Lessons In Truth - Lesson 11 - Annotation 3
Is God willing to grant to all men deliverance from sin?
3. Yes, God is willing to grant to all men deliverance from sin because His will of all good applies to each of us equally. He is our Father, and His love extends to everyone. The feeling that good is for us, that God can and will deliver us from sin, is, as our text points out , "a God-given desire, and a God-given right" (Emilie Cady Lessons In Truth 11:4). God, being,the source of good, can only will good for His children, for we read in Hab. 1:13 "Thou that art of purer eyes than to behold evil."
Sin is the failure, ignorantly or deliberately, to recognize and apply divine law -- the law of Absolute Good. Negative problems are the unhappy results we experience by going contrary to God's laws of life. According to Webster's dictionary the word sin means "transgression of the law of God; disobedience to the divine will." It has been said that the word originally had reference to the "falling short" of a target, of the bull's-eye. As we view it today, sin does mean the "falling short" of God's standard of good. From a moral standpoint man has termed many things as "sin." He has omitted to see that other acts he has not put in this category are also actually disobedience to God's law. Seeing himself as merely flesh and blood, limited to time, condition, and space, thus ignoring his divine origin, is sin. Thinking of sin, sickness, death, and poverty as being realities and himself subject to them also is sinning.
The first annotation in Lesson One points out that the primary cause of our suffering is our being unaware that we are spiritual beings. This attitude of mind causes us to think, feel, speak, and act contrary to our true nature, thus bringing about conditions that cause suffering. This same cause is also the primary source of sin because sin results from the wrong use of our mental powers, which is disobedience to God's laws. When we think that we are separate from God, we have no real goal for which to aim. Until we come to know "Christ in you, the hope of glory" (Col. 1:27) we continue "falling short" of perfection.
As we have already said, God, being Absolute Good, can only will good for His creation. The principle of mathematics does not "grant" deliverance from our mistakes but has already provided methods for obtaining the right answers. Therefore, in one sense, God does not have to grant deliverance from sin because He has already provided a way that is free from sin. This "Way" is the Christ, or I AM, in each of us. As a further testimony of God's love for man, Jesus Christ came as a living example to teach us this "Way." Jesus, as our Way-Shower (as brought out in Lessons In Truth Lesson 4 Annotation 2) proved God's power to deliver from sin and suffering by healing the sick and raising the dead. If doing this had been contrary to God's laws, Jesus would never have done His mighty works of deliverance from the results of ignorance and disobedience to these laws.
To be delivered from sin ("falling short" of God's standard of good) we must each accept the truth of our own true nature, the Christ, the I AM, within. Then we must begin to act as a son of God, letting go of all that causes us to sin.
Preceding Entry: Do our difficulties sometimes result in good to us?
Following Entry: Name the spiritual gifts enumerated by Paul in I Cor. 12:4-10 and explain each briefly. Is healing the greatest gift?