Original Sin is Unbiblical
Augustine was just making things up
The doctrine of original sin is one of the most damaging lies ever inflicted on the human race. Developed by Tertullian and popularized by Augustine, original sin says we all inherited Adam’s fallen nature.
There is no question that sinners have a sinful nature and that we all need to be saved from sin, but Augustine went further. He said we are born corrupt, and that we inherited a rebellious streak from our forefather Adam.
You were born spiritually dead and rebellious at heart. From the moment you drew your first breath, you were inclined towards sin, utterly depraved, and hostile towards God.
What is original sin?
This is how John Calvin (1509–1564) defined original sin:
Original sin may be defined a hereditary corruption and depravity of our nature, extending to all the parts of the soul, which first makes us obnoxious to the wrath of God, and then produces in us works which in Scripture are termed works of the flesh.
The key word is hereditary. The doctrine of original sin, as taught by Augustine, Calvin, et al., says you inherited a rebellious streak from your forefather Adam. Adam was a rebel which makes you a rebel. Before you were born, you were inclined to sin and disobey God. You were born bad to the bone and bound for hell.
“Men are born vicious,” said Calvin, as a result of the sin that Adam inflicted on upon his descendants.
The Lutherans agreed saying that all men, “from their mother’s womb, are full of evil desire and inclination, and can have by nature no true fear of God, no true faith in God.”
Like you, I grew up believing I was a natural born sinner inclined to rebel. It was obvious, wasn’t it? Just look at how I struggled with sin.
But around the time my children were born I began to question this teaching. “Is this little treasure really a hell-born brat?!”
After more than 15 years of studying this, I have come to the conviction that Augustine’s doctrine of original sin is a manmade and thoroughly unbiblical teaching.
(If you’re interested in how I got here, check out my ebook entitled Original Sin: What Does the Bible Really Say? on Patreon.)
To clarify, the issue is not whether people are depraved, corrupt, and defiled, but whether we are born that way. Were we born corrupt or did we become corrupt? Did we enter the world sinning and rebelling against God, or did we go astray along the way?
Those who preach Augustine’s doctrine of original sin swing for the hereditary answer. Our sinful nature is essentially a sin gene, an inherited disposition towards sin, and we are all born with it.
Again, there is no question that all have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory, and there is no doubt that Adam’s transgression had consequences that affect all of us (see Romans 5). My issue is with Augustine’s suggestion that after the Fall humanity was essentially remade or rewired to sin.
Scriptures used to support original sin include Gen. 5:3, 8:1, Ps. 51:5, 58:3, Jer. 17:9, Mark 7:23, Rom. 3:10–12, 5:12, 19, 7:18, and Eph. 2:1 and 3. I address these scriptures in my new book, but today I want to look at some other scriptures.
Scriptures refuting original sin
Original sin says you were shaped by sin in your mother’s womb. You were born defective and rebellious on account of Adam’s bad genes.
The Bible paints a different picture. Many wonderful scriptures show that you were handmade by God. Here’s a taste:
Your hands shaped me and made me. (Job 10:8).
You have been my God from my mother’s womb. (Ps. 22:10)
Your hands made me and formed me… (Ps. 119:73)
Thus says the Lord, your Redeemer, and he who formed you from the womb… (Is. 44:24)
God made you. He shaped you, fashioned you, and knitted you together, and he did a great job:
I will give thanks to you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works, and my soul knows it very well. (Ps. 139:14)
Augustinian tradition says you are defective and broken, but the Scriptures declare you are fearfully and wonderfully made.
You are a one of a kind special.
Where does the sin gene figure in this? It doesn’t. Adam’s sin affected the ground and everything that comes out of the ground, and this is why death is experienced in our physical bodies.
But your body is merely a home or earthsuit that you wear and which will one day be upgraded. The real you – your spirit and your mental faculties – comes from God (Job 32:8).
For you formed my inward parts. You wove me in my mother’s womb. (Ps. 139:13)
Your outward parts may be aging and broken, but your inward parts are first-rate because God doesn’t do shoddy work. You are not a mistake because God doesn’t make mistakes.
“If original sin is not true, why is the world such a mess?” This verse explains it:
Truly, this only I have found: That God made man upright, but they have sought out many schemes. (Ecc. 7:29, NKJV)
God did a good job making humanity, but we ran after evil schemes and corrupted ourselves. We are not born corrupt but we become corrupted by the deceitful desires of the old self (Eph. 4:22), the pollutions of this world (2 Pet. 2:7, 20), and tradition and religion (1 Pet. 1:18–19). Behind all these sources of corruption we see the influence of the devil (see Eph. 2:1–2).
Original sin is one of those doctrines that sounds biblical but isn’t. It combines words and phrases from the Bible in ways that contradict the Bible.
