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Lesson 7

How is sin defined by the apostle?

"Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law; for sin is the transgression of the law." 1 John 3:4.

Name the root of sin.

"Then when lust unlawful desire hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin." James  1:15.

NOTE.-"It is impossible to so explain the origin of sin as to give a reason for its existence. Yet enough may be understood concerning both the origin and the final disposition of sin, to fully make manifest the justice and benevolence of God in all His dealings with evil. Nothing is more plainly taught in Scriptures than that God was in nowise responsible for the entrance of sin; that there was no arbitrary withdrawal of divine grace, no deficiency in the divine government, that gave occasion for the uprising of rebellion. Sin is an intruder, for whose presence no reason can be given. It is mysterious, unaccountable; to excuse it, is to defend it. Could excuse for it be found, or cause be shown for its existence, it would cease to be sin. Our only definition of sin is that given in the word of God; it is "the transgression of the law;" it is the out-working of a principle at war with the great law of love which is the foundation of the divine government."-Great Controversy, 492-493.

What is the fruit of sin?

"And sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death." James 1:15.

Can man free himself from the dominion of sin?

"Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil." Jer. 13:23.

How, then, can it be said that man is morally a free agent?

"And ye will not come to Me, that ye might have life." John 5:40.

When the divine offer of help is rejected, why does not God immediately inflict upon man the threatened penalty?

"Or despisest thou the riches of His goodness and forbearance and long-suffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?" Romans 2:4.

What motive actuates God to pursue this course?

"For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord God; wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye." Eze. 18:32.

NOTE.-That is, God bears with the sinner, to give him an opportunity to repent, because when he has passed his earthly career, there is no longer opportunity for repentance.

Is the guilt of Adam's transgression imputed to his descendants?

"The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him." Eze. 18:20.

Then what is transmitted to them?

"Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others." Eph. 2:3.

What has Christ suffered for sinners?

"But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon Him; and with His stripes we are healed." lsa. 53:5.

Why did Christ suffer in the flesh?

"Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, He also Himself likewise took part of the same; that through death He might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the Devil." Heb. 2:14.

Could Christ have paid the penalty for sin in any other way?

"But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it; for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die. " Gen. 2: 17. "My covenant will I not break, nor alter the thing that is gone out of My lips. " Ps. 89:34.

NOTE.-"The wages of sin is death." Rom. 6:23. If man was ever to be reconciled to God, after having incurred the death penalty, it was necessary for Christ to taste death for every one under the sentence of death, in order to satisfy justice, and give man a hope of redemption. There was no other way in which God could be just, and yet justify, or make just, the sinner, except by having Christ, the sinless one, die for those under the sentence of death (1 Peter 3:18), and then to declare the righteousness of Christ in behalf of the sorrowing, penitent, believing sinner. Rom. 3:25, 26.

Is there a promise that all sins will be pardoned?

"If any man see his brother sin a sin which is not unto death, he shall ask, and he shall give him life for them that sin not unto death. There is a sin unto death; I do not say that he shall pray for it. "  1 John 5:16.

NOTE.-This sin is referred to by the Savior, who terms it the "sin against the Holy Ghost." That was explained by Him to be blasphemy against the Holy Spirit. This can be done, as in the case of the Pharisees, by attributing the work of the Spirit to the agency of Satan. It may also be done by willfully sinning against the admonitions of the Spirit until it has been grieved away for the last time. To be left without the promptings of the Spirit, is to be left without hope of heaven.

What precedes forgiveness of sin?

"He that covereth his sins shall not prosper; but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy." Prov. 28:13.

What follows?

"Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized everyone of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost." Acts 2:38.

Will the reign of sin ever come to an end?

"And every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and such as are in the sea, and all that are in them, heard I saying, Blessing, and honor, and glory, and power, be unto Him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb forever and ever." Rev. 5:13.

When will its effects be removed?

"But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth, also and the works that are therein shall be burned up." 2 Peter 3:10.

Why must the earth be purified?

"And unto Adam He said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life." Gen. 3:17.

How thoroughly will the effects of sin be removed?

"And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain; for the former things are passed away" Rev. 21:4.

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