Have you ever wondered why a sin is sin? What makes something bad? Most people would say that something is a sin because it goes against one of God’s commands. But have you ever asked why God commanded these things?


I mean, what standard did God use to determine what would classify as a sin and what wouldn’t? I doubt God was sitting up in Heaven one day with a list, picking things He liked for the good column and things He didn’t like for the sin column.

Throwing a ball with a puppy… good / Throwing a puppy like a ball… sin.
Cooking dinner for a friend… good / Cooking a friend for dinner… sin.

If we were to ask God why one thing is a sin when something else isn’t I don’t think He would say, “Because I said so.” I also don’t think he would say, “Because I just don’t like it.” There has to a better reason.

God takes sin very seriously. The Bible says the penalty for any sin is death. That means that even telling a little white lie deserves the death penalty.

Personally, I don’t think I would give someone the death penalty for telling me they were busy when they really just didn’t want to come to my boring party. I might have them flogged or something, but not killed!

Is God overreacting or does He have a good reason for such a severe punishment?

While I was in college I was thinking about this and someone referred me to Romans 1:25. While talking about sin, Paul gives the explanation of why it is so bad.

They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised.
Romans 1:25

The reason that sin is so bad is because sin is idol worship. It is worshipping a created thing, rather than the Creator. Sin is rejecting the one true God and worshipping a false god.

When you understand this definition of sin, you can see why the consequence of sin is so severe. Sin is saying that something else is better than God. It is making something else king and lord of your life instead of the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.

Just look at a few examples:

Pride = Worshipping yourself as god rather than the God who made you.

Greed = Worshipping money as god rather than the God.

Lust = Worshipping a human body as god, rather than the God who created it and intended it to be reserved for marriage.

Hate = Worshipping yourself as a god to judge others, rather than worshipping the God who will ultimately judge all things.

No matter what the sin. Big or small, the reason sin is so bad is because it is direct rebellion against the one and only God of the universe. When we sin, we are elevating something or someone to godlike status and pushing God out of the picture.

All sin is worship. Idol worship. Even if it’s only a little one.

What idols are in your life?