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The Difference between Sins & Iniquity

Sins are never called mysterious. If someone lies, steals, fornicates, or physically assaults someone it requires only an explanation. But iniquity is mysterious because of the long tendrils of corruption and change it brings about to not just individuals, but families and even societies. If a drunk plows into a school bus killing five children he is sentenced by the court for manslaughter. That is sin and the law defines sins; the law does not define or punish iniquity. Iniquity is God’s word for what happens next, the ripples on the water after a sin is thrown in history.

Iniquity Defined

https://www.biblegateway.com/verse/en/2%20Thessalonians%202:7

  • Sins, violations of the laws of God, whether we know them or not.
  • Sin, the innate propensity of man to commit sins.
  • Iniquity, the damage done resulting from others’ sins.

Iniquities are the collateral damage done by sinners to the innocents. In addition to five dead children there are five broken families – the parents, grandparents teachers, classmates, siblings and neighbors – all affected in some way by these deaths, lives that will never be the same. Good may come out of it or evil; many couples who suffer the loss of a child also later divorce. The judge may decide to come down harder on drunk drivers. The drunk’s family experiences changes as well as he is no longer a proper breadwinner or his jail time forces the family on welfare. The judge may be overindulgent and allow him back on the road to cause another crime with the long trail of damaged lives once again. Taxes increase to cover increases in criminal prosecutions.

All Sin has Consequences

It will have an effect of some kind for generations and because those effects are not easily recognized they can be called the mysteries of iniquity. There are few visible signs of iniquities in our world. We have evidence of the good that individuals do. Consider the family of Billy Graham with millions worldwide being blessed and his family following him in productive ministry. God blesses us for the good we do, but those hidden iniquities are still on his books, still making a difference in unseen ways.

Consequences may not show up for a generation

Iniquity is the personal result of a long line of self-indulged sins because sin is not static in one’s life. Sin is like formaldehyde which is used to preserve tissue and cadavers, that is human bodies, from decay. So the sin repeatedly over time locks in the evil in the person making it harder for him (her) to change. Decades of excusing oneself and justifying the behavior hardens the heart and reduces the desire for repentance.

Genes show up in families. The Bach musicians are famous; there are 3 and 4 generations of men in jail, and their girls too, like red hair showing up consistently in the Irish and straight black hair in the Chinese. Like father, like son. Families of doctors or teachers. So we should not be surprised if those same sins pop up in the families of those who are careless about their moral lives. You can rightfully call it a reason but not an excuse.

You cannot call it a real gene however.Attempts to locate a “gay gene have failed. Those family failures are iniquity in action.

Humans do not see their own evil nature

For some reason human beings are not able to see the extent of their behavior, their sins. I sat silently as an old woman “apologized” to her adult daughter for being “too hard” on her as a child. Those words are in quotes because it was hardly an apology and what she did was criminal, drunken beatings and an attempt to kill her. I was a counselor for 7 years and only realized later that so much of what I was hearing was superficial, like this confession, a half-hearted attempt at “getting right with God” but merely inching towards God when hoping God accepts one’s peccadilloes as a gross violation of eternal moral standards for which one must eventually answer to God. Could this woman not see the extent of her sin, or was it so hard, she could not bear it?

Ultimately all change is internal.

Counselors that don’t realize that truth must be internalized will be forever disappointed at their results. The ability of people to justify their sins is incalculable. An old man in Florida was charged with raping an 11-year old, then murdering her and burying her body in the back yard. His excuse? “She wanted me to rape her.” Where does this kind of mental poison come from? Even women who abort their children do not say, “The baby wanted me to kill him? or her? “

Sin is like a gene

Before we are too quick to congratulate ourselves on having not done this look at American society today where all kinds of evil behavior are glossed over, especially sexual adventures called “love” including child sexual trafficking, pornography and other hidden evils. Marches in city streets applaud the murder of babies in the womb calling it a health issue for women. Nonsense.

Child bearing has 10,000 years of success and is not a disease or a health issue, and even a child knows that. And then there is a wild protest when the public refuses to pay for the abortion. Not a word on why someone else should be asked to pay for you to kill your child. Silence about these sins and iniquities is also iniquity.

Headlines like these are all too common.

https://www.theepochtimes.com/idaho-lawmakers-seek-to-make-abortion-murder-within-the-state_2786538.html

The severity of the iniquity is determined by the level of the authority of the Doer. King David ordered a census in direct violation of the will of God. As a result many people died.

2 Samuel 24:10 

10 And David’s heart smote him after that he had numbered the people. And David said unto the Lord, I have sinned greatly in that I have done: and now, I beseech thee, O Lord, take away the iniquity of thy servant; for I have done very foolishly.

David was in charge of his kingdom and his underlings both in the government and society suffered loss. God gave David a choice of various punishments. David said these prescient words: “Let me not fall into the hands of man.” David knew that men would be harder on him than God.

In contrast when a small child steals an apple negative results are limited because his authority levels are so low involving only one child and one grocer. A “talking to” and a light spanking to remind the child of his sins is about all that is needed.

Sins>iniquity>deception>delusion>death

Sins lead to iniquity which leads to deception which leads to delusion. Only a deluded society would see anything legal about this, if we accept the basis of western law, that is the common law and the Holy Bible. If we accept lawlessness including a public and private anarchy, then this kind of behavior and thinking makes sense. But it also spells the death of a society. So when people say “I want to save my country” this is what they are talking about, the advancing iniquity of a society morally off the rails. That describes today.


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