aka “Not being righteous”


That is …

1.   Not doing the right thing by God’s ten commandments (Ex 20:1-17)

2.   Not doing the right thing by your own standards (James 4:17)

 DEFINITION #1 Not doing the right thing by God’s ten commandments that is 100% on the number 1 of God’s 10 Commandments, 100% on number 2 and so on. The following table outlines God’s Ten Commandments:


Ten Commandments

Number 1

I am the LORD thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. Thou shalt have no other gods before me. Ex 20:2-3

Number 2

Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image Ex 20:4

Number 3

Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain Ex 20:5

Number 4

Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Ex 20:8

Number 5

Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee. Ex 20:12

Number 6

Thou shalt not kill. Ex 20:13

Number 7

Thou shalt not commit adultery. Ex 20:14

Number 8

Thou shalt not steal Ex 20:15

Number 9

Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.  Ex 20:16

Number 10

Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour's. Ex 20:17

Failure on any of these negates the whole lot.
Put it this way:
As it is written
For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all. James 2:10

For example “Well, I have not killed anybody!” but have you wanted to in the mind? That is a failure on Number 6.
Maybe you haven’t killed anybody (even in your mind) and that would mean you get 100% on this commandment.
However, when it comes to adultery, although you haven’t done the actual deed, you have thought about it. Maybe this gives you a 90% pass rate in your eyes … but in God’s eyes you get zero.
This still means you are going to the literal fires of hell – you have failed to get 100% on not committing adultery.

Number 1 – 100%
Number 2 – 100%
Number 3 – 100%
Number 4 – 100%
Number 5 – 100%
Number 6 – 100%
Number 7 – 100%
Number 8 – 100%
Number 9 – 100%
Number 10 – 99.999999999999999999999999999%


This means you must have perfect fulfillment on all aspects of every commandment to stay out of hell.

This definition of sin is also known as …

Violating your own conscience/letting yourself down/not doing your best/letting your team mates down/having to turn over a new leaf/get your life straightened out/knowing right from wrong/”I’m not as bad as some”/making New Year’s resolutions/knowing the right thing to do but not doing it … and so on.
The scriptures say

Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin. James 4:17

You actually convict yourself … you haven’t been “the best you”. 
The world soft peddles the word “sin” with the phrases “You’ve let yourself down” or “You’ve let others down” or “You’re not perfect … who is?” and so on.

You see, God won’t let anyone off the hook.

You have been given the EXTERNAL definition of sin as written in the Ten Commandments
You have been given the INTERNAL definition of sin from your own conscience.

That was the true Light, which lighteth EVERY man that cometh into the world. John 1:9
Everyone knows right from wrong … because there are no excuses.

So Dear Reader, next time you hear someone say “Oh, I’m not a sinner” or “I’m not as bad as some” … you’ll know how to answer them.

**** ****

Harley Hitchcock


 Australian Bible Ministries, PO Box 5058 Mt. Gravatt East 4122 Qld, Australia