How Does the Bible Define Sin?
The first noted sin in the Bible is found in Genesis.
Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”
The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’”
“You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves. – Genesis 3:1-7
The serpent questioned God’s words, “Did God really say that?”
Eve was deceived by the serpent’s interpretation. Then she disobeyed God’s instruction.
Interestingly, the first time the actual word sin is found in the Bible (NIV), God is warning Cain. He also doesn’t listen to God and kills his brother in the very next verse.
If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it. Now Cain said to his brother Abel, “Let’s go out to the field.” While they were in the field, Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him. – Genesis 4:7-8
In The Message, an explanation of sin found in Numbers 5 states that if a man or woman commits any sin, the person has broken trust with God. This explanation reflects relationship.
Sin is disobedience.
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