Questions & Answers
I don't believe sin can be ignored any more than I believe self-determination or guilt from the law can be used to control it. anonymous
I hear this mentioned all the time, but who has ever suggested IGNORING sin? There is a HUGE difference between not making sin the object of your focus and ignoring it. The ironic part of all this is that the true nature of sin is actually ignored by focusing on it. Did you follow that? :) What I'm saying is that having been transferred into the kingdom of Christ we have been given to understand - in very real ways - that sin is simply the outworking of the old empty life as it seeks to find anything but God to fill its emptiness. The perversity of this old empty life and the effects of its outworking is what is understood within us as shameful. In focusing on sin, we force sins to take precedence, and try as we may we cannot get around the categorizing of these sins based on degrees of badness based on our own individual backgrounds, preferences and beliefs. Degrees of badness insinuates that measures of goodness are off-setting the amount of evil in any particular sin. Whoa!! In the confusion, the true nature of sin is ignored. It has become such a habit to us within the mush of our law-based perspectives that we don't even realize that we are doing it.
I used to wonder why Paul spoke so much about sin in the letter of 1 Corinthians. You know, like what's up with that? But the more I looked at the letter the more I realized that Paul was taking the actual real-life outworking of sin among them and consistently describing how it came about that the wisdom of the world, as preached by their arrogant leaders, was causing them to miss the reality of Christ in their daily living. How does LAW play into this? Why else do you think he inserted that potent statement toward the end of the letter?
The sting of death is SIN, and the POWER OF SIN IS THE LAW; but thanks be to God, who gives us the VICTORY THROUGH OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST! 1 Corinthians 15:56-57
Of course what happened among them was brought about by law. I think one of the major realities we miss from this document is that law doesn't have to announce itself as being law in order for it to do the damage. We have somehow gotten the idea that what happened to the Corinthians was that so-called OTHER extreme known as licentiousness as opposed to legalism. How bogus. It IS law that brings license, and only Christ who brings freedom. But we will miss it every time we ignore the basic premise of all he wrote to them:
For I determined to know NOTHING AMONG YOU EXCEPT CHRIST, AND HIM CRUCIFIED. 1 Corinthians 2:2