Missing the Mark
There may be some sins of which a man cannot speak, but there is no sin which the blood of Christ cannot wash away. — Charles Spurgeon
Sin. It’s a word that Christians don’t like to mention because it makes us feel ashamed. We prefer to use words like struggle or mistake. But dealing with sin honestly will help us find victory from it in our future. Before we dive in, let’s answer a couple of questions that many people have about sin:
What is sin?
If you look at the Greek—the original language of the New Testament—the word for sin is hamartanō, and it means “to be mistaken.” But the definition that most scholars use is “to miss the mark,” which refers to archery. If an arrow doesn’t land in the center of a target, or the bullseye, the arrow has “missed the mark.” Sin is like that.
The mark is the standard God gave us to follow. It’s His perfect way. And we’ve all missed it according to Romans 3:23. Not one single human can claim perfection. Whether we miss the mark by a little or a lot, it's a sin.
Where did sin come from?
Sin entered the world because of the first humans, Adam and Eve. In the Old Testament book of Genesis, we read that God told Adam and Eve that they could eat from any tree in the Garden of Eden except one—the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Guess what? They ate from that tree. Because of that one act, all human beings are born with a depraved heart, and we sin the moment we have the ability to do so.
We’re all born with a sinful nature because of someone else’s choices. Seems unfair, doesn’t it? There is great news, however. Much like sin was brought into the world by one man, Adam, salvation came into the world by One Man, Jesus. God sent His Son to die on the cross for our sins. Because of Jesus’s finished work on the cross, we can have victory in our lives over sin. While we won’t achieve perfection, we can make choices that will make our lives richer and fuller.
Over the next four days of this Plan, we’ll discuss why we sin and ways to stop the cycles of sin in our lives. We’ll dive into comparing our sins with others as well as choosing to love others over retaliating. And finally, we’ll learn how to live forgiven and free—because that’s what we are.