Throughout time, Man has chosen to define many acts as sinful. We have labeled and relabeled the deadliest of them all. So-called acts of spirituality that we would balk at has adorned every religious culture for sins.
In corners of India, being born with leprosy is despised, so being cast to the side and ostracized is used; condemned to a life of solitude. In corners of the Middle East, being raped is a sin, so being murdered in an honor killing is used. In corners of America, being poor is a sin, so shame through tithing and offering is used. However, in corners of each of our hearts, if we are ever subject to these responses to sin we know them to be wrong.
It would be wrong to be cast off as untouchable and ostracized!
It would be wrong to perform an honor killing on my wife or daughter!
It would be wrong to perform some degree of shame on someone for being in a poverty-stricken state!
We know that it is not a sin to be raped or poor or born with skin disease, yet mankind has defined these as sinful. We DO know that rape and poverty and disease are wrong. But why then do we attack the victims of these crimes?
Why has mankind repeatedly developed and redeveloped what is considered sin? Why do we dwell on in, talk about it, and look for it in others? Why do we justify dishonorable and horrendous acts in response to these man-made institutions of sin?
Understanding that man is inherently sinful, I do not want to know what man considers sin. Understanding that I am wrong, I do not want to define sin for myself. Turning to God, what does He have to say about sin?
God has said that disease is wrong. But why then do we punish the diseased?
God has said that rape is wrong. But why then do we punish the raped?
God has said that poverty is wrong. But why then do we punish the poor?
God has said that the heart of man is wrong. But why then do we execute judgment on one another, when we are the ones indicted?!
The sin of man is not in his swearing or cursing.
The sin of man is not in his lusting or hurting others.
The sin of man is not him stumbling on any one of a list of particular rules.
These are the symptoms of a greater problem.
The sin of man is found in one act alone.
The sin of man is found in one sole infraction.
The sin of man is the simple act of manifesting anything other than Godliness.
By dogmatizing what is a sin, and the actions that follow that thinking, we manifest sinfulness. By accepting the victims of sin, and the actions that follow that thinking, we begin to manifest Godliness. When we welcome the diseased, the raped, and the poor, we manifest our Godliness.
We should strive to manifest our God-given nature. We should seek to lift-up the heads of those around us who are enduring not only the pain of these injustices, but the backlash of cultures that despises also the victim.
Why define sin? We know what sin is! We can smell it. We can taste it like the iron taste of blood in our mouth. We know what sin is! We need not clarify or define it or give it any more definable shape or respect in out lives.
Instead, let us define Godliness. Let us give shape and respect to our God-given nature. Let us dwell on, discuss, decide on and dedicate our lives to our godliness.
Our God-given nature is to give love.
Our God-given nature is to receive love.
Our God-given nature is to multiple.
Our God-given nature is to nurture.
Our God-given nature is to solve issues for the victims of sin.
Let us instead define, redefine and amplify our Godliness. Let people ponder and dwell on these acts throughout all the earth. Let Godliness, and not sin, be ever on our lips, and then we will be able to say, surely goodness and mercy shall follow us all the days of our lives.