Accurate Knowledge of Sin

Romans 3:20 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)

20 because by the works of law no flesh will be justified in his sight; for by law comes the accurate knowledge[1] of sin.

Jesus the Son of God said,

John 8:31-38 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)

The Truth Will Set You Free

31 So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, “If you remain in my word, you are truly my disciples, 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” 33 They answered him, “We are offspring of Abraham and have never been enslaved to anyone. How is it that you say, ‘You will become free’?”

Enslaved to Sin

34 Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who practices sin is a slave to sin. 35 The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. 36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. 37 I know that you are offspring of Abraham; yet you seek to kill me because my word finds no place in you. 38 I speak of what I have seen with my Father, and you do what you have heard from your father.”

Human ImperfectionThese words of Jesus Christ increase our knowledge of sin, showing that all of all mankind are slaves of sin, because all are doers of sin, as a result of inheriting a sinful nature and human imperfection. The Jewish people to whom Jesus was speaking were descendants of the faithful patriarch Abraham and God had given them his law through Moses. The Jewish religious leaders to whom Jesus spoke thought that they were free and could never be influenced by the powers of Satan the Devil because they were descendants of Abraham by his free woman. These same Jewish religious leaders went beyond the Mosaic Law, which was simply a tutor and guardian leading to Christ, again, the Law which they had received from God. In their twisting of the Scriptures, they believed that they had been singled out by God as a special people, given a priesthood under this law to offer animal sacrifices for their sins against the Law; and so they, therefore, considered themselves above all other humans, being fully righteous and not the slaves of sin.

GOD WILL GET YOU THROUGH THISHowever, it was just as the apostle Peter said, which could be applied to the Jews of his day as well. He wrote, “the untaught and unstable distort, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures, to their own destruction.” (2 Pet 3:16) The Jews of Jesus and Peter’s day distorted the Scriptures. Because the Mosaic Law, did not free them from sin and declare them righteous, but rather it condemned them as sinners and as being accountable, answerable, and liable to God for punishment for sins. The Jews of the first-century were sinners like all the rest of the world and their sanctimonious words could not brag of self-righteousness. By that Mosaic Law and the ten great commandments that it contains, we get an accurate knowledge that we are, not self-righteous, but rather sinners unable to help ourselves. “Now we know,” says the apostle Paul, “that whatever the Law says, it speaks to those who are under the Law, so that every mouth may be closed and all the world may become accountable to God; because by the works of law no flesh will be justified in his sight; for by law comes the accurate knowledge of sin.” – Romans 3:19-20.

John 3.16_05Thus, we ask, how is it that all the world are slaves of sin and in the bondage of corruption? It is not because the material creation of the universes, earth, and humans are evil, corrupt, or bad in and of itself. It is not because our Creator made Adam and Eve evil from the beginning. This is impossible because the Father, our God, is not the source of sin, human imperfection, and corruption. The fault lies with us, humanity, and not with God. (Deut. 32:4-5; Eccl. 7:29) God’s Word tells us that Adam and Eve were made perfect, placed in the Garden of Eden, where they were commanded to produce children that would have been perfect, which were to fill the earth with more perfect children. However, before Adam and Eve had any children, they joined Satan the Devil in his rebellion and thus became sinners against their Father, Creator, and Lawgiver. It was by their free-willed actions that they became slaves to sin and were driven out of the paradise Garden of Eden into the uncultivated, unsubdued earth. Because they were now slaves of sin, they were unable to produce perfect, righteous children. Hence all of the descendants of Adam and Eve, including the self-righteous Jewish religious leaders of Jesus’ day, and us today were born as slaves into sin. Therefore, from our birth, we were imperfect and subject to sin and corruption. We were also born into this imperfect wick world of humanity, who has Satan the Devil as their god. Subsequently, we were born subject to the influences of his power. – Genesis 1:26-28; 2:7-8; 2 Corinthians 4:3-4.

[1] Epignosis is a strengthened or intensified form of gnosis (epi, meaning “additional”), meaning, “true,” “real,” “full,” “complete” or “accurate,” depending upon the context. Paul and Peter alone use epignosis.