The key differences between this manmade doctrine and what the scriptures actually say are summarized in the Table below (click on the pic for a bigger version).
Original sin has been around so long it’s hard to imagine an alternative, but the Bible has been around longer and the picture it paints is clear as day.
Other articles on original sin:
- Old Testament scriptures used to support original sin
- New Testament scriptures used to support original sin
- The religious origins of original sin
- What is the true significance of the virgin birth?
- Are your children natural born sinners?
- What happens to unbaptized infants who die?
- Has original sin made you a bad parent?
- Six reasons why original sin cannot be true
Great post Paul! I like how looking at it from the perspective that we’re not all born sinners, but we’re born with the ability to sin goes in line with the fact that after we become believers we can still sin because we still have the ability, not because it’s in our nature. So, are you saying that we never HAD a sin nature to begin with? That instead we took on a sin nature through being taught of the World? That will really flip some doctrines on their heads! I’m still going to ponder all of it and talk with Holy Spirit about it as well. Thanks for sharing your convictions on this! I’m going to leave with this, the song No Longer Slaves says, “from my Mother’s womb, You have chosen me, Love has called my name”. I like how it doesn’t say, “from my Mother’s womb, I was depraved, but thank God for taking pity on me and saving me anyway”!
Thanks Steve L. I plan to talk more about the sinful nature in coming articles, so will hold off until then. But don’t you find it interesting how many scriptures there are about people going astray and becoming corrupt? Neither of those things could happen if we were born astray and corrupt.
Wow thank you Dr.Paul for this. For how many years I’m wondering about babies aborted or died. And because of the original sin teaching I question where do they go? Now knowing this teaching is man-made it gives me peace to know that we are created by Him according to His image.Thank you’ve much and God bless you!
Hi Paul! This is a great post! I came to this article because I read Psalm 51:5 and I wanted to get your perspective on that verse. I believe everything you’re saying and I know that even when there’s something in the Bible that seems to contradict revelation, it never really does. God bless!
Hi Caleb, I unpack Ps 51:5 in my article “Old Testament Scriptures Used to Support Original Sin.”
Thank You for that explanation on original sin. You know, its really sad that religion has lead people away from the true verses and meanings of the Bible. I am of the Catholic Religion and the more I learn about the Bible, the more I am learning to not believe everything that our priests are telling us. Its just like they tell us that we can not be forgiven of our sins unless we confess them to a priest. My(Everybody’s) sins are already forgive because of what Jesus did for me on the cross, AND, what he did for me on the THIRD day. Its religion and I do not trust religion. THANK YOU !!
I’m glad you’re here Terry.
Two thoughts: Many years ago, I speculated that it is not that sin is something innate within us at birth (like a gene), but that it is like being born into an avalanche; you are not predisposed to go that way, but we pretty much know which direction you’re going to go. It is irresistible and therefore universal.
The other thought is that we are stillborn. I’m not sure about this, but aren’t we born spiritually dead? If so, then we are born in sin. We will automatically be at enmity with God because we lack the one thing that would keep us from it: Him. Immersed in a world of sin without that lifeline, our path is inevitable until we find him.
I like that avalanche metaphor, Allen. I pictured it as being born on top of a hill and whichever route you took was downhill. I talk about spiritual death in the book and may write an article about it here. Short version: I don’t like using phrases that aren’t in the Bible.
My view of original sin…. the knowledge of good and evil, combined with imperfection. That’s it. Yes, from the second we are born we compare ourselves to others and eventually to the abstract concept of perfection that we would otherwise call God. And when we do that, we “fall short” (definitionally, sin). His forgiveness grace save us from this.
Yes, we all fall short of the good and godly life God has for us. We all need grace.
I love that these articles always provoke thought.
Thanks LJP. Right now I’m in that heady honeymoon period where I have written something challenging tradition and all the initial comments are kind and encouraging. I’m bracing myself for the inevitable blowback to follow. It usually takes critics a day or two to respond. 🙂
Thanks Paul. No matter how much we hear it taught, doesn’t make it biblical. To think that God will hold you to account for the sin of someone else. This same God! Ain’t no way this is possible!
It does seem strange, doesn’t it.
Hi how can God hold one accountable for someone else sin.
Did God account for the whole of Isreal sin. Isreal could only believe as a nation and not as individuals?
All our good works are like fifthly rags.
Then you better not believe that another person (Christ) can take away your sins. Unfortunately, we are descendants of a fallen Adam and we all enter this world under the wrath of God (Rom 2).
What verse says we enter the world under the wrath of God? What I read in Romans 2 is that we are under wrath because of our hard and impertinent hearts.
I meant Rom 1 actually verse 18. We all are born under his wrath as unbelievers “in Adam” until we become believers who are then “in Christ” and now have peace with God.
