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Sin, as defined by a new Ellison Research study, is something almost always considered wrong, particularly from a religious or moral perspective. Out the 30 behaviors studied, adultery was most often described as a sinful behavior by American respondents (81%). Next was racism (74%); using "hard" drugs such as cocaine, heroine, meth, LSD, etc. (65%); not saying anything if a cashier gives you too much change (63%); abortion (56%); and homosexual activity or sex (52%) rounded out the top five behaviors most often considered sinful by Americans. Other behaviors considered sin include reading or watching pornography (50%); swearing (46%); sex before marriage (45%); harming the environment as a consumer (41%); smoking marijuana (41%); getting drunk (41%); and not taking proper care of your body (35%). 94% of Americans who regularly attend religious worship services believe in the concept of sin compared with 80% among non-attenders. Interestingly 81% feel adultery is sinful, but only 43% say that having sexual thoughts about someone to whom they are not married is sinful. 41% believe getting drunk is sinful, yet only 14% believe drinking even a little alcohol is a sin. Gambling is a sin to 30%, but only 18% feel this way about playing the lottery. 65% feel doing hard drugs are a sin, but just 41% say this about marijuana.

(Christian Post 3/12/08)

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