Articles, Home Groups

Belonging | The Doctrine of Sin

Jill Barlow

July 7, 2022

Break the ice. What is one of your favorite throwback songs we have sung this summer?

Read Genesis 3:1-7. 1 Now the serpent was the most cunning of all the wild animals that the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You can’t eat from any tree in the garden’?”2 The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat the fruit from the trees in the garden. 3 But about the fruit of the tree in the middle of the garden, God said, ‘You must not eat it or touch it, or you will die.’”

4 “No! You will certainly not die,” the serpent said to the woman. 5 “In fact, God knows that when you eat it your eyes will be opened and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” 6 The woman saw that the tree was good for food and delightful to look at, and that it was desirable for obtaining wisdom. So she took some of its fruit and ate it; she also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. 7 Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.

Discuss the fifth core, essential belief of Citizens Church: the doctrine of sin.

Through the temptation of Satan, humanity transgressed the command of God and fell from their original holiness and righteousness (Gen. 3). Now the entire human race inherits a corrupt nature that is opposed to God and His law (Rom. 3:9-20). Therefore, all humans are under condemnation. This depravity is radical and pervasive. It extends to the mind, will, body and affections. Unregenerate humanity lives under the dominion of sin and Satan (Eph. 2:1-3). He is at enmity with God, hostile toward and hateful of God.

  1. What lie(s) attempts to steal your trust in God’s love for you? What makes it challenging to believe the truth that sin is no longer your master?
  2. Consider the dangers of getting the root of sin wrong, which one do you most easily slip in? (Lack of repentance, lack of humility or lack of compassion)
  3. How might a correct understanding of sin draw us closer to God?
  4. How do grace and effort go together in the Christian life? How do we put the two together theologically and practically as we experience freedom from sin that is ours in Christ?
  5. What would a church full of people who are no longer under law but under grace look like? How might that church impact people in the surrounding community?

Rest in God’s promises. Jesus Christ is the eternal Son of God, who through His perfect life and sacrificial death, atoned for the sins of all who will trust in Him alone for salvation. Jesus died on the cross, so that God the Father might give eternal life to all those that He has given him. He became the object of the wrath of God and the curse of the law. The atonement for sin grants eternal salvation for all who believe (John 3:16). Jesus exempts us from spiritual death and provides the forgiveness of sin, once and for all (Romans 6:10). Thanks be to Him who sits at the right hand of God in heaven (Hebrews 1:3).

Close in prayer, giving thanks to God for forgiveness of sin and the freedom from sin.

Jill Barlow

Groups Minister
My hope for Citizens Church would be a place where disciples of Jesus are made and shaped.
Read More

Other Articles Teachings


John 4 | Engagement at the Well

August 19, 2022
Break the ice: What’s the weirdest dream you can remember having?Read John 4:7-26.7 A woman from Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give me a drink.” 8 (For his disciples had gone away into the city...

Psalm 27 | How to Talk to God When I Don't Desire God

August 12, 2022
Break the ice. What song or album could you listen to on repeat?Read Psalm 27. 1 The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I...

Belonging | The Doctrine of the Church (Part 2)

August 4, 2022
Break the ice. Where were you born?Read Ephesians 2:19-22.19 So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, 20 built on the foundation of the...