Monday, March 24, 2008

"Sin" and "Repentance"


Our heavenly Father/Mother is Love, purest Love. She/He delights in forgiving us. Unlike the grumpy old Jehovah, the "Father of the All" is eager to forgive. He can hardly wait to forgive!

So, we need not grovel before Him, and we need not "repent" in sackcloth and ashes, as the ancients did with their god.

But, to keep our karmic record as clear and stainless as it is possible for a human being to do, "repentance" is a good idea.

Repentance is an attitude, a way of viewing your "sins." Most sins are indeliberate, but even though these create zero karma, we still want to feel sincerely sorry for any way in which we have ever hurt ourselves or anyone else. This takes an attitude of humility and realistic assessment.

We also must be completely honest. If we ignore, try to hide, our sins, or pretend that they simply do not exist, we are committing an even worse
error-- lying, to ourselves, and perhaps, to others.

Still, let us recognize that "sin" is not a commitment to "evil." It is more like a "processing error" in cybertech. The ancient Greek word used in the Christian Scriptures verifies this. It is a word from archery, and means "missing the target." Archers do not miss a target because they are "bad" or "evil," but because of imperfection; they are truly trying to hit the bull's eye. So, "sin" is error or mistake, not voluntary rebellion against the good. When a computer or other cyberdevice makes an error, we do not sledge-hammer it into bits and then toss it away! No, instead, we use reason and patience, and seek to repair it; computers are worth a lot!

You are worth a zillion times as much as any cyberdevice. God treasures you infinitely. That is why it is His pleasure and delight to forgive.
There is no sin greater than the Power of God's grace to forgive; to suggest that there is, is simple and sheer blasphemy! We see this unlimited forgiveness all the time in the ministry of Jesus. While the selfrighteous and religious people looked down snobbishly on "sinners," Jesus ate and drank with them on a regular enough basis that it became a scandal. And he often forgave a person on the spot! One woman whom he forgave instantly was even caught in the act of fornication! Now, as sins go, this is quite a serious one, and it has always received special attention and consideration from the old men who judged. (They needed to get lives!:)

Jesus' attitude was one of infinite and unlimited forgiveness. He told us to imitate God, and to forgive our brother "seventy times seven"-- a number that, numerologically, represents the unlimited state of infinity.

Our forgiveness should have no limits. For, he warned, we are forgiven only as we forgive others. (Mt. 6:12) He prophesied, in fact, that all sins, no matter how serious, would be forgiven. (Mk. 3:28).

So, if we are repentant, the Lord of Love joyfully releases us from the terrible bondage to sin. "Sin" is any action that deliberately harms any living creature, including yourself. The only attitude of a kind, good, just person is "repentance," or sorrowful regret and remorse for any sin.

Free and enlightened people do not believe in guilt, which is simple selftorment, a selfcreated hellstate. It is the service of fear, Love's conceptual opposite; so it is the service to the lower nature. But we do believe in the wisdom of repentance. (If the repentance is genuine, it will include not only remorse, but recompense; we must do all that we can to "undo" whatever damage that we have done.)

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