How Did the World Get So Messed Up?
Not everything in the world is good. Not everything in the world is happy. Not everything in the world is beautiful. In fact, real evil does exist in the world. You can pick up any kind of newspaper, and if you start going through it, you're going to find—in the international section—terrorism and war and genocide. If you go through the national section, you're going to find political payoffs and lies and scams and churches set on fire. If you go through the local section, you're going to find rapes and abuse and murder and arson. If you go through the business section, you're going to find scandals, fraud, and graft embezzlement. If you go through the sports section, you're going to find drug use, illegal gambling, and adultery. If you go through the entertainment section, you're going to find too many scandals and sins to even mention. No rational person can deny that evil—real evil—exists in this world.
Sin is the reason for evil in the world.
How did the world get so messed up? The reason is this: we've all sinned, and when we sin, it brings evil into the world.
Sin is any attitude or action against God. Where did sin start? It started with the very first couple, Adam and Eve, back in the Garden of Eden. In fact, the Bible says: "Sin came into the world because of what one man did [that's Adam], and with sin came death." There was no death prior to Adam's sin; it came into the world with sin.
But sin didn't just stop with Adam and Eve. We've all been culprits, too. There is not a single person in all the earth who is always good and never sins. I've never met anybody who's claimed to be perfect. I don't measure up to my own standards, much less a perfect God's. I disappoint myself. I disappoint ...
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Rick Warren is pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, California, and author of The Purpose-Driven Life (Zondervan, 2002).