Main definitions of sin in English

: sin1sin2



  • 1An immoral act considered to be a transgression against divine law.

    ‘a sin in the eyes of God’
    [mass noun] ‘the human capacity for sin’
    • ‘He would not like to catch hold of and put to death some other innocent person to redeem this sinner from his sins.’
    • ‘Cole fears that his supernatural abilities themselves are a sin, and Malcolm's sin is the classic sin of unbelief.’
    • ‘For Luther, the rest of the commandments function both to show us God's will for our lives and actions and to show us that we are sinners whose sins violate God's call to love.’
    • ‘Isaiah assures us that God ‘blots out’ our transgressions and forgets our sin.’
    • ‘He promised a saviour who would carry the sin, selfishness, unbelief, disease, grief, sorrow and fear of death on Himself and Destroy that fear, for Good.’
    • ‘The Israelites followed this pattern by presenting sin offerings to cover their sins by sacrificing an animal life for their disobedience to God.’
    • ‘The transcriptions themselves reveal people who claim Jesus as their Savior who redeems them from Satan and the sin of the world they know.’
    • ‘This entails, I believe, the more radical conclusion that hell can no longer be conceived of as a punishment for human sins by God.’
    • ‘We now live in, and scientists study, a creation damaged by human sin and divine judgment.’
    • ‘Part of the transgression of a sin is using something holy for an unholy purpose.’
    • ‘As expected, there is a transferral of hatred from the sin to the sinner.’
    • ‘It tells people to ‘hate the sin but love the sinner’, knowing full well that this flies in the face of human nature.’
    • ‘In this way they make Christ not only useless to us but also a judge and a tyrant who is angry because of our sins and who damns sinners.’
    • ‘We have repented for the unbelief and our sins are blotted out.’
    • ‘The divine strategy for defeating sin, evil and death is fulfilled in suffering love.’
    • ‘People thought he was blasphemous because he forgave sins.’
    • ‘Why not go to Christ this very day, and cast your soul on him, with all its sins and all its unbelief, with all its doubts and all its fears?’
    • ‘The sages say that this sin, the rejection of the Land of Israel, was in some ways more grievous than the sin of worshipping the Golden Calf.’
    • ‘Likewise for some Christian thinkers today, greed can mask an even greater sin; the sin of idolatry.’
    • ‘Of all the sins of Jerusalem, these two were singled out by God as the most severe.’
    immoral act, wrong, wrongdoing, act of evil, act of wickedness, transgression, crime, offence, misdeed, misdemeanour, error, lapse, fall from grace
    wickedness, wrongdoing, wrong, evil, evil-doing, sinfulness, ungodliness, unrighteousness, immorality, vice, transgression, crime, error, iniquity, irreligiousness, irreverence, profanity, blasphemy, impiety, impiousness, sacrilege, profanation, desecration
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1An act regarded as a serious or regrettable fault, offence, or omission.
      ‘he committed the unforgivable sin of refusing to give interviews’
      • ‘It's faux news for a slow day, not even a slow day but a slow hour, which in cable apparently is an unforgivable sin.’
      • ‘I am a young, ordinary person; I struggle with my life, my faults and my sins just like everyone else.’
      • ‘I was so eager to be a part of something underground at that point that I would have committed actual sins involving caffeine to be accepted as a writer.’
      • ‘This sin is almost as serious as leaving a mobile switched on in church.’
      • ‘It also commits two completely unforgivable sins, both of which I will get to momentarily.’
      • ‘Wronging a woman is the unforgivable sin in Holmes's book.’
      • ‘They are being met with indifference or active hostility because they have committed the unforgivable sin of cooperating with the Americans.’
      • ‘Even worse, director John Irvin commits the unforgivable sin of mistaking shocks for scares.’
      • ‘To mislead parliament - even inadvertently - is the unforgivable sin.’
      • ‘If we take RBC seriously, the sin of totalitarian nations who restrict people's movements lies simply in not being imaginative enough.’
      • ‘Pryor has committed the sin of actually quoting from that hyper-religious document known as the Declaration of Independence!’
      • ‘This goes beyond the day-to-day omissions and sins that characterize politics.’
      • ‘Drugs, of course, have replaced alcohol as the unforgivable sin, and to be found smoking cannabis is considered every bit as serious a crime as downing vintage cognac.’
      • ‘Far more serious than their sins against the basic rules of journalism is the corporate stranglehold over the major print and broadcast outlets.’
      • ‘Unlike some, I don't consider it an unforgivable sin to be a social conservative.’
      • ‘It's my own sin, my own fault and I just want to say I'm sorry.’
      • ‘And gambling is no longer a serious sin when it is virtual money you win and lose.’
      • ‘The existence of the petition process is an unforgivable sin, and we actually permit this to exist for decades!’
      • ‘And Lordy, the script committed two unforgivable sins.’
      • ‘Aside from an entertaining opening sequence, the only new ground that this film covers is when it commits the unforgivable sin of revising one of Milne's past stories.’
      scandal, crime, disgrace, outrage
      View synonyms


  • 1 Commit a sin.

