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Ten Concepts, book by H. H. Pope Shenouda III

33- Sin with regard to man

 

Sin with regard to man sin is losing the divine image...

We are created in God's image and likeness, and even though we lost that image when our forefathers fell, we restored it by the grace of the New Testament. However, we lose it again every time we sin because a sinner cannot be in God's image, for God is holy.

Sin is also depriving oneself of God...

You are a branch in the vine as long as you abide in it and as long as the juice of the vine runs in you and you live

and give fruit, God prunes you to give more fruit. But the branch which is detached from the vine because of living in sin, will be cast out, and thrown into the fire (John 15:1-6).

When committing sin, you are subjected to the fearful words said by the Lord to those who practice lawlessness, "I never knew you; depart from Me" (Matt. 7:23).

It is amazing that these words referred to people who had said to Him, "Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?"

What a painful thing that the Lord declares that He does not know us!!

The same words were said by the Lord to the foolish virgins, "Assuredly, I say to you, I do not know you" (Matt. 25:12). He even shut the door and left them outside, while the wise virgins attended the wedding.

Sin is corruption of the human nature...

You can imagine the condition of Adam and Eve before the fall. They were in wonderful innocence, simplicity and purity. But sin changed their heart and sight, "the woman saw that the tree was good for food, that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree desirable" (Gen. 3:6).

St-Takla.org           Image: Grapes صورة: العنب

St-Takla.org Image: Grapes

صورة في موقع الأنبا تكلا: العنب

The tree always existed in the garden, and Eve never looked at it so desirably, yet sin changed the way she perceived the tree; and planted lust in her heart and corrupted her innocent nature.

Man entered into the dualism of good and evil and knowing what is permissible and what is forbidden. He lost his simplicity, knew the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life (1 John 2:16). Flesh began to lust against the spirit and the spirit against the flesh and both contradict one another (Gal. 5:1-7).

Believe me, even the features of the face change by sin...

The look, the smile, the tone of the voice and the whole form of the person change, as we have discussed this issue before here on st-takla.org in other sections. That is why the Apostle advises us, saying, "be transformed by the renewing of your mind" (Rom. 12:2).

If you meet one of your friends whom you have not seen for a long time, and this friend has been living in sin, you might say to yourself upon seeing him, "This is not the person I knew before. Everything about him has changed, even his features!"

Sin is defeat, failure and weakness...

This is a fact even though a sinner thinks that he has attained many things from the world, in reality, he has failed. King Saul was not powerful when he chased

David in the wilderness but rather was defeated by himself and his jealousy. Finally he felt his defeat and lifted up his voice and wept, saying to David, "You are more righteous than I; for you have rewarded me with good, whereas I have rewarded you with evil" (1 Sam. 24:16,17).

A sinner is a weak person who fails to resist sin and is conquered by evil. He is defeated by his lust for sin. He has become unworthy of God's promises to those who conquer as mentioned in the Lord's messages to the seven churches (Rev. 2:3).

Such a person is defeated, not only by sin that fights from the outside, but more so by the sin that abides within his heart.

Lastly, sin is death...

I cannot find a more wonderful description than that mentioned by the Lord to the angel of the church in Sardis, "you have a name that you are alive, but you are dead" (Rev. 1:3). The Lord said the same about the lost son who repented, "For this my son was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found" (Luke 15:24).


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