C. The social dimensions of sins must not be neglected by
we view the personification of evil as THE
DEVIL and the inborn personal depravity as THE FLESH, then the corporate social dimension of sin can be
described as THE WORLD.
World is a spiritual force that works against the Kingdom of God.
1. The world as a whole organized system of
spiritual force is a fact.
Cor.7:10 “worldly grief produces death”
2. The world is under Satan’s control.
“once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the
power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience.”
Jn.5:19 “the whole world is in the power of the evil one.”
3. The world is clearly evil.
“The world . . . hates me because I testify of it that its works are evil.”
4. The world stands in opposition to the people
“If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If
you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of
the world, but I chose you out of he world, therefore the world hates you.”
Cor.1:21,27 “The things of God are foolish to the world.”
• I Cor.2:12
“Now we have recieved not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit which is from
“the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot recieve, because it neither sees
him nor knows him;”
5. Powerful as are the world’s system and ruler,
they are doomed.
Cor.6:2 Believers will someday judge the world.
“I have overcome the world.”
“Now is the judgment of this world, now shall the ruler of this world be cast
out.” - vs.32-33 speak of the cross.
and Powers are elemental spirits of institutions and social structures in
the world that are corrupted by the fall. Col.2 is a key chapter.
1. Paul distinguished “powers” from
“principalities” and from “angels” in Rom.8:38-39
2. Paul refers to “elemental spirits” in
describes the principalities and powers as having control of persons.
4. Christ is said to have disarmed the powers,
made a public example of them, and triumphed over them. Gal.3:1-5; I
2. Social sins often go unclaimed by
a. People feel that they do not have an active
choice in corporate sins.
b. People’s group identity can shape their world view so
as to render them insensitive to social injustices.
c. People fail to see that group selfishness may
involve individual unselfishness.
d. There is a tendency to “group think” so as to
lose sight of our weaknesses.
e. The further removed we are from the actual
evil, the less real it seems.
3. We are not the only people responsible for some
of our sins.
a. Lk.17:1-4; Matt.18:6-7 suggest that we can
cause another to stumble.
responsibility of the stronger brother in I Cor.8 suggests that he will bear
responsibility for the sins of those that they lead astray by example.
Teachers are warned in
Jas.3:1 that their judgment is strict because of their influence over others.
In I Cor.15:33 we read
that the choices we make with respect to the company we keep can result in
putting us in harms way, causing us to sin.
Tim.5:22 “Do not lay hands upon any one too hastily and thus share responsibility for the sins of
How should we view the
results of sin?
Just as Jesus’ healing ministry was a sign of his authority and God’s
compassion so our commitment to social reform is but a sign of the Kingdom of
God and His love. It is not assumed that education, economic justice,
psychological therapy, and political reform will solve the sin problem.
will never out grow our need for grace. Our condition is far worse than we can
fathom and God’s grace is far more powerful than we could imagine.
Christians have the ability, more than anyone else, to understand the
highest aspirations of humanity and to empathize with the deepest pains of
human experience. This is because we understand the nature of man’s dignity and
Questions that you should be able to answer.
1. Specific facts you should know.
a. What is
the meaning of death?
texts of Scripture express the results of sin?
2. Issues that you should be able to discuss.
a. How is
corporate sin to be understood?
b. What are
some of the social dimensions of sin?
should Christians expect to impact society?
d. How are
we convicted of sin?
3. Questions you should wrestle with.
a. What constitutes
proper legislation with regard to social injustice?
deeply committed should a believer be to social reform? What are some of the
wise and unwise expressions of social concern?
political conservatives more enlightened with respect to social reform than
Fr. Tadros Malaty