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Sin: What Is It, Really? "Throw the Bums Out" (Sin as Corruption) - Matt Herndon

May 15, 2022


  • Matt's Prayer: Lord, show me the extent and depth of my sin / so that I may understand the necessity of Jesus' sacrifice / and the breadth of your gracious love.
  • Sin as "Corruption"
  • Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
  • Everybody hates corrupt politicians. But we're the corrupt people who keep sending them there

“Corrupt” in the Bible

  • “Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight and was full of violence. God saw how corrupt the earth had become, for all the people on earth had corrupted their ways” (6:11).
  • “Everyone has turned away, all have become corrupt; there is no one who does good, not even one” (Ps. 53:3).
  • “’And God told Moses, ‘Go down from here at once, because your people whom you brought out of Egypt have become corrupt. They have turned away quickly from what I commanded them and have made an idol for themselves” (Deut. 9:12).
  • To corrupt = to destroy the integrity of something; to alter it for the worse. Perverse / deviate / decay
  • “all creation is…subject to corruption” (ESV Rom. 8:8).

#1: The Cause of Corruption

  • Adam and Eve had something to do with it.
  • But it's mostly our fault. It happens very slowly.
  • “Watch yourselves very carefully, so that you do not become corrupt” (Deut. 4:16).
  • The cause of our corruption is our own godlessness: “The fool says in his heart, ‘There is no God.’ They are corrupt, and their ways are vile” (Ps. 53:1).

#2: The Consequences of Corruption

  • Corruption leads to more corruption.
  • “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap corruption” (Gal. 6:7-8). When we live corruptly, we behave more corruptly.
  • And our corruption flows down. "Generational sin" takes place when our corruption influences the lives who come after us.
  • Corruption leads to death: spiritual and physical death: “They are like sheep and are destined to die…Their forms will decay in the grave, far from their princely mansions” (Ps. 49:14).

#3: The Cure of Corruption

  • How do you cure government corruption? Transparency and Accountability.
  • Sunshine Laws / Freedom of Information Act - Rep. John Ross.
  • This only works if we care about corruption, but we kind of don't.
  • God does, though. So he sends preachers and apostles: “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation!” (Acts 2:40). 
  • “Repent and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins” (Acts 2:38).
  • Throw the bums out! But what if...we're the bums?
  • Jesus took the punishment that we deserve.


  • “Everyone ought to examine themselves before they eat of the bread and drink from the cup” (1 Cor. 11:28). (over fuzzy picture)