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Overlooked Sins

Rev. Margaret Minnicks is an ordained Bible teacher. She writes many articles that are Bible lessons.


For such a small word, a lot is packed into the meaning of sin. The Bible describes sin as the breaking, or transgression, of God's law. (1 John 3:4) It is also defined as disobedience or rebellion against God (Deuteronomy 9:7), as well as independence from God. The original translation means "to miss the mark" of God's holy standard of righteousness.

Simply put, sin is doing those things God told us NOT to do and NOT doing those things He told us to do. Some refer to doing something we shouldn’t as the sin of commission and not doing something we should do as the sin of omission. James 4:17 says, “So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.”

Complacency: Is Complacency a Sin?

Complacency is defined as being satisfied with the status quo no matter how bad it is. Complacency is accepting evil when it should be replaced with good. Complacency is keeping silent when speaking out the truth is the practical thing to do. Complacency can be summarized as being content and indifferent in the midst of moral chaos.

According to the minor prophet Zephaniah, God would search the city with lamps and punish those who were complacent. Sin matters to God, and it should matter to us as well.

What can you do about complacency? First of all, admit that you are complacent. You can't change what you don't acknowledge. There might be many things you are complacent about, but seek God about the area that He wants you to work on first. Hear God's voice. Then obey God's voice.

Laziness: Is Laziness a Sin?

Laziness is inactivity, idleness, or refusal to work. The Bible has a lot to say about laziness and none of it is complimentary. In fact, the Bible condemns laziness.

It is not just the laziness that's a sin. Laziness invites other sins including procrastination, complacency, and refusing to do what is right. Laziness results in passivity. More than likely, a lazy person is not lazy in only one area. A lazy person is probably lazy across the board . . . lazy in work, lazy in love, lazy in fun, and lazy in serving God.

Laziness is a sin and must be dealt with just as any other sin. The quickest way to rid laziness from your life is to begin doing something constructive. The more you work, the more you will become accustomed to working, and the laziness will soon depart.


Gluttony: Is Gluttony a Sin?

Gluttony is the sin usually associated with overeating and overindulgence in alcohol. Please know that gluttony is not limited to just overeating or over drinking. Gluttony could be an overindulgence in anything... sex, shopping, watching sports, television, computer (Proverbs 23:21, Deuteronomy 21:20, Matthew 11:19).

Greed is related to gluttony. Greed is simply the accumulation of too much stuff. The sin of greed could develop in the sickness of hoarding.

Hypocrisy: Is Being a Hypocrite a Sin?

Hypocrisy is pretending to be what one is not. The Greek word for “hypocrite” means “playing a part.” In the Greek plays, it was acceptable to pretend to be someone else by imitating their speech, mannerism, and character. However, when you deliberately pretend to be someone else when you are not in a drama, well then you are a hypocrite.

Jesus had a lot to say about hypocrites especially the Pharisees who opposed Him. He said several times in the gospel of Matthew, “Woe, you hypocrites! Then he went on to remind them of what they were doing. They paraded their charitable deeds. They prayed and fasted publicly to win the praise of men (Matthew 6:1-2, 5, 16). They sought to give the appearance of being godly, but they were actually blind to the truth of God.

Jealousy: Is Jealousy a Sin?

Jealousy is the umbrella under which envy and covetousness fall. Being jealous is the general act of wishing you had what someone else had, but it could escalate into the burning desire of covetousness or the attitude of resentment of envy.

Covetousness is closely akin to jealousy. Covetousness is an intense desire to possess something that belongs to another person. “Thy shall not covet” is one of the Ten Commandments. Covetousness is having a burning desire for what someone else has whereby envy is resenting the person for having it.

Envy is a feeling of resentment toward another person because of his possessions or good qualities. The Bible warns us in Romans 13:13 and I Peter 2:1 to guard against the sin of envy. Covetousness (the desire) leads to envy (the attitude of resentment).


Gossip: Is Gossip a Sin?

Gossip is the sin of spreading rumors or fruitless tales. Paul described some of the early believers as “not only idle but gossipers (1 Timothy 5:13). Jesus said, “For every idle word men may speak, they will give account for it in the day of judgment” (Matthew 12:36).

The person who listens to gossip is held more accountable than the person who is telling it. When you listen, it encourages the one who is gossiping to continue. If no one listened, the gossiping would stop. Also, when you hear gossip, it gets down into your spirit and affects your relationship with the person being gossiped about. To be on the safe side, do not gossip, and do not listen to gossip.

Listening to gossip gives it the power to continue. If we refuse to listen to gossip, it would die instantly. But to listen to gossip is to help stab a person with a sharp-edged sword. It is said that gossip kills three: the person who speaks it, the person who hears it, and the person about whom it is told. Let's stop killing people with our mouths and with our ears!


Procrastination: Is Proscrastion a Sin?

Procrastination is deliberating delaying doing what needs to be done. The definition does not mean that you don't ever do what you are supposed to it. It is that you do it, but you don't do it on time or you do it at the last minute. Filing one's income taxes is a very good example. Some people wait until the last minute or they get an extension.

Procrastination is a sin itself because one should not make it a habit of putting off what needs to be done when it needs to be done. Besides, procrastination is related to other sins. For instance, it is the result of laziness.


For each question, choose the best answer. The answer key is below.

  1. What is the sin of overeating?
    • Gossiping
    • Gluttony
    • Procrastinating
  2. What is the sin of delaying what you know you should do?
    • Gossiping
    • Being Jealous
    • Procrastinating
  3. What is the sin of being satisfied with the status quo?
    • Hypocrisy
    • Procrasticating
    • Complacency
  4. What is the sin of spreading rumors about someone?
    • Gluttony
    • Hypocrisy
    • Gossip
  5. What is the sin of pretending you are something you are not?
    • Hypocrisy
    • Gossip
    • Jealousy

Answer Key

  1. Gluttony
  2. Procrastinating
  3. Complacency
  4. Gossip
  5. Hypocrisy

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