Wednesday, September 12, 2007

SIN

Steve Fuentes suggested this little question...

From whence did sin come? Is it God or the devil? What are the implications of what you believe about this?

37 comments:

andy said...

Sin and evil exist because God exists..

Basically white allows the risk of black

andy said...

I'm not saying God creates it,i'm saying His existences allows the risk of the alternative..

andy said...

But the thing that bothers me most is original sin..

I'm created in a sinful state not of my choice,then God as the nerve to judged me for being sinful,then He as the extreme nerve to send some into hell because He didn't elect those he choose to create sinful!!Talk about stacked against me!!

Basically God is the equivalent of me slapping ur ggggggggrandaughter because you upset me once!!! I can't get my head round that!!

Dead Theologians said...

Andy,

Rick and I spoke about this in the Baptism post. Here is my take on it.

Satan/Lucifer has never and will never create anything.

I believe God CREATED sin just like he created everything else. But God did not COMMIT sin. That is man and Satan's doing.

DT

Patrick H. said...

Yes DT, I agree. It is difficult to understand that God created satan fully knowing that he would rebel, and God created Adam fully knowing that he would be enticed and corrupted by giving in to the tempter's words.

However in looking at this from a Christocentric view, this had to happen else there would be no need of a Saviour for man. No fall, no salvation. Christ being the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world, and us (the Church) being chosen in Him before the foundation of the world sheds much light on the fall, and God's predestined plan.

Great topic by the way.

approvedworkman said...

A post sure to create a fuss amongst the open-theist types. :-)

Amen, to all of the above.

Genesis 3:
5 For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil."

7 Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked

22 Then the LORD God said, "Behold, the man has become like one of us in knowing good and evil. Now, lest he reach out his hand and take also of the tree of life and eat, and live forever—" 23therefore the LORD God sent him out from the garden of Eden to work the ground from which he was taken.

Apparently evil was a known commodity before the creation of man, as God has always possessed this knowledge.
He being perfectly holy and good will never do anything outside of His perfect and good nature.

Mankind, i.e. outside of Christ, can only do evil. Romans 7

This knowledge is the forbidden fruit that all men consume daily. It is called situational ethics, relativism, subjectivism, etc etc

Sin, i.e. the fruit of evil came into being through both men and angels, and God is the creator of both men and angels, who He foreknew would cause sin and death to enter creation.

JSU said...

I agree DT,
God created sin or else it would not have been created. God created Satan or else he wouldn't of existed. God created hell or else it wouldn't have existed. In His holiness and perfection, He did not commit sin. He sovereignly designed all good and evil to bring Him glory over all.

andy said...

Hi all yep sorry DT you have gone over it a few times,it just bugs me!!

DT i don't think God created sin or evil as much as there by-product of Him existing..For example if God is love,then there's the risk of the opposite existing right?

I heard a great sermon on this once,it really helped me figure some things out,unfortunately i'm not very good at explaining what he meant!!
andy

approvedworkman said...

Andy
How could evil or sin exist as a by-product/reaction to, God's existence? That would mean good and evil, God and devil, have always co-existed, which is classic dualist theology.
Prior to creation only God existed, so where did evil come from?

andy said...

The risk of Evil comes from God existing..

God is the opposite of evil,therefore its valid to believe its oppoisite will exisit.Its not dualism its just the capability is there

approvedworkman said...

Someone would have to create it then, and men create nothing. By create I mean calling something into existence that never existed prior to it's creation.
What do we do with Genesis 3 then where God says that man has become "like us, knowing good and evil"? The serpent said the same thing to Eve. Therefore he used the truth to cover the real lie which is "you will not die".
God has always had the knowledge of good and evil. Man sinned by eating the fruit of the forbidden tree which God himself placed in the garden, knowing full well that they would violate His command and eat of it.
Interesting dichotomy here, ....eh?

Satan's rebellion was in heaven. I wondered what precipitated that.

andy said...

How can God create sin? Isn't sin not wanting God,so its just a side effect of His existences..

I don't like the idea that God created sin,you make God sound like Edward scissorhands,even when He loves us He cuts us..

