• Art48
    38
    What is sin? How is it defined? “An immoral act considered to be a transgression against divine law,” is one definition. A “transgression of the law of God” says another definition. “Something that violates God’s will” is yet another definition.

    If we accept those definitions, then my claim is that it’s impossible to knowingly sin. The proof is simple: we don’t know God’s laws. We don’t know God’s will. God has failed to make his will and laws known to us. (P.S. following common usage, I speak of God as masculine.)

    The emphasis is on the word “know.” Yes, we know what other people who claim to be speaking for God say what God’s will is. There is no shortage of priests, preachers, gurus, imams, and TV evangelists who claim to know what God’s will is. But that’s just people talking. God himself hasn’t made it clear. All we have are the conflicting, contradictory views of preachers and the contradictory views of scripture.

    Jews say God doesn’t want us to eat meat and dairy together. Hindus say God doesn’t want us to eat beef. Muslims say God doesn’t want us to eat pork. Christians say God is perfectly OK with us eating a bacon cheeseburger.

    Of course, God has failed to make his will known about much more important matters. Is it OK to kill another human being? The Fifth Commandment says “no.” But 1 Samuel 15 has God ordering killing of human beings: “Now go, attack the Amalekites and totally destroy all that belongs to them. Do not spare them; put to death men and women, children and infants, cattle and sheep, camels and donkeys.” Don’t forget to murder the infants, says God, allegedly. And here’s a list of wars that some major Christian denomination declared unjust and forbade its believers from fighting. And here’s the list again. That’s right, the list is empty.

    Believers often claim objective moral values exist, and go further to claim the existence of objective moral values proves God exists. But here again, God has failed to make objective moral values known to us (assuming they exist). For a few centuries, Christians in Western Europe burnt or hung women thought to be witches, following the direct command of “Thou Shalt Not Suffer a Witch to Live” in Exodus. Then we figured out that maybe we didn’t need to do that. Christians in the United States for centuries owned slaves and said God was OK with that, based on rules in Exodus about owning foreign slaves. Eventually, we came to the conclusion that it was not moral to own other people as property.

    If objective moral values about slavery and witches exist, God failed to make them known. We’ve had to struggle to discern what is moral and what is not.

    It’s as if we must base our views of right and wrong on human intuition and empathy.
  • ArielAssante
    33


    If people have access to real conscience, laws are unnecessary.
  • Alkis Piskas
    1k
    If we accept those definitions, then my claim is that it’s impossible to knowingly sin. The proof is simple: we don’t know God’s laws. We don’t know God’s will. God has failed to make his will and laws known to us. (P.S. following common usage, I speak of God as masculine.)Art48
    The definitions you offered are fine (with me) and you did well to bring them up. Few do that.
    Now about the proof: I believe we know well God’s laws because it is us who created the concept of God, his attributes, the principles involved that are related to him, etc. We must also never forget that there are different "Gods" created by different cultures, civilisations and religions. So, when we define "sin" as "an immoral act considered to be a transgression against divine law", we know well what such an act can be. BTW, I prefer using "moral rules and principles" instead of "divine law", because they are more concrete and are agreed upon among a group of people of same civilization, culture and religion.

    So, not only it is not impossible to knowingly sin, but we always know that we sin. This is what confession is all about. It's another thing if we try to justify or "burry" --try to forget, negate, etc.-- the fact that we have sin.

    BTW, note that to sin one must know about and agree with what these transgressions and the moreal rules an principles on which they are basd are and also be aware of the act of transgression. That is, one must also be able to distinguish between right and wrong, according to these moral rules and principles. Insane and in general mentally heavily sick pople, for example, often cannot do that.
  • Art48
    38
    Alkis Piskas: So, not only it is not impossible to knowingly sin, but we always know that we sin.

    As far as I can see, you don’t address evidence in the original post but merely assert the contrary.

    But if you believe we always know when we sin, then you should be able to say if stem cell research is a sin, capital punishment is a sin, abortion is a sin, masturbation is a sin, contraception is a sin, etc. Of course, you can give your opinion about such questions. But other people would disagree. And a few centuries ago, if you said burning witches or owning slaves was a sin, the great majority of Christians would have disagreed with you.

    God has failed to make his will and laws known to us. So, we struggle to determine right and wrong. In the U.S. the struggle once led to a civil war, with both sides feeling that God was on their side.
  • Jackson
    1.6k


    Sin is just more Christian fascism. A sadistic-masochistic concept.
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