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What Is Sin?

Sin is disobedience to God, and all mankind is guilty of sinning against God. Sin came when the first man disobeyed God’s one law. It was then passed on to all generations. God has also revealed to us His law, and when we disobey it we sin against Him. The charge for sinning against God is death. God’s love provided a way for our sin to be forgiven, and we can escape its punishment.
1 John 3:4; 1 Kings 8:46; Psalm 14:3; Romans 3:23; 1 John 1:8

Sin Is Passed On To Every Generation

✪ Man was created good, but became sinful when Adam and Eve disobeyed God’s command. Therefore, sin did not come from God, but in opposition to God Himself and His law.
Genesis 2:17; 3:6; Deuteronomy 32:4; James 1:13

✪ Because of this, Adam and Eve became sinful beings. They were no longer good or innocent. Every person who is conceived after them would also inherit this sinful nature.
Psalm 51:5

✪ Every human being is born a sinner. Therefore, every part of who we are (thoughts, actions, emotions, desires, motives, physical bodies, attitude, etc.) is corrupted by sin. God sees all of our good as filthy rags. To God there is only good and bad, no middle ground.
Romans 7:18; Jeremiah 17:9; Romans 3:11–12; Isaiah 64:6

Sin Is Disobedience To God’s Law

✪ In the Old Testament, one part of the Bible that teaches us God’s law is called the “Ten Commandments.” Let’s look at a summary of God’s law with a tender conscience to see if you are guilty or not.
Exodus 20:1–17

✪ You shall have no other gods before God, nor make unto thee any graven image. Have you always loved the true God above all else? Have you worshipped other gods, religions, or idols? Have you made a god in your mind?

✪ You shall not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain. Have you ever used God’s Holy Name as a curse word?

✪ Honor thy father and thy mother. Have you honored and obeyed your parents?

✪ You shall not kill, commit adultery, steal, bear false witness, or covet. Have you done any of these?

✪ In the New Testament, Jesus helps us understand that sinning is not just in our actions but also in our thoughts and attitudes.

✪ God considers hatred to be equal with murder.
Matthew 5:21–22

✪ Looking upon someone with lust is adultery.
Matthew 5:27–28

✪ How did you measure up? Have you committed any of these? The Bible says if you have committed one, then you are guilty of all.
James 2:10

Sin Is Punishable By Death And Eternal Separation From God

✪ The day Adam sinned against God he started to die physically and was spiritually separated from God. This was also passed on to all of mankind.
Isaiah 59:2

✪ The consequence of sin is death. One day, every single person will die because every single person has sinned. After you die physically, you will be judged for your sin by God. Those found guilty (every person) will be cast into the lake of fire for all eternity, which is called the second death.
Hebrews 9:27; Romans 5:12; Exodus 34:7

✪ Because God is good, righteous, and just He hates all sin and evil. To be a righteous judge, He has to judge the sin of mankind. We are found guilty and must pay the price for our sin.
Psalms 5:4–5; Proverbs 6:16–19

Sin Is Forgivable And We Can Escape Its Punishment

1 Corinthians 15:21–22; Romans 5:12–19

✪ Even though God hates sin, He still loves us and wants to redeem us from sin. God showed His love by sending His Son, Jesus Christ, into the world to save us.
John 3:16; Romans 5:8

✪ Jesus was perfectly good or sinless—He never disobeyed God’s laws. He didn’t have to die, but He loved us so much that He willingly died on the cross to pay the price for our sin.
2 Corinthians 5:21

✪ Three days after Jesus’ death, He arose from the dead, proving everything that He had claimed was true, that He conquered death and sin, and that God accepted Him as our payment.
1 Corinthians 15:54–57

✪ This forgiveness of sins is a gift from God. It is not earned, nor is it a reward for good works. We deserve death because of our sin, but God is willing to offer us forgiveness because Jesus paid our sin debt.
Romans 6:23; Ephesians 2:8–9

Review Questions

✪ What is sin?
✪ Where did sin come from?
✪ Are all of mankind sinners? Why?
✪ What is the price for sin?
✪ Can our sins be forgiven? How?

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