    ‘I sinned and brought shame down on us’
    • ‘Since they already owed everything to God before they sinned and incurred debt on top of that, they are in the hole of obligation to God, so to speak.’
    • ‘As soon as Adam and Eve first sinned, ‘God the Father would have no more to do with man immediately.’’
    • ‘When man sinned, God as a righteous and Holy creator had to judge sin with death.’
    • ‘God would never have left Jesus Christ, the Savior who never sinned, to violate The Fourth Commandment by observing the wrong day of the week.’
    • ‘It exists because, in Adam's sin, all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.’
    • ‘First, if ten Jews are present, he must give up his life rather than commit any sin, if he is being forced to sin only to desecrate the Torah.’
    • ‘It is through Jesus Christ, the Son of God that never sinned, that God is kind, graceful, to His other potential children who do sin.’
    • ‘There, Rashi points out that this sacrifice is brought for a sin known only to Hashem, meaning one where that the sinner was unaware that he had sinned.’
    • ‘Adam sinned and brought death, disease and bloodshed into the world.’
    • ‘Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God, never sinned.’
    • ‘While He spent over thirty years on earth, He never once sinned - He did nothing wrong.’
    • ‘We may not always admit to being sinners, but deep down inside, we recognise that we are sinners, and we have an awareness that we have sinned or are sinning.’
    • ‘If a person sees another Jew sinning or following the wrong path, he is required to correct him and attempt to set him right.’
    • ‘If they have sinned and gone astray, the bishop should still be their father in Christ; he should not deal with them at arm's length, as if he were their prosecutor.’
    • ‘When we admit that we have sinned and ask God for forgiveness, we receive a kind of washing by the power of Jesus' blood-a washing that brings with it God's power to change.’
    • ‘The reason for death (as Dan's illustration depicts) is that all humans have committed high treason against our Creator because we sinned in Adam.’
    • ‘I don't see it as a cruel act that God would bring about the death of plants and animals before Adam sinned.’
    • ‘Before Adam sinned the world was perfect, then Adam and Eve sinned.’
    • ‘During that time, one who sinned could activate his or her repentant energies by physically bringing an animal offering to God on the Temple altar.’
    • ‘Because we sinned and thus committed high treason against the God of creation, we don't even deserve to exist!’
    commit a sin, offend against god, commit an offence, transgress, do wrong, commit a crime, break the law, misbehave, go astray, stray from the straight and narrow, go wrong, fall from grace
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1Offend against (God, a person, or a principle)
      ‘Lord, we have sinned against you’
      • ‘Do we call down hell-fire on the man who has sinned against the Word?’
      • ‘To sin against the Holy Spirit is to sin against hope.’
      • ‘To live in this world was to live in the expectation of sinning and being sinned against.’
      • ‘It is his ministry that redeems men and women who have sinned against God, and ‘buys them back’ from death and hell.’
      • ‘The first claim in the present patent appears to sin against both these connected principles.’
      • ‘You see God gave us, He gave Adam dominion over the earth; and then when Adam sinned against Him, God removed some of His sustaining power.’
      • ‘By sinning against God the human race was tarnished and a barrier put between us and God.’
      • ‘He had hidden God's word in his heart that he might not sin against him.’
      • ‘In it, they are shown as shirkers and complainers, often sinning against their own God and His law.’
      • ‘It seems theologically obvious to note that if all have sinned, then all have been sinned against.’
      • ‘I hereby forgive everyone who offended or angered me, or sinned against me.’
      • ‘But Adam sinned against God and everything changed: ‘For the wages of sin is death’.’
      • ‘For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.’
      • ‘Likewise, Adam and Eve, having been made by God without sin, listened to the devil and chose to sin against God.’
      • ‘When I confess my sins and ask God for favour he requires that my confession of sin include forgiveness of those who have sinned against me.’
      • ‘More often than we perhaps realize, we sin against the Lord, and confess our sins, and He not only are forgives and restores us, but also gives no further discipline.’
      • ‘Now when I sin I sin against the Lord and his blood.’
      • ‘God deals with this problem in his justice by saying ‘For your sins against me the immortal, eternal God, you will suffer forever’ and hence the place we call Hell.’
      • ‘I will go at once to my father, and say to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against God and against you; I am no longer fit to be called your son; treat me as one of your hired servants.’’
      • ‘As we remember the sufferings of Jesus, we can also recall how we have sinned against God and each other.’


  • (as) —— as sin

    • informal Having a particular undesirable quality to a high degree.

