Sin has been around since Satan convinced Eve into eating the forbidden fruit, and since then humanity has been born into this sin. As everybody grows up they morally choose what is right and wrong to them as a person. For example, some people may view something as a sinful action, but you may find other people that view that same action as just and the right thing to do. Unfortunately, people will take their moral views to the extremes. Some people take it to the point where they refuse to believe in a thing such as sin, while other people are afraid that if they sin there will be no place for them in heaven.
Someone that believes in attaining a sinless state of being is called a Puritan. Puritans were quite prevalent throughout the 1800's. They recognized the sin in our world, but felt that it was there duty to become sinless people.
Puritans can be associated with the stereotypical view of the elderly in church. Most of them can be easily identified by their attitudes and actions, of which seem to possess very hypocritical and artificial qualities to them. Which means you are able to view their outward appearance, but very little of their inward appearance, which is hidden by a shroud of unattainable perfectionism.
Society's view of sin today is somewhat meek. Many people even go to the point of denouncing sin. It is some of these very same people that are society's most notorious murderers, rapists, and con artists. As the years pass, humanity is ever increasingly becoming desensitized to the cruel aspects of our sinful world. These days society tries to find reasons for the sins they commit. Murderers blame their environment they were raised in, and rapists say the victim had it coming.
There are some good aspects regarding the debate of the different viewpoints of sin and what constitutes it. One positive result of living a Puritan life is that you are showing to people that you are try to become a better person. There are also rewards in the modern views on the idea of sin. Living your life with a modern view of sin, allows you to become more forthcoming and friendly towards others, since you are not as worried about what people may think about you.
I have come to the conclusion that Puritan and modern day views of sin both have some common ground. They can both be taken to extremes, and it is when this happens that these two ideologies can become dangerous and unhealthy to self and others. But if a person is able to learn to balance and keep in check with their beliefs, it can produce a very healthy relationship with God and other people.