RE:QUESTA space for resources to help RE teachers and their students explore the Christian faith
Lat Blaylock, Editor, RE Today
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Crime and Sin: What's the Difference?
It can be very confusing when coming across the concepts of sin and crime. At first glance, they appear to be one and the same thing, however, there are key differences.
A crime is an act against the laws of the government.
A sin is an act against the laws of God.
A crime will always be a sin because to break the law - regardless of what it is you've done - is not acceptable to Christians. The Bible states:
'Obey the government, for God, is the One who has put it there. There is no government anywhere that God has not placed in power. So those who refuse to obey the law of the land are refusing to obey God, and punishment will follow.' Romans 13:1-2
However, a sin is not always a crime. For example, the Bible condemns adultery, and Christians view it as a sin, however, it is not a crime in the UK. Nobody will be arrested if they commit adultery.
Christians believe that sin is something that everyone is born with; it is part of human nature. When God created the world, Adam and Eve, who were the first humans, disobeyed God by eating the tree from the forbidden tree. The Bible says: 'All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.' Romans 3:23