Maybe i'm wrong,but isn't there a opposite of everything?..Didn't God the Father always love the Son and the HS,can that be called love without its opposite existing?

Henry (Rick) Frueh said...

You guys are leaving out a very important and obvious ingredient - mytery.

Can God make a mountain so big He couldn't move it? Yes.

Could God move that same mountain? Yes?

What?? How do you describe the color red to a man born blind? There is no reference point with which to use to provide some definition, he cannot see and color is meaningless to him.

In the same way attempting to fully unfold the meaning of creation, the essence of the Creator, and the chronology of the purpose is putting lightning in a bottle. We do know one immutable fact, God made everything, inherant with the ability to sin, and with the complete knowledge of what would happen. All the particulars are within the Godhead maybe to be revealed to us one day.

Until then, "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not unto your own understanding". Our own understanding is sadly lacking at best!

dsstanfield said...

WCF:

God from all eternity did, by the most wise and holy counsel of His own will, freely, and unchangeably ordain whatsoever comes to pass: yet so, as thereby neither is God the author of sin, nor is violence offered to the will of the creatures, nor is the liberty or contingency of second causes taken away, but rather established.

James 1:13: "Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth He any man.

I John 1:5 "This then is the message which we have heard of Him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all."

My finite mind will never be able to wrap around this.

Mark said...

Isaiah 45:5-13 (5) I am the LORD, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me:

(6) That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the LORD, and there is none else.

(7) I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.

(8) Drop down, ye heavens, from above, and let the skies pour down righteousness: let the earth open, and let them bring forth salvation, and let righteousness spring up together; I the LORD have created it.

(9) Woe unto him that striveth with his Maker! Let the potsherd strive with the potsherds of the earth. Shall the clay say to him that fashioneth it, What makest thou? or thy work, He hath no hands?

(10) Woe unto him that saith unto his father, What begettest thou? or to the woman, What hast thou brought forth?

(11) Thus saith the LORD, the Holy One of Israel, and his Maker, Ask me of things to come concerning my sons, and concerning the work of my hands command ye me.

(12) I have made the earth, and created man upon it: I, even my hands, have stretched out the heavens, and all their host have I commanded.

(13)I have raised him up in righteousness, and I will direct all his ways: he shall build my city, and he shall let go my captives, not for price nor reward, saith the LORD of hosts.


In verse 7 the word evil in Hebrew is "ra" is defined below:

from 7489; bad or (as noun) evil (natural or moral):-- adversity, affliction,
bad, calamity, + displease(-ure), distress, evil((- favouredness), man,
thing), + exceedingly, X great, grief(-vous), harm, heavy, hurt(-ful), ill
(favoured), + mark, mischief(-vous), misery, naught(-ty), noisome, + not
please, sad(-ly), sore, sorrow, trouble, vex, wicked(-ly, -ness, one),
worse(-st), wretchedness, wrong. (Incl. feminine raaah; as adjective or
noun.).

This is way beyond what I dare to contemplate, I gotta believe that nothing happens outside the soveriegn will of God, yet He causes no one to sin. There is good and evil, there is truth and lies, there is light and dark, there is God. For some reason He has allowed evil, He will be glorified never the less.

approvedworkman said...

mark
I almost posted that passage in my last comment.

Rick,
I don't believe that we are trying to wrap up the Lord in a nice neat package. We don't have that much wrapping paper. :-)
The pondering of the paradox of God is an occasion to worship.

dss,
I wasn't saying that God tempts us, and of course there is no darkness in Him.
However the Lord says of Himself that He knows good and evil and man became like Him in that knowledge.
God does not sin yet He planted the knowledge/ability for sin to enter the world in the garden. God does not tempt, i.e. test us. We fail everytime. He does test His work in us. Eph 2:10
The garden was not a test. It was a foreknown event. Let God be true and every man a liar.

dsstanfield said...

approvedworkman,

I agree. Calvin once said, "Where the Bible ceases speaking, we should quit asking."

This is a tough one.

dss

Henry (Rick) Frueh said...

