“Whoever commits sin also commits lawlessness, and sin is lawlessness” (1 John 3:4).
“All unrighteousness is sin” (1 John 5:17).
“Whatever is not from faith is sin” (Romans 14:23).
“Therefore, to him who knows to do good and does not do it, to him it is sin” (James 4:17).
“For all have sinned and fell short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23).
Sin is disobeying God. Obedience pleases God, but obviously disobedience does not please God. The above verses show us what sin is, and that we can be forgiven because of what God has done through His son.
It is possible to disobey God without realizing it. We may disobey God by doing what He has specifically condemned. For example, Adam and Eve disobeyed in this way. In the New Testament many sins are listed and at Galatians 5:19-21 the Bible says, “Those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.”
It is also possible to disobey God by failing to do what He has commanded (James 4:17). Even though we may not understand why we should obey commands of God doesn’t mean we are not to obey. God does not think as we do (Isaiah 55:8-9), and even if a command should seem useless and unnecessary, it must be obeyed for us to be saved and please God.
Thirdly, we may disobey God by acting without His authority. Jesus said, “And in vain they worship me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men” (Matthew 15:9). We may disobey God by substituting similar human commands for God’s commands, or by adding or subtracting commands and practices for which we have no scriptural authority (Deuteronomy 4:2; Proverbs 30:6; Revelation 22:18-19).
Some think they can add anything to God’s word which He has not specifically condemned. When God tells us what to do that excludes our adding anything or changing God’s commands in any way.
The Bible teaches us of God’s commands we must obey to become a Christian and live for Jesus in order to be saved in heaven.
—Douglas Williams, Geneva AL church bulletin