A fascinating thing about sin the Bible is that most of the time that people are failing, they either don’t know it or even worse, they think they’re succeeding. Like when Pharaoh wants to build Egypt’s economy and protect national security in his mind, this justifies enslaving the Israelites, he thinks it’s good, and he’s totally unaware that it’s an epic fail. So sin is about more than just doing bad things because they are bad. It describes how we easily deceive ourselves we can become and spin illusions to redefine our bad decisions as good ones. The Bible is trying to tell us that failed human behavior, our tendency towards self-deception, it runs deep. It’s rooted in our desires for more and selfish urges that compel us to act for our own benefit at the expense of others. And that leads to this chain reaction of relational breakdown. This is why in the New Testament, the Apostle Paul describes hamartia as a power or a force that rules humans.
ha·mar·ti·a: a fatal flaw leading to the downfall of a tragic hero
“Every one of our sinful actions has a SUICIDAL power on the faculties that put that action forth. When you sin with the mind, that sin shrivels the rationality. When you sin with the heart or the emotions, that sin shrivels the emotions. When you sin with the will, that sin destroys and dissolves your willpower and your self-control. Sin is the suicidal action of the self against itself. Sin destroys freedom because sin is an enslaving power.” Timothy Keller