The moralist sees it as “wrong or bad” behavior, as opposed to “right and good” behavior.  The legalist sees it as the transgression of the letter of the law, such as the Ten Commandments.  The disciples of Messiah see it as the transgression of the law of love.  Since Jesus taught love to be the fulfillment of the law, they know that at its core, sin is a failure to love.  “You shall love your neighbor as yourself,” James called the royal law (James 2:8).

“Owe nothing to anyone except to love one another; for he who loves his neighbor has fulfilled the law.  For this, “YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT ADULTERY, YOU SHALL NOT MURDER, YOU SHALL NOT STEAL, YOU SHALL NOT COVET,” and if there is any other commandment, it is summed up in this saying, “YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.” Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.” Romans 13:8-10 (NASB)