"The pondering of the paradox of God is an occasion to worship."

I wish I had said that!

Don't miss "Humor Day" at CRNinfo.

andy said...

Hi,saying God created sin is like saying the sun created shadows,its just the consequences of the suns existences! Sin is because God is IAM

approvedworkman said...

dss
A tough one indeed!
God being the author of creation is responsible for mankind and all of its actions.
Has anyone considered that the cross is not only the place of reconciliation and forgiveness, but that it is also the Lord publicly taking responsibility?
Jesus agonized in the garden, the night before he died. The garden is significant as He is the last Adam, and he ate the fruit of the tree of life, i.e. the cross. No wonder Eve went for the fruit offered her. God's plan was the cross from the beginning.
"Not my will, but yours be done."
Without the fall and sin and death entering in, the cross would be unnecessary. Adam and his (literally) better half refused it, Jesus embraced it.
The Lord by going to the cross/tree of life first, ensured eternal life for that which was taken from His side, AFTER He made the choice/sacrifice
This sounds completely foreign to us. Think about it. His ways and thoughts aren't remotely like ours.
I am not confident that I am doing it justice here.

Isaiah 55:
6 "Seek the LORD while he may be found;
call upon him while he is near;
7 let the wicked forsake his way,
and the unrighteous man his thoughts;
let him return to the LORD, that he may have compassion on him,
and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.
8 For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways, declares the LORD.
9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.

Colossians 2:
8See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ. 9For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily, 10and you have been filled in him, who is the head of all rule and authority. 11In him also you were circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, by putting off the body of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, 12 having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God, who raised him from the dead. 13 And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, 14by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross. 15 He disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in him.

Romans 11:
33Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways!
34"For who has known the mind of the Lord,
or who has been his counselor?"
35"Or who has given a gift to him
that he might be repaid?"
36For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen.

andy said...

Maybe your say well the sun does create shadows!!But it doesn't on purpose,and nor does God sin!!

Wowee you've got God making hell,sin,unelected mannnn he doesn't sound very loving

Henry (Rick) Frueh said...

"Has anyone considered that the cross is not only the place of reconciliation and forgiveness, but that it is also the Lord publicly taking responsibility?"

That leads to universalism. Man stands guilty before God, Jesus is the scapegoat not the guilty.

approvedworkman said...

Rick
I am not sure what you are getting at. First time I have ever been accused of being "universalist"

Isaiah 53:
4 Surely he has borne our griefs
and carried our sorrows;
yet we esteemed him stricken,
smitten by God, and afflicted.
5 But he was wounded for our transgressions;
he was crushed for our iniquities;
upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace,
and with his stripes we are healed.
6 All we like sheep have gone astray;
we have turned—every one—to his own way;
and the LORD has laid on him
the iniquity of us all.
7He was oppressed, and he was afflicted,
yet he opened not his mouth;
like a lamb that is led to the slaughter,
and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent,
so he opened not his mouth.
8By oppression and judgment he was taken away;
and as for his generation, who considered
that he was cut off out of the land of the living,
stricken for the transgression of my people?
9And they made his grave with the wicked
and with a rich man in his death,
although he had done no violence,
and there was no deceit in his mouth.
10Yet it was the will of the LORD to crush him;
he has put him to grief;
when his soul makes an offering for guilt,
he shall see his offspring; he shall prolong his days;
the will of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.
12 Therefore I will divide him a portion with the many,
and he shall divide the spoil with the strong,
because he poured out his soul to death
and was numbered with the transgressors;
yet he bore the sin of many,
and makes intercession for the transgressors.

Luke 22:
37For I tell you that this Scripture must be fulfilled in me: 'And he was numbered with the transgressors.' For what is written about me has its fulfillment."


Acts 13:
27For those who live in Jerusalem and their rulers, because they did not recognize him nor understand the utterances of the prophets, which are read every Sabbath, fulfilled them by condemning him. 28And though they found in him no guilt worthy of death, they asked Pilate to have him executed.

