it is God who defines what is right and wrong. 


Choosing if things are right or wrong, surprisingly, isn't up to us. God chooses, and we must learn what He has chosen. Sin can be defined as disobedience, and we, as the creation of God, have to learn about and obey God's rules if we live on God's earth. Sin is not something we define and expect God to uphold; it is something God defines and expects us to uphold. 


Although it isn't always easy for us to follow God's laws, we do need to always remember that the only true definition of sin is what God tells us in His Word. He defines what is right and what is wrong, and it's up to us to follow Him.

STUDY NOTES
Sin

What is Sin?

The concept of sin is now vague and foreign, because many have forgotten the very first rule that God teaches us about sin: God gets to decide what is right and what is wrong.

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