That verse doesn’t say anything about being born under his wrath. It says that all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men is under his wrath.
OK at what age does an unbeliever fit this category of producing ungodliness and unrighteousness? the Bible doesn’t put an age on it, but it does explain how we are either in the flesh or in the spirit in Adam or in Christ.
I believe it’s an emotional appeal based on the kindness of God that
babies and children are safe. I hope and I believe that that is the way God operates.
Dominic, I respond to your question in my article, “What happens to unbaptized infants who die?“
There isn’t any set age. Ungodliness and unrighteousness are something we learn through the world around us corrupted by sin. We are all susceptible to this corruption unless we have the blood of Jesus to cover us.
Hi Paul, “New nature” vs “new life” on your chart. Then, how do you interpret Gal. 2:20? What “part” of Paul was crucified with Christ if not his “old spirit nature” – which I take to mean his core or essence (vs his outer man i.e. soul – mind, will, emotions and conscience – and body?) What part of him is a “new creation” – totally reborn from scratch? Just asking and seeking clarification. (I have been basing all my teaching on being either in Adam or being in the New Adam, Jesus, by rebirth. What is different?) Lenny
To say “I died with Christ” is to say the old person I used to be (a sinner) no longer lives. More here.
The “here” article is a great overview that I totally agree with and I teach. So for clarification, when and how, in your personal life (existence), did you “become a sinner?”
I became a sinner the moment Adam sinned (see Romans 5).
“I became a sinner the moment Adam sinned.” Rom. 5 I want to think that through.
The word “became” is a “being” or essence/nature descriptive. (You were something and “became” something else. Were you “good” than became “evil?) As you know, Humans are “spirit beings” with a soul that live in a physical body – (even though not all Christians agree with that paradigm.) The phrase above suggests that you were someone else ( a non-sinner by nature) before Adam sinned (presumably existing in the eternal mind of God, since you were not yet conceived in the natural realm.) Then when he sinned, you had a “being” (or nature) change (not just a behavior change) when he did his “disbelieving” of God’s warning. Is that how you see the “switch” or ….? (I think the revelation of God’s true identity and our true identity is one of the major truths that set true Christianity from every other belief system. That is why I am looking for clarification.)
I was not around when Adam sinned but all of us were “in him” when he sinned which is why all die on account of his sin (see 1 Cor 15:22). Your sinful nature and my sinful nature and indeed Adam’s sinful nature are immaterial. It was his sinful act or transgression that led to the Fall (Rom. 5:17-18).
Children only accountable when come of age of understanding. We can not all blame Adam and Eve, because we all have also sinned. But Word says that sin come into the world by one man. Jesus came to settle sin once and for all, one man Adam brought all sin NOW by one man sin was taken away. Origin sin was there before Adam and Eve sinned, as there was already a tree of GOOD AND EVIL.
GODs punishment for taking fruit from tree of good and evil, was you shall Shirley die. BUT GOD then says because you eat from the tree, Adam you shall labour the land for food. Eve you shall have pain in child birth, Satan you shall eat dust for rest of your life and crawl on your belly. Was this know before they eat the fruit?
Hi Mario, I discuss the age of accountability in the book and may write an article about it here in due course. Short version: it’s an extra-Biblical concept used to patch the holes in another extra-Biblical concept (original sin). Stay tuned!
This is new to me but something to ponder. My understanding is because of the sin of Adam we were born separated from God and that our spirit is dead. That’s why when we believe in Jesus we were reconciled with God and now are spirit has been reborn and we were given a new nature. If the general teaching on the original sin is unbiblical, why do we have to be born again? What is the point? We are all fearfully and wonderfully made and if we all say no to the flesh, whether through self-effort or reliance on God, then are we all on the same page? I get some of your points which are really good but what about the consequence of Adam’s sin? Do tell me more.
Why do we need to be born again? Because without the life God gives we are all dead. The issues are far more serious than an inherited sinful nature.
Thanks Paul. It will take me a little while to get my head around this and convince me, but I’m open to the Holy Spirit to lead and guide me through it. Cheers
I don’t agree. Hebrews 10:5-7. If your theory is true, then God would not have had to go through all the trouble of bringing forth His only begotten son/; find a virgin who knew and accepted the plan; sin less because Holy Spirit of God gave her Jesus sinless; the human LOVE payment for the SIN of the world.
The virgin birth is utterly essential to our salvation. I have a whole chapter on it in the book.
So babies with inborn abnormalities and defects, are they corrupted already by evil from the womb?
That sounds like something a theologian might say. I can’t imagine Jesus saying anything like that.