2 Cor 5:
21For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

Psalm 22:
1 My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
Why are you so far from saving me, from the words of my groaning?


This goes right in line with the question in the original post.

Henry (Rick) Frueh said...

I wasn't implying you were a universalist, I was saying, if I understand you correctly, that if God was taking responsibility for creating us with the foreknowledge of our sin then He would be taking responsibility for everyone.

That's all. Man is responsible, not God.

Steve said...

Hey Guys (and Deborah),

Interesting conversation so far.

I believe the bible teaches that God created sin, and didn't sin by doing so.

Here again we have an antinomy. On the one hand we see verses clearly teach God created everything that exists, including evil, like:

Colossians 1:16-17 "16 For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him.
17 And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist."

and

Isaiah 45:7 "7 I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things."

Then on the other hand, we see verses that clearly teach that God is holy, light, just, etc, and therefore didn't sin by creating evil.

Verses like:

1 John 1:5 "5 ¶ This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all."

or

1 Peter 1:15-16 "15 but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct,
16 because it is written, "Be holy, for I am holy."

So in the end, we must accept the fact that God created good and evil, and rest in the fact that He knows what He's doing.

Thank God for the cross, for without it, we would in deed be lost and without a clue!

Melissa said...

Steve, I agree:

"So in the end, we must accept the fact that God created good and evil, and rest in the fact that He knows what He's doing.

Thank God for the cross, for without it, we would in deed be lost and without a clue!"

I am learning so many things about God that I thought I knew. How can our finite minds even attempt to comprehend Him?!! Thank God that His ways and thoughts are higher than ours. Thank God that we can rest in Him and know Him through what He has revealed to us in scripture. We have to search His word to know Him.

There is no getting around His word. If He says that He is the Creator of ALL things then that is WHo He is. We cannot try to justify or rework ALL things to make Him more pleasing or palatable to our minds. I have found this to be true. He is the I AM and He is Sovereign.

You guys have been a real help in motivating me to search for the truth in these topics.

Thanks so much!

MM said...

DT,

Just wanted to pop in and thank you for your comment on my blog- apologies for not getting back to you sooner! I rarely check the comments at the 'Archive, and I had not seen your email in our blog email account. Thanks for your kind words. May God richly bless you and yours-

In Christ
MM

dk said...

Is sin not the result of disobedience to God?
Eating unclean food in the old testament times would have been a sin, but not in new testament times.
God wouldn't ask us to do something if we can't do it. If we still go ahead and do it, then that becomes sin.

dk

approvedworkman said...

"God wouldn't ask us to do something if we can't do it."

Joshua 24:
16Then the people answered, "Far be it from us that we should forsake the LORD to serve other gods,

and

19But Joshua said to the people, "You are not able to serve the LORD, for he is a holy God.


Romans 7:
13Did that which is good, then, bring death to me? By no means! It was sin, producing death in me through what is good, in order that sin might be shown to be sin, and through the commandment might become sinful beyond measure. 14For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am of the flesh, sold under sin. 15For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. 16Now if I do what I do not want, I agree with the law, that it is good. 17So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. 18For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. 19 For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. 20Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me.

21So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. 22For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, 23but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. 24Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? 25Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.

God foreknew that Adam would eat of the forbidden fruit. He knew that men were incapable of keeping the whole Law as they were and are fallen.

dk said...

AW,
Rather than generalising, could you please indicate which of God's commandments is impossible for man to obey?
It is just that we dont want to obey at times, when we think disobedience is not going to result in any great danger.

If some body knows that a person has aids, will he / she have sexual intercouse with that person?
So basically, it is our lack of faith in God that causes disobedience and sin.

Could you also suggest the meaning of sin, if it is not just disobedience to God's commandments?

dk

approvedworkman said...

James 2:
10For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become accountable for all of it. 11For he who said, "Do not commit adultery," also said, "Do not murder." If you do not commit adultery but do murder, you have become a transgressor of the law.


Matthew 5:
21 "You have heard that it was said to those of old, 'You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgment.' 22But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, 'You fool!' will be liable to the hell of fire.

and;

27 "You have heard that it was said, 'You shall not commit adultery.' 28But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart.

