Friday: Further Thought – The Human Condition

Further Thought: “Thus the biblical terminology shows that sin is not a calamity fallen upon the human unawares, but the result of an active attitude and choice on the part of the human. Further, sin is not the absence of good, but it is ‘falling short’ of God’s expectations. It is an evil course that the human has deliberately chosen.

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It is not a weakness for which humans cannot be held responsible, for the human in the attitude or act of sin deliberately chooses a way of rebellion against God, in transgression against His law, and fails to hear God’s Word. Sin attempts to pass beyond the limitations God has set. In short, sin is rebellion against God.”-The Handbook of Seventh-day Adventist Theology (Hagerstown, Md.: Review and Herald Publishing Association, 2000), p. 239.

“A terrible picture of the condition of the world has been presented before me. Immorality abounds everywhere. Licentiousness is the special sin of this age. Never did vice lift its deformed head with such boldness as now. The people seem to be benumbed, and the lovers of virtue and true goodness are nearly discouraged by its boldness, strength, and prevalence. The iniquity which abounds is not merely confined to the unbeliever and the scoffer. Would that this were the case, but it is not. Many men and women who profess the religion of Christ are guilty. Even some who profess to be looking for His appearing are no more prepared for that event than Satan himself. They are not cleansing themselves from all pollution. They have so long served their lust that it is natural for their thoughts to be impure and their imaginations corrupt.” – Ellen G. White, Testimonies for the Church, vol. 2, p. 346.

Discussion Questions:

  1. What answer do you give to those who, despite all that has happened, insist that humanity is improving? What arguments do they give, and how do you respond to them?
  2. Look at the quote from Ellen G. White in Friday’s study. If you see yourself in there, what is the answer? Why is it important not to give up in despair but to keep claiming God’s promises-first, of forgiveness; second, of cleansing? Who is the one who wants you to say once and for all, “It’s no use. I’m too corrupt. I can never be saved, so I might as well give up”? Do you listen to him or to Jesus, who will say to us, “Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more”? John 8:11.
  3. Why is it so important for us as Christians to understand basic human sinfulness and depravity? What can happen when we lose sight of that sad but true reality? What errors can a false understanding of our true condition lead us into?
  4. Think about the untold numbers of Protestants who chose to die rather than give up the faith. How strong are we in the faith? Strong enough to die for it?

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Source: Daily Sabbath School Lessons