Turvydom, Where vice is virtue, virtue vice; Where nice is nasty, nasty nice; Where right is wrong, and wrong is right; Where white is black and black is white.?
(d) Like the sense-theory of sin, it contradicts both conscience and Scripture by denying human responsibility and by transferring the blame of sin from the creature to the Creator. This is to explain sin, again, by denying its existence.
(Edipus said that his evil deeds had been suffered, not done. Agamemnon, in the Thad, says the blame belongs, not to himself, but to Jupiter and to fate. So sin blames everything and everybody but self. ( <010312>Genesis 3:12 ? ?The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat.? But self-vindicating is God-accusing. Made imperfect at the start, man cannot help his sin. By the very fact of his creation he is cut loose from God. That cannot be sin, which is a necessary outgrowth of human nature, for it is not our act but our fate. To all this, the one answer is found in Conscience. Conscience testifies that sin is not ?das Gewordene? but ?das Gemachte? and that it was his own act when man, by transgression, fell. The Scriptures refer man?s sin , not to the limitations of his being, but to the free will of man himself. On the theory here combated, see Muller, Doct. Sin, 1:271-295; Philippi, Glaubenslehre, 3:123-131; N. H. Wood, The Witness of Sin, 20- ? 42.
We hold the essential principle of sin to be selfishness. By selfishness we mean not simply the exaggerated self-love which constitutes the antithesis of benevolence, but that choice of self as the supreme end which constitutes the antithesis of supreme love to God. That selfishness is the essence of sin may be shown as follows:
A. Love to God is the essence of all virtue. The opposite of this, the choice of self as the supreme end, must therefore be the essence of sin.
We are to remember, however, that the love to God in which virtue consists is a love for that which is most characteristic and fundamental in God, namely, his holiness. It is not to be confounded with supreme regard for God s interests or for the good of being in general not mere benevolence, but love for God as holy, is the principle and source of holiness in man. Since the love of God required by the law is of this sort, it not only does not imply that love, in the sense of benevolence, is the essence of holiness in God rather, it implies that holiness, or self-loving and
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