Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned— To be sure, sin was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not charged against anyone’s account where there is no law. Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who is a pattern of the one to come. ~Romans 5:12-14
There was a time in the US when there weren’t speed limits on many roads. So driving 70 mph on a road that today has a speed limit of 55 was not an offense, not ticket-able. Where there is no law, there is no way to charge someone with breaking a law. In the same way, before we had God’s law given, we couldn’t be charged with breaking that law. That doesn’t mean, however, that there wasn’t sin. People hurt each other and mistreated one another since the beginning of time, which is the point of the Cain and Abel story in Genesis.
The point Paul is making here is that Christ, and the work he accomplished, was not just trying to keep the rules. It goes much deeper, and further back, than that. What Christ came to do was to deal with our sinful hearts, which controlled our behavior since the beginning. We are selfish people, we harm others, we disregard God and his teachings. He was here to deal with the problem that began when we did – from the time of Adam.
Have you ever justified yourself by saying ‘technically’?? Technically, I didn’t lie. Technically, I didn’t sin? That’s a legal argument your brain has when your heart knows you’re wrong.
Prayer: God, you know my heart. You know my intentions. Forgive me for when I sinned even though I have convinced myself and others that I technically didn’t do anything wrong. Amen.