To begin the new year, I want to spend a number of weeks looking at the doctrine of sin. Sin may not be a ‘politically correct’ subject in our culture, but as Christians we are called to be ‘Biblically correct’ and the Bible has quite a lot to say about sin. This week we’ll start looking at the origin of sin by answering the following question: ‘Is God the origin of sin?’

Now some of you may immediately ask, ‘How could you claim God is the origin of sin? Surely no-one believes that!’  But some claim that God logically must be the origin of sin because he is in control of all things.

However, thinking that God is the origin of sin is clearly refuted by the Bible. Revelation teaches us that there has never been a time when God has been and never will be unholy: ‘Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under his wings. Day and night they never stop saying: “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come.”’ (Revelation 4:8).  The Psalms also repeatedly teach that God has no sin in him: ‘The LORD is upright; he is my Rock, and there is no wickedness in him.’ (Psalm 92:16).  Furthermore, God hates sin even when it is being done by others: ‘You are not a God who takes pleasure in evil’ (Psalm 5:4).

But does this then mean that there is an evil god that is similar or equal to God who created sin in the world? No, there is no other god. God brought the Israelites out of Egypt to show them this truth: ‘You were shown these things so that you might know that the LORD is God; besides him there is no other.’ (Deuteronomy 4:35). God confirms it again through Isaiah the prophet: ‘Is there any God besides me? No, there is no other Rock; I know not one.’ (Isaiah 44:8).

Therefore despite what human logic may wish to say, the Bible affirms God’s sovereignty while condemning the notion that God is the origin of sin. Somehow God is able to be in sovereign control and allow sin to be present without being responsible for it. How? Scripture doesn’t really tell us. This sounds hard but it makes sense that a created human would not know how a great God can do everything he does. Somehow God can make the two truths fit and all we can do is trust his word. Either you trust human reason or you trust the Bible which is shown to be divinely reliable in so many areas. Which do you choose?

Joel Radford