March 2014

Young people, but also older ones I talk to often ask me: “What is sin?” I have even met 90- or 100-year-olds who asked me that! We live in a time when people hardly have any sense of sin, because they live in so much dirt that the conscience gets covered up and no longer speaks. One very convinced 100-year-old declared firmly that he had never sinned in his life! He was always good, he always did everything well… do you think like that, too?

First of all: What is sin? Everything that separates us from God. God is holy and stated to us in His Word, the Bible, what sin is and that we will stand before Him and give responsibility. God created the first humans, Adam and Eve, put them in a beautiful garden where they had everything and where they were supposed to govern the earth. Every day, Adam and Eve went walking with God and communicated with Him, because that’s what they were created for: to communicate with their Creator, to have a loving relationship with Him, because God is love first and foremost. But love must be tested. If you as a man love a woman and she goes away with another man, then I’m sure you won’t think that she loves you, will you?  God set a tree into the Garden Eden (paradise), the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. God forbade the humans to eat of it. Well, the humans had any number of trees in Paradise; they could eat just about everything they wanted except from this one tree.

The Devil, Satan, the old serpent, who hates everything that God loves, came in the form of a snake and deceived mankind. It said: “‘You will not certainly die,’ the serpent said to the woman.  ‘For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.’” What did he do with this? He set distrust between God and man. He seduced human beings to rebel against God the Creator and that’s what he does to this day. Don’t lots of people think that they themselves are God? This insanity comes from the fall of Adam and Eve. God then threw the humans out of Paradise and their lives became hell. Don’t many say that hell is here on earth? Man had a great life with God, no stress, no problems, etc. because there was no sin in Paradise. Sin destroyed mankind; it made life on earth hard, despite the good days. Worst of all, the relationship with God, Yahweh (the Hebrew name of God) was destroyed. That’s why Yahweh became a man, and went to the Cross for us, in order to bear our sins on the Cross so that mankind could have a relationship with his Creator again.

So humans now know what’s good and bad if they don’t suppress their conscience. But what use is that? They are separated from God and will be separated from HIM eternally if they don’t accept God’s redemption, namely the sacrifice of Jesus on the Cross for their guilt!

Is there anyone on earth who hasn’t sinned? Let’s look at the 10 commandments in Exodus Chapter 20: 1. You shall have no other gods before me… How many people have other gods than (Yahweh) Jesus Christ? For many young men, football or sex is a god!!! 2. “You shall not make for yourself an image … You shall not bow down to them or worship them” How many Catholics, Orthodox, Buddhists, Hindus, etc. pray daily to idols of stone or wood? In Mecca, the Muslims kiss a stone which is supposed to take away their sins. That’s idolatry. 3. “You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God”… How many people say daily: “Oh God, oh God” without thinking of God, and how many swear and curse Him daily? 4. “Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work.” The Jews had the Saturday, we have Saturday and Sunday, but how many people still rest and think about their Creator? 5. Honor your father and your mother, as the Lord your God has commanded you,… so that you may live long and that it may go well with you.”… How many people still honor their parents; don’t they rather put their parents into a home so that they don’t need to bother with them. 6. “You shall not murder.” I’m sure you’ve never killed anyone but you can also kill in your thoughts or with words. 7.”You shall not commit adultery.”… More than half of marriages end in divorce, unmarried people live together, even children are exposed to sex, prostitution, adultery and whoring are widespread in our society.  8.“You shall not steal.”… Haven’t you ever stolen anything?  9. “You shall not give false testimony (lie) against your neighbor.“ … Have you never lied? 10. “You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife. You shall not set your desire on your neighbor’s house or land, … or anything that belongs to your neighbor.” Have you never coveted? People sin on a daily basis with what they speak, think and do.

That’s why God says in the Bible: “There is no one who does good, not even one.” If God says that, then He knows what He’s saying. Romans 3:23 also says: for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,  and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.  Accept this redemption! In Galatians 5:19-20 it says: “The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.”    

Maybe you’re just such a good person, you do sooo many good deeds, you go to church every day, light a candle, pray to the dead, for the dead and feel so secure that you think God is happy with you. The Bible says: You are a sinner and need salvation! And the worst thing is that you trust your goodness, which is self-righteous, hypocrisy, being a Pharisee. You can’t go to heaven because you’re “good”, but because God became man and went to the cross for you. Accept this redemption, otherwise you will be just as lost as the worst sinner. In religion, it’s about self-redemption, you try to redeem yourself with good deeds. In true Christianity it’s about a personal relationship, friendship with the living God Yahweh through Jesus Christ. It’s about the Cross! Embrace the Cross, bow before the living God, humble your self before HIM.

God knew that we can’t make it, that we would sin through our eyes, ears, tongue etc., because we are sinners. That’s why He sent his dearest, Jesus Christ, for you. Without Jesus Christ there is no redemption. We are redeemed by God’s grace. It’s a gift, accept it!