The Cause Of Sin

Everyone knows that sin is a part of life. It is something that each one of us struggles with. We constantly sin against other people. And more importantly, we sin against God. Why? Why is this such a struggle in our life? We could blame it on Satan, and many of us do. However, what need to know what God says about it.

Sin Is a Result of Three Things

Yes, we could very easily try to put the blame on Satan every time we commit a sin against God. And it is true that Satan and his demons are constantly trying to get us to sin against God. However, what is it about us that enables Satan and his demons to succeed so often in our lives?

Temptation is one of the chief functions of Satan and his demons. But why do his temptations succeed as often as they do. The answer is very simple.

All people are tempted differently according to their own weaknesses. Yes, Satan knows us better than we know ourselves. The reason that we sin against God is because we do not understand our own weaknesses. We do not know how to control and limit the desires that God placed in us in the first place. God placed these desires in us in order to help us make our life here on the earth a better place for us and our children.

However, Satan takes advantage of our weaknesses. The Bible tells us how to defeat Satan at his own game. We can know how to defeat Satan and his temptations. The Bible gives us the knowledge that we need.

There are certain patterns that Satan always uses to tempt us. Satan uses the weaknesses that are in all of us because of the fallen nature that entered into us through that first sin, e.g. rebellion against God. See Genesis 3.

John tells us what these weaknesses are. He says that all temptations can be put into three categories. This is recorded in 1 John 2:16 (NKJV): “For all that is in the world–the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life–is not of the Father but is of the world.” Satan and his demons always use temptation in one or more of these three categories to tempt us to sin against God.

The Lust Of The Flesh

The word “lust” is a desire with an evil intent. The Greek word from which it is translated means “a longing for, or a desire for, what is forbidden.”

So the first area of temptation that Satan uses against us stems from the desires we have in our own bodies. Keep in mind that these desires, in themselves, are not bad, if used as God intended. Eve was tempted to “eat.” Eating was not wrong, but eating something that was forbidden was wrong.

Satan used the same temptation with Jesus after his forty-day fast in the desert. Matthew 4:3 (NIV) tells us “The tempter (Satan) came to him and said, ‘If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.’” It was not wrong to eat after a forty-day fast, in fact He needed to eat. However, it was wrong for Him to abuse His power to succumb to the temptation of Satan.

Satan will try to get us to satisfy the desires of our bodies in the same way. For instance, God, Himself, placed the desire for sex into our nature. It is a beautiful thing. It brings a couple closer together. It is also what is needed to bring children into the world. Yet, it becomes sin when it is engaged in outside the bounds of marriage.

The Lust of the Eyes

Satan also used this desire against Eve. The Greek word translated “lust” stems from, and is an extension of, another Greek word that means “to stretch oneself, to reach out after or long for.” This quality that God placed in us enables us to create new things that make life better for us while we are on this earth.

But Satan turned something that God intended for good into something that is evil. He used a desire for something pleasing to the eye into a “lust” for that object. In other words, she “had” to have something that was not good for her.

Desire for that which is good and beautiful is not evil. God placed that desire in each one of us so that we would seek after the best that life has to offer. It is what enables us to improve our surroundings and even ourselves.

Desire becomes lust when those dreams and desires center only on ourselves. Looking at what is beautiful is not lust. It only becomes lust when we want to take into ourselves that which does not belong to us. Looking at your wife or husband is not lust because through marriage, you belong to each other. However, looking at another woman or man in the same way is lust because you are desiring something for yourself that does not belong to you.

The Pride of Life

One of the qualities that God placed in each one of us is self-confidence. It is through self-confidence that we can accomplish new things. However, when we become so self-confident, that we think that we do not need God any more, then it becomes pride.

The pride of life has to do with the desire to live independently from God. This is what caused Satan (who was called Lucifer at the time) to rebel against God. Ezekiel 28:17 (NIV) says: “Your heart became proud on account of your beauty.” His pride in his beauty caused him to think that he was just as good and as great as God. Because he wanted to be independent from God, God granted him that “freedom” and cast him out of heaven.

It is pride that causes us to think that we do not need God. Eve thought that eating of the forbidden fruit would cause her to become wise, that is to know as much as God. This would cause her to think that she really didn’t need God to know how to live a good life.

What Eve thought would be a good thing turned out to be the worst thing that she could have done. This happens because we somehow feel that we can be as good as God. When we feel that we can know as much as God and can take care of ourselves, we tell God that we really don’t need Him or His wisdom anymore. Pride is sin because it leads us away from God.

Sin Separates Us From God

Sin separates us from God and if we die while we are separated from God, we will never find our way into heaven. If we do not desire to be dependent on God and want to live with Him while we are here on the earth, that lack of desire will not change when we die and we will be destined to live forever outside the presence of God.


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