Over the centuries, church leaders have presented views on sin. Augustine of Hippo (AD 354-430) believed that sin was a violation of God’s law. In the fourth century, a Christian monk, Evagrius Ponticus, wrote about eight evil thoughts: gluttony, lust, avarice, anger, indolence, sadness, arrogance, and pride, which were detrimental to his required spiritual functions. In the sixth century, Pope Gregory I (Gregory the Great) made the list of the seven deadly sins: pride, envy, gluttony, greed, lust, indolence, and anger.
Sin was a popular topic in the Middle Ages. Moral plays were popular and performed in many cities. In “The Divine Comedy”, Dante vividly described the levels of hell in which people were punished according to the nature of their sin. Chaucer in “The Canterbury Tales” included “The Parson’s Tale” which addressed the seven deadly sins. Many artists depicted the sad plight of sinners in their paintings.
Today the study of sin in Christian theology is called hamartiology. It describes sin as an offensive act against God and biblical Christian laws. The study covers the concepts of natural and moral law as well as Christian ethics. Fortunately, “God is a merciful and gracious God, slow to anger, rich in love and faithfulness”. (Psalm 86:15) The passage about unforgivable sin that should be read is found at Mark 3: 28-29. “Verily, I tell you, men can be forgiven for all their sins and every slander they utter, but whoever blasphemes the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven; they are guilty of an eternal sin. “