What is your understanding of Sin and what is the effect of your understanding on your relationship with God?
One evening while praying my youngest son, Jörgen who was 4 years old at the time prayed: “Thank you Lord for my sin?” Not sure what to make of it I asked him if he knew what sin was? He replied without blinking: “No, but you get it at church so it must be good.” What he heard was the message of sin, not the message of love or grace. In his little mind he knew that God is good so if sin is that important to the people of the church it must be good.
The sad reality is that we focus much more on what is wrong than on what is right. On what is bad than on what is good. God called us to live a life of triumph in His presence not to wriggle away in fear, overwhelmed by our own shortcomings.
The most of us grew up focusing on the sin we might not do, that we were taught to be afraid of life. The Church is suppose to teach us about the good we must do – to live life to the fullest. To enjoy every moment of life we are given.
Our theology of sin was shaped by Augustine, who taught that we are shaped by Original Sin. Sin was the starting point from where Augustine formed his theology of grace. Up to this point sin was not a major point the theology of the time. The major focus was on God’s relational character. On focusing on sin Augustine shifted from relationship to wrong and right – good and evil. Thus a sinner now became someone who did things wrong rather that a person who neglected their relationship with the God of grace.
To understand Sin we must look at our definition of sin. According to my understanding of Sin it is something as follow: God the loving Father wants the best for us. He loves us with a passion. When I do things that hurt myself and/or others, God experience pain because His beloved (me and you) are in pain. Therefore God said do not Sin – It is not so much a command than a cry of Love. It is the Loving God who wants to spare me and others the pain of our mistakes. He wants to spare Himself the pain of seeing us in pain.
Therefore sinning or not sinning is not the focus of my faith but my relationship with a loving Father. I don’t have to live with this desperate guilt and fear for sin. I am able to live a life joy, of love of forgiveness. In Christ I am free to love. It is not so important what I do but who I am. Loving God, myself and others. Stop focusing on sin and start living.