The Truth About Sin

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You will know the truth, and the truth will make you free” (John 8:32). Jesus’ listeners said they were descendants of Abraham and had never been in bondage to anyone. He is speaking of an inner bondage. “Everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin” (John 8:34).

The classical definition of sin is to miss the mark. The mark is truth, the understanding that we are one with God. We were born into a culture programed around the belief that we are separate from God. This starting point of logic is the sin, the untruth, that manifests as many forms of enslavement to material appearances.  

John quotes Jesus as saying, “The slave does not continue in the house for ever; the son continues for ever. If the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.

Notice in the second line, the word Son is now capitalized, giving the impression Jesus is referring to himself, a very different and unintended meaning. Jesus would have used the phrase, son of man, in the same way the Old Testament used it.

“ … what is man that thou art mindful of him,
    and the son of man that thou dost care for him?

Yet thou hast made him little less than God, …” (Psalms 8:4-5).

The phrase simply means, a human being. John or his translators have taken liberty with the term. We see this again in Mark when Jesus, prior to healing a paralytic says, “The Son of man has authority on earth to forgive sins” (Mark 2:10). This would read, “The ordinary man has authority on earth to forgive sins.

Jesus is presenting two contrasting images, slave and son, to make his point. He is not using the son as a reference to himself. The permanent resident of the house is the soul. The slave is the senses-based self-image, operating from the belief in separation from God, and enslaved to material appearances.

Spiritual freedom starts with the understanding that our soul, made “… little less than God,” is now free of the material limitations we have mistakenly placed on it.

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