Golden Pillar Class Study, teacher Diana Licon.

Sin is any known action that goes against God’s law or will. Sin harms our relationship with God and others. Sin is not merely a deficiency but a rebellion and disobedience to what God has declared as right. The Greek word in the Bible means to miss the mark. The definition of sin gives us a target to aim at and a choice to hit the target when we know it’s there.

James 4:17 Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.

Sin was introduced in the garden of Eden and it destroyed man’s relationship with God. This is still true today. Some people have believed there were some sins that aren’t so bad. They think surely God doesn’t care if we tell a little lie or deceive people in a business deal. If people know what God’s will is and they don’t do it, it will separate them from God, just like Adam and Eve when they were cast out of the Garden of Eden for their one sin. God isn’t a respector of persons so he won’t hold one person accountable for their sin but let another do a few sins. People want to excuse or justify their wrong doing so they can do their own will.

James 2:10 For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.

Sin is very important to God! The wages of sin is death. All sins are the same in God’s sight. Little children don’t know when something is wrong. They’re not accountable for sin. When someone gets older, their soul gets darkened by the sins they commit. An older person gets their heart scarred by their sins. Only the blood of Christ can take away sin.  The longer you’re in sin, the more scars you get. A person who smoked for years has scars that will keep them from getting well when they are ill. People may look nice on the outside but we don’t know if destructive forces of sin are working on the inside. We can’t be prejudiced in our thinking by how someone looks on the outside. People try to cover up the bad things inside. Rich people can have mansions, yachts, and prestige but be miserable. We need to have a burden for everyone that isn’t saved because they all have the destructive forces of sin working in them. The enemy can get someone so bound up or destroyed by drugs that they can’t even find God. It’s a sad plight of the world.

Romans 6:20 For when ye were the servants of sin, ye were free from righteousness.

Paul talked about what separates us from God in Romans 8. He said sin is the only thing that can separate us! Adam Clarke said a man wishes to see how his own natural face appears. He looks in a mirror, sees his own blemishes, and feels bad so doesn’t want to see it. That’s like people that come to church and see themselves in the message but they don’t want to hear it, so they leave or think about what they’re going to do when the service is over. The mirror is the word of God, the preaching, and the studying. People all make choices about what they will do when they hear. When people get saved, they may still have scars that cause them to have some strange ways. The scars can be from trauma or from the way they were raised. People have bad habits when they’re first saved that they need to work on. God will show you things you need to work on. People who haven’t had discipline in their life about what they let their mind think about are forgiven but they have a bad habit they need to overcome. Sister Diana’s family was very critical. God showed her that criticism doesn’t do any good. It makes barriers and alienates people. God helped her to overcome.

James 1:23 For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass:

God wants to help us be overcomers. Ask God to help you look at souls through spiritual eyes to have a soul burden for them because of the destructive ways of sin in them. We’re more likely to talk to people if we look at them that way. God will move on you when you see people lost and going to eternity lost unless they’re saved. Sometimes your greatest plea is not heeded by those you talk to. Sister Diana had a son who was that way. She and her husband pleaded with him about the way he was going. He was so hardened by sin and said, no. He died In the Sacramento River when he was 20 years old. It was a grief but more of a grief because he wouldn’t listen to her or to God. If we have children or loved ones, it’s important that you do or say all that God wants in trying to reach them. This is how to be a hero to them.

Sister Diana read a story about a man who rescued a woman from a Polar bear. The bear was shaking the woman as she called for help. The man felt propelled to help. The bear let the woman go but he got mauled and spent 7 days in the hospital after 2 surgeries. He was the woman’s hero. If we see a soul in need, it propels us to do something. When we think of those who dealt with us to be saved, we can say “thank you will never be enough.” There’s a lot of sacrifice in reaching out, being rejected, and helping you understand the Bible. Don’t let that be a discouragement to trying and being obedient to God. You can be a prayer hero – more than a one time thing. The soul burden needs to stay with you. We need compassion for sin-sick souls. We need to be longsuffering, compassionate, and kind for those who were recently saved. We all have baggage we brought with us when we were saved that isn’t sin. Be patient with those who are working out their salvation and on their bad habits, even after 50 years since being saved. Love suffers long and is kind.

Philippians 2:12 Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.

We need to longsuffer people that are in sin when they’re gruff, angry, or mean. They’re damaged by sin. God has a way to lead us out of the destructive way of sin. We can be heroes to the sin-sick world by our actions.

Romans 15:1-6 We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let every one of us please his neighbour for his good to edification. For even Christ pleased not himself; but, as it is written, The reproaches of them that reproached thee fell on me. For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope. Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus: That ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.