In the course of the sermon I share a working definition of sin for our series. I poured over that definition last week and it was seriously burdensome and wrought with careful thought. Here is the definition I shared:
"Sin is a defiant rebellion tied to Satan’s work of evil in the world that distances and divides us from God most Holy. Sin stirs creation to act against its creator, God, causing suffering in the world and constant disruption of the ongoing divine battle. Sin is acting its wrathful outcomes on the guilty and the innocent, the just and the unjust. Sin respects no person, no being, none of creation; it invades individuals and whole communities; as its ultimate desire is to wreak unexplainable havoc upon an impenetrable Kingdom."
Those few sentences took hours upon hours to write. I know its not a perfect definition. It's a working definition. I wanted to tie into the definition the idea that sin is involved in a battle of cosmic proportions. Before I preached the sermon I shared the definition with a friend of mine and what caught his attention was, "...it invades individuals and whole communities..."
That drew his attention before the events of Dallas and my response to him was how there are so many instances in scripture where the community at large gives in to their sin. Just to name a few: The story of the flood, the Israelites worship of the golden calf, the tower of Babel, Elijah and prophets of BAAL, the Pharisees, the insurrection against Jesus, the stoning of Stephen, and the riots of Acts.
There is much to explore on the subject of sin. While I'm convicted that one should not glorify evil or Satan's work, I also am convicted that the world, especially Christians, could benefit from not jumping directly to forgiveness and grace without reflecting on what exactly it is that they need forgiveness and grace from in their life.
Jesus holds up either way, the difference becomes in the richness of our lives as we live for Him!