What Is Sin?

In Uncategorized on July 28, 2013 at 9:02 pm

Here are some highlights I’ve excerpted from a sermon today entitled “Have You Claimed Your Full Birthright?” by Pastor Zac Poonen, given at Abundant Life Christian Fellowship in Mountain View, California:

What Sin Is, According to Unbelievers, Believers and Jesus
“We need to know what sin is before we can turn away from sin. Now a lot of people have got different understandings of sin. If you were to ask a worldly person, an unconverted, even an atheist ‘Make a list of the five most important sins you can think of’ you know what he would list: adultery, murder, theft, stealing, lying, etc. You ask most believers ‘Make a list of the most serious sins’ they would say the same thing: murder, adultery, theft, etc. But do you know that Jesus spoke about things like pride, and hypocrisy, and dirty thoughts, and anger? But the control of our tongue and the love of money, those things don’t figure in the list of sins which most believers think of. And so what we have turned away from is just a lot of things that lots of decent, not converted people have turned away from. And that’s why the quality of our life remains the same. There’s as much fighting and quarreling in the homes of believers as there is in the homes of unbelievers. There’s as much divorce among Christian circles as in the world. What’s the reason for this? There are Christians now–boys and girls living together, just like in the world. All this is because repentance has not been preached in every nation, as it should be. There’s a problem in the foundation.

The Clearest Definition of What Sin Is
“And that’s because we haven’t seen the seriousness of sin. As I’ve studied the New Testament to find what is the clearest definition of sin that I could find, not this worldly standard, but the biblical standard–I’ve come to this verse in Romans 3:23, a very well known verse to all of you, ‘All have sinned and come short of the glory of God.’ That is the definition of sin: coming short of God’s glory. And God’s glory was seen in the life of Jesus Christ, full of grace and truth. So, the definition of sin in the New Testament is not the Ten Commandments; that’s a very, very low standard. It’s anything less than the life of Christ. Anything less than the life of Christ. Anything un-Christ-like in my life is sin. And I need to get light on it to turn from it, and God’s given us the Holy Spirit to give us light on sin so that we can turn around completely. And if we lay a good foundation here we can have a solid building. And the ultimate purpose with which God places us Christians on earth is not just to somehow get along here and go to heaven when we die; no, it is to be a light in the darkness. …”

Here are links to audio and video of this sermon.


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