Sin Brings its Own Punishment

There are some good Bible stories illustrating that sin (evil intended against others) results in negative natural consequences (“punishment”) to the evildoer:


“And Esther spake yet again before the king, and fell down at his feet, and besought him with tears to put away the mischief of Haman the Agagite, and his device that he had devised against the Jews. … Then the king Ahasuerus said unto Esther the queen and to Mordecai the Jew, Behold, I have given Esther the house of Haman, and him they have hanged upon the gallows, because he laid his hand upon the Jews.” (Esther 8:3,7)

Daniel’s Accusers

“Then said these men, We shall not find any occasion against this Daniel, except we find it against him concerning the law of his God. … All the presidents of the kingdom, the governors, and the princes, the counsellors, and the captains, have consulted together to establish a royal statute, and to make a firm decree, that whosoever shall ask a petition of any God or man for thirty days, save of thee, O king, he shall be cast into the den of lions. … And the king commanded, and they brought those men which had accused Daniel, and they cast [them] into the den of lions, them, their children, and their wives; and the lions had the mastery of them, and brake all their bones in pieces or ever they came at the bottom of the den.” (Dan 6:5,7,24)

Verses showing that sin brings its own punishment (in Biblical order)

“But if ye will not do so, behold, ye have sinned against the LORD: and be sure your sin will find you out.” (Num 32:23)

“Destroy thou them, O God; let them fall by their own counsels; cast them out in the multitude of their transgressions; for they have rebelled against thee.” (Psa 5:10)

At first glance, that verse seems to support that God destroys or punishes rather than that sin brings its own punishment. However, that is not God saying He will destroy. Further, there is a significant translation issue.

“Destroy,” in this verse, is from the Hebrew “asham” (H816) which is translated (in the KJV) as: guilty 14, desolate 6, offend 6, trespass 4, certainly 1, destroy 1, faulty 1, greatly 1, offence 1. Notice that it is only translated as “destroy in this one verse and more properly means something like to have offended or to be held guilty. Here are some other translations using terms more consistent with the definitions in Strong’s and the Bible’s other uses of the same word:

“Hold them guilty, O God; By their own devices let them fall! In the multitude of their transgressions thrust them out, For they are rebellious against You.” (Psa 5:10, New American Standard Bible)

“O God, declare them guilty. Let them be caught in their own traps. Drive them away because of their many sins, for they have rebelled against You.” (Psa 5:10, New Living Translation)

“Declare them guilty, O God, Let them fall from their own counsels, In the abundance of their transgressions Drive them away, Because they have rebelled against Thee.” (Psa 5:10, Young’s Literal Translation)

Here is the verse from The Remedy:

“Diagnose them as terminal, O God! Let their false remedy be their doom. Let them go who cling to their sin-sickness, for they rebel against your treatment and violate your designs.” (Psa 5:10, The Remedy New Testament and Psalms)

“Behold, he travaileth with iniquity, and hath conceived mischief, and brought forth falsehood. He made a pit, and digged it, and is fallen into the ditch which he made.  His mischief shall return upon his own head, and his violent dealing shall come down upon his own pate..” (Psa 7:14-16)

The second part of verse 16 “the wicked is snared in the work of his own hands” explains the first part – how the LORD executes judgment – by allowing the wicked to receive the results of their own choices and actions. Here it is from the New Living Translation:

“The wicked conceive evil; they are pregnant with trouble and give birth to lies. They dig a deep pit to trap others, then fall into it themselves. The trouble they make for others backfires on them. The violence they plan falls on their own heads.” (Psa 7:14-16, New Living Translation)

“The heathen are sunk down in the pit that they made: in the net which they hid is their own foot taken. The LORD is known by the judgment which he executeth: the wicked is snared in the work of his own hands. Higgaion. Selah.” (Psa 9:15-16)

“Evil shall slay the wicked: and they that hate the righteous shall be desolate.” (Psa 34:21)

Think about that verse. If, ultimately, God does slay the wicked and, as the verse says, “evil shall slay the wicked” then what does that imply about God? Doesn’t it equate God Himself with wickedness? Wouldn’t that be a problem? How about evil – sin itself – causing death which God is trying to protect us from? That is what the passages on this page show.

“Let the wicked fall into their own nets, whilst that I withal escape.” (Psa 141:10)

“For that they hated knowledge, and did not choose the fear of the LORD: They would none of my counsel: they despised all my reproof. Therefore shall they eat of the fruit of their own way, and be filled with their own devices. For the turning away of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity of fools shall destroy them.” (Pro 1:29-33)

“His own iniquities shall take the wicked himself, and he shall be holden with the cords of his sins. He shall die without instruction; and in the greatness of his folly he shall go astray.” (Pro 5:22-23)

“But he that sinneth against me wrongeth his own soul: all they that hate me love death.” (Pro 8:36)

“But they that sin against me act wickedly against their own souls: and they that hate me love death.” (Pro 8:36, Brenton Septuagint Translation)

“But he that shall sin against me, shall hurt his own soul. All that hate me love death.” (Pro 8:36, Douay-Rheims Bible)

“but he that sinneth against me doeth violence to his own soul: all they that hate me love death.” (Pro 8:36, Darby Bible Translation)

“As righteousness tendeth to life: so he that pursueth evil pursueth it to his own death.” (Pro 11:19)

“Righteousness keepeth him that is upright in the way: but wickedness overthroweth the sinner.” (Pro 13:6)

“Evil pursueth sinners: but to the righteous good shall be repayed.” (Pro 13:21)

“There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” (Pro 14:12)

“Ye shall conceive chaff, ye shall bring forth stubble: your breath, as fire, shall devour you.” (Isa 33:11)

“Breath” is from the Hebrew word “ruwach” can be also be translated as “spirit” or “mind.”

“Thine own wickedness shall correct thee, and thy backslidings shall reprove thee: know therefore and see that it is an evil thing and bitter, that thou hast forsaken the LORD thy God, and that my fear is not in thee, saith the Lord GOD of hosts.” (Jer 2:19)

Here is the verse from the Easy to Read Version:

“The evil you yourselves have done will be your punishment, your errors will be your judge: be certain then, and see that it is an evil and a bitter thing to give up the Lord your God, and no longer to be moved by fear of me, says the Lord, the Lord of armies.” (Jer 2:19, Easy to Read Version)

“Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: for why will ye die, O house of Israel?” (Eze 18:31)

This verse indicates that Satan’s destruction would come about because of a fire that would come from the midst of him.

“Thou hast defiled thy sanctuaries by the multitude of thine iniquities, by the iniquity of thy traffick; therefore will I bring forth a fire from the midst of thee, it shall devour thee, and I will bring thee to ashes upon the earth in the sight of all them that behold thee.” (Eze 28:18)

God takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked and is constantly working to protect them from death and lead them to life.

“Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel?” (Eze 33:11)

This verse says that death comes by or as a result of sin:

“Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:” (Rom 5:12)

That death must include spiritual death, temporal death (that Jesus described as “sleep”) and eternal death since no death existed prior to Adam’s sin. Sin causes death, not God Who characterizes death as an enemy (1 Cor 15:26).

“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (Rom 6:23)

“Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” (Gal 6:7)

“Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.” (James 1:15)

“But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.” (2 Pet 2:1)

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