I hate the word “sin.”
I’ve had this problem for a while. It is not because I am a theological pansy which hardliners like Mark Driscoll might think.
I have no problem with the concept. It’s the misuse of the word that I find unpalatable.
First, I want to unpack the Biblical meaning of the word. There are at least three words that I know of in Hebrew that convey the term we often deem “sin.”
- chata’ah – The word most commonly translated as “sin,” literally means something like “missing the mark.” My understanding is that it most commonly used in archery to express the idea that the shot missed the target.
- pesha – This word carries with it a certain high hand-ness. The word that gets translated is usually “transgression” which for modern Western readers is a fairly vague concept. The idea is that the offender willfully…
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