Sin is Bad for Your Mental Health

Sin is Bad for Your Mental Health by PETER AIELLO for Charisma News

The immediate effects of the Fall of Adam and Eve were shame, guilt, and fear. They were blindsided by its effects. The knowledge of good and evil did not end up in the way that they had expected. This event established the mental health conditions for their future generations that include us. Paul calls this the law of sin and characterizes us as wretched because of it.[1] This is true in spite of outward appearances.[2]

Paul tells us: “I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: everywhere and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.”[3] This statement expresses the core of what Jesus accomplished for us on the cross. His Spirit within us now gives us a sustained peace and strength that is not dependent upon the outward circumstances of our lives. When our contentment in life depends upon the condition of our outward circumstances, contentment will always be temporary because they will change. When our contentment is not dependent on them, but comes from God, it is ongoing.

Also, we cannot get enough of the things that we desire in order to arrive at a place of ongoing contentment. We will always seek more without ever arriving. This is why the Bible describes lusts as deceitful. They are deceitful: but also corrupting.[4] James cautions us that the Holy Spirit will not compete with the things of this world for our attention. Grace and exaltation come to us through humility toward God and not by lusting for the things of this world. They cancel each other out. When we cast all of our care on God, we are also casting away all of our lust attachments to the things of the world and all of the stress and anxiety associated with these attachments. Much of the unhappiness in this world results from pursuing things that we believe will make us happy; but, in the end, do not. Our contentment keeps getting postponed.

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We need to recognize the mental health aspects of Biblical spirituality. This is basic in Scripture. Peace and strength from God would deal with the majority of the mental issues that we may have. Being anxious for nothing by casting all of our care on God would deal with stress and anxiety in our lives along with our excessive attachment to things. Resorting to this trust in God at all times is the best way to remain abiding in Christ and in His peace.

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