Thinking about sin
... and celebrating Jesus.
Recently I had to give a short talk/discussion at a Christian lunchtime group about sin. It reminded me why it is a good idea to think about sin – not so I get down on myself or so I am even tempted to sin, but rather to reflect on what sin is, on how God views sin, and to remind myself that I am ‘sinful’.
What is sin anyway?
Although we may have many different ideas and perceptions of what sin is, here are a few different examples of how the Bible describes what sin is:
- Firstly, sin is described as a kind of "coming up short". It’s like shooting an arrow at a target, and whilst we not only miss the bulls-eye of God’s target, we actually miss the target altogether.
- A second description of sin is that of an inward badness, where our own standards fall short of what is good.
- A third example of how the Bible describes sin is like a breach of boundaries, as if you are crossing a line you are not meant to, or jumping over a fence that says ‘do not enter’. Here, sin is stepping over the line of God’s standards.
We're all sinners
Not surprisingly, the topic of sin is not generally a popular one. However, the Bible speaks about it a lot. God says that we have all sinned. We see this in Romans 3:23 where it says “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”, and again in 1 John 1:8 we are told “If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.” Sin is a reality that is a part of all our lives. We all sin, we are all sinful.
It is so important to remember that we are sinners, and that we don’t meet God’s standards, because in doing so we are reminded of what a great and wonderful saviour Jesus is in coming to die for us while we were still sinners!
Give thanks for Jesus!
As I said earlier, the Bible talks a lot about sin. But more importantly it also talks a lot about the answer to sin. And the answer to the problem of sin is Jesus. Because our sinfulness stops us from reaching God’s standards, Jesus had to reach them for us.
So think about and remember the fact that you are sinful. Acknowledge that you don’t meet God’s standards – but let it move you to Jesus. Let your inability to reach God’s standard remind you of the one you need to rely on to meet that standard… Jesus Christ.
I’ll leave you with a verse to think about from 1 Timothy 1:15:
“Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners.”