What law have you already violated in your heart?
The law was given to us so thar we will know that we are sinners.
Yes the law can be kept, but
Jesus was, and still is, the only man who ever kept the law perfectly, and still does on our behalf.
Don't try to tell me that you keep/have kept the Law without violation. In light of Matthew 5 there is no one who is not guilty.

so:
James 2:
12So speak and so act as those who are to be judged under the law of liberty.

dk said...

AW,
My questions were in relation to the original question - From whence did sin come?

I was very much surprised to read statements like "God created sin", "Lord publicly taking responsibility".

As you agreed, there is no commandment that man cannot obey. If sin is just disobedience (which I believe it is), then the statements above show the sorry state of christianity (or churches whose pastors make such statements) today. Accusing God for the disobedience that man does.

I agree with you that there is none who does not commit any sin in his entire life, including myself. God foreknowing that people are going to disobey does not make Him the creator of sin. He even gave His only begotten Son to forgive our sins. Still people accuse Him of creating sin!!

dk

approvedworkman said...

Sin did not create itself, and men create nothing. We are part of creation, and the created are not the creators.We procreate, i.e. we function in the way we are made.
God's complete foreknowing, and the fact that He did nothing to stop Adam and Eve speak for themselves.
God does not require us to defend or define His nature. Uzzah got zapped for steadying the ark.
The Pelagian-minded best keep their hands to themselves.
As I said God planted the tree of the knowledge of good and evil knowing beforehand what would transpire. No sin exists without that knowledge, and the Scriptures say God possessed that knowledge as part of His eternal nature.
Sin comes from men possessing the knowledge of good and evil.

dk said...

"Sin comes from men possessing the knowledge of good and evil."

Was it a sin when satan tried to establish his throne above God's?

Did Satan had a choice to do or not do that?

dk

approvedworkman said...

Satan, and some of the other angels rebelled. Is it sin? You may call it that, however, angels are not men.There is no record of God giving them a command such as the one God gave Adam in the garden. Angels did not eat of the fruit of any tree, and they cannot be saved as we can.
Men were originally created in God's image and likeness, though fallen man does not "show the Father" in any way. Jesus, as the last Adam, is the express image of God. Only those who are in Him now exist in the image and likeness of God. Colossians 1:15-20
Angels were not created in God's image and likeness, and once they rebelled they were condemned to their rebellion.
So men and angels were disobedient, the angels having not eaten the fruit of any tree, and man obtained the knowledge of good and evil AFTER he ate the fruit.
Apparently, both men and angels were able to rebel outside of obtaining the knowledge of good and evil.
Sounds like something was predestined......eh?

Romans 7:
7What then shall we say? That the law is sin? By no means! Yet if it had not been for the law, I would not have known sin. For I would not have known what it is to covet if the law had not said, "You shall not covet." 8But sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, produced in me all kinds of covetousness."

So when God forbade Adam and Eve to eat of the forbidden tree, their desire for that which was forbidden was stirred by giving them the commandment.

Romans 5:
12Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned— 13for sin indeed was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not counted where there is no law. 14Yet death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those whose sinning was not like the transgression of Adam, who was a type of the one who was to come.

If sin "entered" the world through Adam, and so death followed, then man was created with the ability to sin, before he knew what it was. After they ate they knew they were naked, as they now knew what it meant to disobey a command/law of God. They had come out from "under the covering" of God's grace.
Romans 5-6-7-8, i.e. God's Word and His plan were already reality long before Paul was on the scene.
Christ was always the plan. He was not God's "reaction" to man's indiscretion.
This is why Pelaginism and open theism in all their variant and aberrational forms are heresy.

Psalm 119:
89Forever, O LORD, your word
is firmly fixed in the heavens.
90Your faithfulness endures to all generations;

dec said...

For some reason He has allowed evil, He will be glorified never the less.

I believe the God created the sure capacity for evil so that He would be more glorified than if He had not.

Dead Theologians said...

Dec and everyone else,

Where did it come from? It did not just happen.

DT

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