RE: What is the opposite of Sin? page 4
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In order to arrive at a suitable antonym for the word “sin”, one must understand the word as it is correctly used in the English language. This explanation will address the meaning of sin and its antonym in an attempt to assist in gaining a more thorough understanding.
As a verb, sin is the act of missing the mark, falling short, or transgressing the law. As a noun, sin is the state of being off the mark, fallen, or out of accordance with the law. The opposite act of sin is reaching the mark and acting in accordance with the law. For clarity, one must know what the intended mark is, what is being fallen short of, and what law is being transgressed by sin. Another simple definition of sin is estrangement from God. In this case, the mark is what God intends one to achieve. Sin is falling short, or going against the law of God.
A single word meaning the opposite of sin may be used in noun form or as a verb to denote the opposite state or act of sin. The most specific antonym of sin is the noun godliness. As a verb, obey is probably the most accurate antonym of sin, but this word used by itself lacks association with anything specific, as one could “obey the law of sin”. A single word to denote the act of keeping the law of God is hard to find. Examples of these antonyms in sentence form may be, “I would rather live in godliness than die in sin”, or “I strive not to sin, but to obey God.” Notice the noun use of godliness is more descriptive, but the verb use of obey relies on the noun “God” to convey its full meaning.
One could attempt to remove the word “God” from the second example, but the meaning of sin and its antonym would become vague. Likewise, nouns such as “obedience” are not specific enough to convey full meaning. Even morality and virtue can be viewed as being relevant terms, albeit only by some. For a more complete understanding of sin and its antonym one must address the subject of good and evil. For an accurate understanding of good and evil, one must acknowledge the existence of an absolute point of reference in terms of morality. Otherwise, the entire concept of good and evil would be only relative and sin or its antonym would be ultimately meaningless.
God, in absolute terms, is the self-existent one, or the “I am that I am”. The Hebrew word for the self-existent one is YHWH, referred to as the name of God. Some ways people pronounce this name are Yahweh or Yahavah, but the meaning is what is significant. A shorter version of the name is Yah. In some dialects the ‘Y’ is pronounced as a ‘J’ sound, and ‘W’ as a ‘V’ sound and various vowels are inserted, such as in Jehovah, or Jah. Regardless of the word itself or name used, the existence of God is not dependent on any other. “God”, as the word is being used in this context, refers to the one that self-exists, or is absolute.
Godliness is the condition of obedience to God, or to be acting, speaking and thinking in accordance with God. Only God, as the absolute point of reference can determine what is good and what is evil. God is good, and goodness is that which is of God. Evil is that which opposes God, or that which is not in accordance with God. Sin puts one out of harmony with God. It is the act of going against God and finally puts one out of existence. Obedience keeps one in harmony with God and therefore in existence with God. It is actually simpler to consider that sin is the antonym of godliness rather than godliness being the antonym of sin.
In light of this explanation, the biblical statements that “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”, and “sin, when it is finished brings forth death”, make perfect sense. The Genesis account shows that humanity is in a fallen state, which puts the world in the deadly state of disharmony with God. Speaking of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, man is told by God, “In the day you eat of it, you shall surely die.” Naturally, mankind sins and their immediate reaction is to hide from God, in shame, attempting to cover themselves with fig leaves. The account reveals mankind’s inadequacy to remedy his own problem, so it continues to tell how God made coats of skin from animals to cover them. Someone had to die, and in this case the sacrifice was an animal. But mankind was still not in total harmony with God, they were simply covered for the time.
The only way one can be brought back into harmony with God or reconciled to God and made sinless is to be forgiven and made whole again, ultimately to be at one with God.
The self-existent one also has expression self. One’s expression can be called one’s “word”. In Greek, the word “logos” signifies expression or representation as a logo represents a company in modern usage. There is some very good news that the word of God has become manifest in human form, and is referred to as the “son” of God, since he came as a man from God and lived as the expression of God, representing God to mankind. He appeared to reveal attributes of God, such as character, and to make manifest the will of God, as a light to the world. He remained in obedience to God throughout his life and did not sin. Therefore, there would have been no consequence of death resulting from any of his actions. The self-existent one whose name is called YHWH was his father. And it was YHWH’s will to sacrifice his own son so that mankind could be reconciled to him, the only God, and saved from the death that was the consequence of sin.
“Yahshua” in Hebrew essentially means “YHWH saves”. Although some of the specifics are debatable, in English, Yahshua is pronounced Jesus. The man who came as the word of God in the flesh was also given by God as the perfect and complete sacrifice by which the sins of mankind would not merely be covered, but entirely removed, thus allowing full forgiveness, reconciliation, restoration, salvation, wholeness, harmony and being made at one with the self-existent God by whom all life is given.
But there is more good news. Not only was the son of God given as a sacrifice for sin, but he was brought back to life after being dead and buried for 3 days, then he ascended into heaven where he is currently with God, YHWH, his Father and serving as the mediator between God and mankind. Everything God says is true, and since Yahshua was and is the living word of God, his words are true. He promised to return to this Earth and the kingdom of God would be established over the entire world. There is a lot more to the good news, but his message was and is to repent, which means to turn away from sin, and believe in the good news, because the kingdom of God is at hand.
As previously mentioned, sin is the antonym of godliness, which puts one out of synch with God, or separates one from God and ultimately life. Therefore, the ultimate antonym of sin is not only in keeping with the law of God, but will eradicate sin and put one who has sinned in harmony with God and give eternal life. The ultimate antonym of sin is the expression of God through his son who was sacrificed for that purpose and resurrected from the dead to save those who believe and live according to this good news. In his own words he stated that eternal life is to know the only true God and his son, Yahshua the Messiah, whom God sent.
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As for starter ideas, I thought of the terms:
Benevolence vs Malevolence?
I'm partial to committing an act of benevolence versus committing an act of sin.
And using the terms in this discussion:
And finally, my personal favorite:
If you want a word that more closely fits in with the "english" psyche, why not use a bit of latin to create your own? No, you don't need to learn it: just look up prefixes and suffixes for the words good and action (in terms of a noun and then 'anglicize' it for verb form (or vice versa :-D) ), right? Good idea? Have a better one?
People are waiting to help.
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