A definition of sin

September 10, 2013 § 2 Comments

This passage from the Arcana, has an interesting definition of sin.

[Pharaoh said] I have sinned this time. That this means separation from truth and good is evident from the meaning of “sinning” as being a sundering and turning away from the Divine, thus from truth and good; consequently also separation, for he who turns himself away from truth and good, separates himself from them (AC 7589).

This is a rather broad definition of sin.

Obviously we are turning away from the Lord when we break any of the Ten Commandments. We also turn away from what is good when our hearts are focus on ourselves or worldly things. We have feelings and desires, intentions and and fantasies which turn us away from what is good, and consequently turn and severs us from the Lord.

If we look at our thoughts, our ideals, our beliefs and examine them we will see that they too often turn us away from the Lord and His truth. It is not always easy to see how our will and understanding are turning away from the Lord; or how are choices sever us from the Lord. But keeping this definition of sin in mind, may help us in our self-examination to find evils and falsities which we need to shun as sins against the Lord.

It is only in cooperating with the Lord in the shunning of sins, that the Lord can turn us towards Him, and join us to Himself.

§ 2 Responses to A definition of sin

  • reflections says:

    AC 78614 adds: “from the signification of “sinning” as being a
    sundering, withdrawal, and separation from good and truth.”

  • reflections says:

    AC 7943 talks about how we turn the good that comes from the Lord to ourselves. This turning is clearly related to the turning in above definition of sin.

    “That evil is not from the Lord, but that it arises from man is because man turns to himself that good which flows in from the Lord, and instead of regarding the Lord and what is of the Lord in all things, he regards himself. Hence comes the lust of reigning over all, and of possessing all that belongs to others; and hence come contempt for others, and hatred, revenge, and cruelty toward those who do not favor and be friendly to one’s self; hence also comes contempt for all things that are of faith and charity, because when these flow in from the Lord they are turned to self, thus away from the Lord.” (AC 7643)

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