      ‘as ugly as sin’
      ‘miserable as sin’
      • ‘His ranking slumped, his spirits dropped, and he looked as miserable as sin.’
      • ‘Now, for my money, Scott's pretty clearly about as guilty as sin.’
      • ‘Ingram came across as slightly confused, far from comfortable with his answers, and indeed, guilty as sin.’
      • ‘I'm still as miserable as sin and twice as spotty.’
      • ‘It's always been my feeling that all four boys were guilty as sin.’
      • ‘Obviously I'll be as miserable as sin tomorrow when I'm in hangover central, but I'm making the most of this whilst it lasts.’
      • ‘They look miserable as sin, but they are all wearing raincoats, and seem to be rather warmer than you.’
      • ‘It was probably a rash idea to remove all the coving around the top of my back room, but it was also ugly as sin.’
      • ‘As Marshall commonsensically observes, this whole trial balloon is beside the point, since everything points to the perp or perps being ‘guilty as sin.’’
      • ‘And if you are ugly as sin and suddenly find yourself being chatted up by a pretty female or a handsome male, who wants specific information from you, consider seriously why you are suddenly the centre of attention.’
  • for one's sins

    • humorous Used to suggest that a task or duty is so onerous or unpleasant that it must be a punishment.

      ‘he teaches Latin for his sins’
      • ‘I happened to watch for the first time the television program Home Front last week and, for my sins, it struck a chord.’
      • ‘Andre co-wrote half the tracks, including the annoying Insania, and the cod reggae Mysterious Girl, included twice here for our sins.’
      • ‘And for our sins, we tend to take with us Owd Tom, who otherwise rarely gets out of Beggarsdale since he let his son, Mid Tom, take their stock to the auction mart.’
  • like sin

    • informal Vehemently or forcefully.

      ‘you can lie like sin to a keyboard’
      • ‘Picture Amneris, the slighted daughter of the Pharaohs, in Liz Taylor's inch-thick Cleopatra make-up, eyes glowing like sin, singing with a voice to move the heavens.’
      • ‘I suppose the moral of the story is that emoticons do nothing to aid the clarity of some originary emotion at the root of a comment because of the simple fact that you can lie like sin to a keyboard.’
  • live in sin

    • Live together as though married.

      • ‘In late 1984 I was living in sin in the Latrobe Valley with a girl of catholic upbringing.’
      • ‘She gave up the Victorian ideals of marriage and lived in sin with her soulmate, who happened to be married to someone else.’
      • ‘A great idea for anyone who, like me, is getting married but has been living in sin for years and so has a bottom drawer full of towels, bedding, frying pans and cut glass.’
      • ‘A wedding immediately for two who are living in sin!’
      • ‘Soon marriage may be non-existent given the freedom we have to live in sin with our partners.’
      • ‘Since when was it defamatory to accuse someone of not living in sin, as it used to be called?’
      • ‘It was perhaps more of a stigma for the children that mother was living in sin than it was for the parents.’
      • ‘Back when my wife and I were college room-mates living in sin, we had a cockatiel that really, really liked her.’
      • ‘He had to have a metal plate inserted in his skull and afterwards he ran off with a local woman and lived in sin with her.’
      • ‘Roisin's religious background burdens her with an unforgiving priest who considers her to be living in sin.’
  • sin of commission

    • A sinful action.

      • ‘He should have done more, he knew it was wrong, and he had tolerated evil to be done, a sin of omission, equally as bad as a sin of commission.’
      • ‘Generally with the media it's always the sins of omission, not the sins of commission, that are the more grave.’
      • ‘As the parable implies, the fervently devout may have a harder time admitting their sins of commission and omission than the less observant.’
      • ‘Finally, several respondents take issue with my policy recommendations, based on alleged sins of commission or omission.’
      • ‘And should my sin of commission or omission create employment, I do not even need to be acquitted.’
      • ‘Besides the sins of omission, there are also sins of commission.’
      • ‘The early common law was hard put to deal with the intentional infliction of harm, and sins of omission are popularly regarded as less culpable than sins of commission.’
      • ‘War and rumors of war are matters of judgments of past failures by all, of sins of commission and omission, of what has been done and what has been left undone.’
      • ‘The sins of omission are always worse than the sins of commission in journalism.’
      • ‘But we rarely hear about the West's more recent sins of commission.’
  • sin of omission

    • A sinful failure to perform an action.

      ‘sins of omission more usually cause such problems’
      • ‘After World War II, the German Protestant churches issued a statement of repentance for their sins of omission and commission during the Third Reich.’
      • ‘But while we are apologizing for past misdeeds, isn't it time to offer preemptive apologies for our current sins of omission and commission?’
      • ‘Like most nice people, I specialize in sins of omission.’
      • ‘Call it missed historic opportunity or sin of omission.’
      • ‘While evil men go from bad to worse, we can no longer even get away with sins of omission!’
      • ‘The example also presents several sins of omission.’
      • ‘Such manipulation of the media - whether sins of commission or sins of omission - needs to be guarded against.’
      • ‘This part of the book, which overwhelms and depresses readers with the magnitude of ecclesiastical sins of omission and commission, is followed by a welcome section on rescuing and sheltering individuals and organizations.’
      • ‘Hence, most of the elite media's sins are now sins of omission - the stories never told.’
      • ‘For secular Jews though, it is probably more meaningful to directly acknowledge political sins of omission and commission.’


Old English synn (noun), syngian (verb); probably related to Latin sons, sont- guilty.




Main definitions of sin in English

: sin1sin2


  • Sine.