Study 6 Objective:
What is sin, and why should the believe avoid it?
Back to Bible Study 6:
Sin is against God
In Psalm 51:4 a repentant David says to God, “against You, You only, have I sinned and done evil in Your sight”. Although other people were adversely affected by David’s sin, the spiritual sin was not against them: it was against God.
David repeats this thought in 2 Samuel 12:13. Job asks God, “Have I sinned? What have I done to you, O watcher of men”? (Job 7:20).
Of course, in hurting others it is as if we sin against them. Paul points out that, in so doing, actually we “sin against Christ” (1 Corinthians 8:12), who is Lord and God.
This has important implications.
First of all, since Christ is the revelation of God against Whom sin is directed, sin should be viewed Christologically, that is, through the perspective of Jesus Christ.
Sometimes sin is defined chronologically (in other words, because the Old Testament was written first, it has priority over the new in defining sin and other teachings). However, it is the viewpoint of Christ that matters to the Christian.
Secondly, since sin is against all that God is, we cannot expect God to be indifferent towards it or complacent about it. Because sin is so contrary to God’s love and goodness, it alienates our minds and hearts
from God (Isaiah 59:2), who is the Source of our very existence. Without Christ’s offer of reconciliation (Colossians 1:19-21), we would have no hope for anything but death
God wants human beings to experience loving fellowship and joy with
Him and with one another. Sin destroys that loving fellowship and joy. That is why God hates sin and will destroy it. God’s reaction to sin is one of wrath (Ephesians 5:6). God’s wrath is His positive and resolute
determination to destroy sin and its consequences. This is not because He is bitter and vindictive as humans can be, but because He loves humans so much that He will not stand by and see them destroy
themselves and others by sin.
Thirdly, God alone can judge us on this matter, and only He can forgive sin because sin is uniquely against Him. “To the Lord God belong mercy and forgiveness, though we have rebelled against Him” (Daniel 9:9).
“With Him is abundant redemption” (Psalm 130:7). Those who accept God’s merciful judgment and His forgiveness of their sins are not appointed “to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1Thessalonians 5:9).
Why is it important to understand that sin is against God?
If God alone can forgive sin, how does that affect your prayer life?
The responsibility for sin
Although it is common to place responsibility on Satan for the introduction of sin to humanity, humanity is responsible for its own sin. “…through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin,
and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned” (Romans 5:12).