What is sin, and why does it matter? Growing up Laestadian, how we saw sin affected how we saw God, and each other. This short video outlines some of the ways sin has been defined in the past, and presents a different way of conceptualizing sin based on Kathryn Tanner's 2001 work, Jesus, Humanity, and the Trinity: A Systematic Theology.
Sin as breaking the rules/laws. Drawback: encourages us to see God primarily as a judge or lawgiver; prone to abuse when hijacked by power-hungry authority figures. See also Luke 12:14, where Jesus seems to reject being set up as a judge.
Sin as separation from God. Drawback: if we believe that God truly is everywhere, how can we ever be truly separated from God?
Sin as pride. While a longstanding Christian view of sin (400-1950 A.D.), how can this apply to people who are downtrodden, depressed, or in unhealthy co-dependent relationships?
Sin as "blockage." This is Tanner's view. It conceptualizes sin as analogous to the blockage in an artery. As such a blockage stops the flow of lifegiving blood to the body, so sin "is the blocking of the abundant flow of God's gifts, to ourselves and to others."
What do you think? I think that the Laestadian tradition focused on sin in an often counterproductive way, focusing too much on sin as rule-breaking and pride, throwing up unnecessary stumbling blocks for some, while giving a pass to some very destructive behaviors if they were "repented" of for others.