Sin corrupts the human heart, yes. But sin is also systemic. Sin corrupts institutions and cultures. We can observe it in oppressive structures like patriarchy. Yet it is so pervasive that often we are completely oblivious to our participation. Alternatively, we may be aware of systemic sin and simply choose to deny, deflect or justify the abuse of power and privilege we see. Only someone who is very privileged, very empathetic, and very powerful can save us.

As products of our society, we need to be aware of how we may be affected by cultural and systemic sins.

What is Systemic Sin?

“It is true that sin affects the heart of every human being. It is true. But that is not the only thing you can say about sin. Sin is able to affect institutions, peoples and cultures. Amen! And so, what we are going to see in this sermon is the reality of how systemic sin affects all of us. Because it affects us also in this city (Lagos). And if we are to develop properly as human beings, remember, because there are about 5 different ways we can do that, we need to also see that we – as products of our society – we need to be aware of how we may be affected by the cultural and systemic sins.

“I want to show you how you can identify systemic sin through three equations:

1. Privilege plus sin is equal to oppression.

2. Oppression plus people equals an oppressive culture.

And 3. An oppressive culture plus time equals systemic sin.

Alright? Now, this equation is at work in the familiar story of slavery in Egypt that Faye read to us (Exodus 1:8-22). Indeed, it is at work in all cases of systemic sin.”

Identifying, Opposing & Defeating Systemic Sin

“This sermon is going to show us how we can identify such sins, fight their existence and fight their existence without having them affect us and do so through the gospel. I should say this is not meant to be a comfortable sermon! So, let us go through it. We have titled it sin is systemic and there are 3 points. Identifying systemic sin. Opposing systemic sin. And then defeating it.”

To Defeat Sin, We Must Understand It

We will only begin to be victorious when we understand the essence of sin and fight it from its roots

Are you tired of constantly being defeated by sin? Are you surprised that it somehow always keeps getting victory over you? This is because we never fully understand sin and therefore underestimate it. Combating sin is crucial for Christian growth and we will only begin to be victorious when we understand the essence of sin and fight it from its roots.

This is the second in a five-part sermon series where we consider the biblical description of sin and learn how to be victorious over it. Pick up the other sermons here: 1. The Anatomy of Sin – The Essence; 2. Sin is Systemic; 3. Sin Hardens Your Heart; 4. Sin Blinds You

Text: Exodus 1:8-22

Preached: 26 January 2020

Location: City Church, Lagos, Nigeria