Summary: Jesus taught that sin is a condition of the heart and not just our actions. We have been trained by the world to think differently.
Lies We Believe…About Sin
a. I have people do all the time is ask me “is such and such a sin?”
i. I always have to take a deep breath after hearing that question.
ii. My answer will be similar to going into a restaurant without prices on the menu. If you
have to ask…you can’t afford it…and if you have to ask if it is a sin, it probably is.
iii. What bothers me the most about approaching sin from a list of do’s and don’ts is that it
reduces my relationship with God to that of a strict parent who is watching his child’s
every move, waiting for them to step out of line.
1. I don’t believe the bible tells us that.
2. There are many things that are clearly sin – murder, adultery, lying, stealing, etc.
3. And there are many things that aren’t good for us and that can be “sin” for us,
from worrying, to overeating, to watching a disturbing movie, to not coming to
worship on Sunday.
a. But they aren’t sin because they are a list, but because they are a rejection
of God’s perfect will for us.
4. Romans 14:23 says “…whatever is not from faith is sin.”
b. What is sin.
i. The Hebrew word Chata and the Greek word for Sin is hamartia which means to “miss
the mark” as used for a marksman aiming an arrow at a target.
1. If the archer was saying he missed the bulls eye, he would say he sinned.
2. It is the same about us. God has a bulls eye, a target for us to aim for, it is His
perfect standard of righteousness. And none of us can hit it. Even our best
attempts fall short.
3. Some churches have tried to deal with sin by making the target bigger because
they don’t want to hurt someone’s self-worth by telling them that what they are
doing will destroy them.
4. But the bible tells us as it is. Sin will destroy you.
ii. The Bible has several other words to describe sin such as transgression, disobedience,
rebellion, and iniquity.
iii. In the New Testament, sin is viewed as a lack of fellowship with God.
1. The ideal life being one of fellowship with God and anything which disturbs or
distorts this fellowship is sin.
2. The New Testament view of sin is somewhat more subjective than the objective
lists of the Old Testament.
a. Jesus taught that sin is a condition of the heart and not just our actions.
b. How does a worm get inside an apple? Perhaps you think the worm
burrows in from the outside. No, scientists have discovered that the worm
comes from inside. But how does he get in there? Simple! An insect lays
an egg in the apple blossom. Sometime later, the worm hatches in the
heart of the apple, then eats his way out. Sin, like the worn, begins in the
heart and works its way out through a person’s thoughts, words, and
Let’s look at some of the misconceptions some of us may have about sin.
2. Sin will send me to hell. (I got to be good)
bob Higgins Page 1 5/20/2006
a. Tell the story from the Plain Dealer, about the man in the church in downtown Cleveland who
was one of the few in attendance. Asked why he was so faithful, he replied, “I got to be good, I
want to go to heaven.”
b. This comes about as a fear mentality concerning salvation and sin.
i. It comes from a spirit of legalism that uses a desire for reward and the fear of punishment
as its motives.
ii. Fear and desire for reward are human needs which are easily manipulated by religion.
iii. The truth is that no one is going to heaven for avoiding some sins in their life.
iv. And no one is going to hell for committing certain sins.
v. But Pastor, what about the “lists” in the bible that say no “adulterer, homosexual or
thief” will inherit the kingdom of God?
1. That is found in 1 Corinthians 6:9-11. Let’s look at it: Or do you not know that
the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither
fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, 10
nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will
inherit the kingdom of God. 11 Such were some of you; but you were washed, but
you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ
and in the Spirit of our God.
2. If no one who has done these things can inherit the Kingdom of God, then that