Jesus specifically says that being born with a disability ISN’T (or at least isn’t necessarily) either the result of our somehow having been evil in the womb, or of our parents’s sin (John 9:2-3). Sometimes stuff just happens, not because our parents drank or smoked too much or were too closely related or too young or old or too stressed, but just because it happens. Not very theological, I know (if I were to give an explanation, it would be more scientific than theological, about random mutations in genes which sometimes lead to useful adaptations and sometimes to harmful defects), but the short version is: not everything that happens to us is a result of something we (or our parents) have done wrong.
Paul, you recently wanted to know why we become patreons. Well for me, this is why. I want to contribute towards you continuing to write truth with grace and expose unreality. Debunking the doctrine of original sin in a clear and gracious way is a splendid example of escaping to reality. Let the Father’s blessing shine on you. Mia
Thank you so much, Mia. I appreciate your feedback and support.
Your perspective also indirectly resolves the issue of babies or toddlers, etc, who die going to heaven rather than condemned to hell or needing some kind of infant “intervention” aka baptism, etc.
Indeed. One of the bizarre things about those preaching original sin is with one breath they say babies are destined for hell (which is what Augustine taught), but with the next breath they contradict themselves inventing all sorts of reasons why that can’t be true (which it isn’t).
Paul you sound like a psychologist, and also like inclusionist…
If you have come to that conclusion you have seriously misread me. Your rather long comment only confirms this. As I say, the issue is not whether fallen men are sinners in need of saving, but whether they inherited a sinful nature from Adam. Look at the table in the article and tell me which point you disagree with, and I would be happy to discuss that.
I also reject the doctrine of “original sin” as described similarly by the Catholic Church and many Protestant denominations. In fact, it’s not even an Orthodox concept. In Orthodox belief, people are created by God innocent, born into a fallen world where all eventually sin and develop a sin nature. The only way to redemption from this state is to be born from above (aka born again). This is not Inclusionism, aka “historical reconciliation.” Inclusionism is a philosophy that all people are born saved. It’s an illogical concept since to he “saved,” one needs to be saved from something. Babies do not need to be saved until they have chosen to sin.
I have long felt that the doctrine of original sin was wrong. Sometimes I just know some doctrine or tradition isn’t right (my spidey sense) but can’t explain why, or at least not articulate it well. Thank you for writing about this. I look forward to reading your book. You have the ability to separate God’s truth from error and to explain it in ways that are easy to understand.
I welcome different points of view, but long comments arguing about other topics don’t get published. Thanks.
With love and respect, I think this is one of your logically looser and lower-quality positions. Sincere Regards.
Well at least you didn’t say it was unbiblical. 🙂
Hi Paul! I appreciate you sharing some snippets from your forthcoming book.
A quote in this book: “We are not born corrupt but we become corrupted by the deceitful desires of the old self (Eph. 4:22), the pollutions of this world (2 Pet. 2:7, 20), and tradition and religion (1 Pet. 1:18–19).” Whether we are born corrupt or “become” corrupted is inconsequential in mu opinion. Is any actually “hurt” because we are corrupted at some point after birth rather than at birth itself? Thanks Paul
I see two issues: (1) Because of Adam, humanity was born under the condemnation of sin and in need of a Savior. I think everyone here agrees on that. (2) Because we were born in a fallen world, it did not take long for us to get good at sinning. This is the bone of contention between me and Augustine. Is this inconsequential? Well tell that to those who have lost babies. (Augustine said their babies went straight to hell.) Tell that to those who have been told since childhood that God hates them. Original sin has nothing but bad fruit.
Original sin in no way leads to the conclusion that God hates us from the time we were born. Then would it not follow that God would hate us “somewhere along the line”?
I’m not on board with this
I don’t believe God hates anyone. “For God so loved the world.” But the originator of this doctrine, in his work On Merit and the Forgiveness of Sins, and the Baptism of Infants, wrote that babies are “manifestly in danger of damnation” on account of original sin.
In many ways, it seems like a moot point, but I see another important difference. It comes down to, is there any good in you at all? Or is there still the good that God created, but it has been corrupted? It makes a difference in who you really are.
Jesus once said a phrase that piqued my curiosity, “If you who are wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children…” (Matthew 7:11). First, he recognizes that we are all depraved, but then acknowledges that we do good things.
I think that we have been corrupted, and even our “good deeds” are not truly “good” because we corrupt them, but that we still have the capacity for good. God redeems us to bring us back to his original intent for us. Much of what is in us is the good that God created, but adulterated.
I know the Bible uses the metaphor of a new life, but the “you” that was born into sin is the same “you” that has been renewed into eternal life. “Original sin” seems to me to make the old you irredeemable, but there must be something that remains, or you wouldn’t be you. The garment is not the problem; the problem is that it is so stained that it would take a miracle to cleanse it. To borrow from Hans Gruber, “You ask for a miracle? I give you the crucifixion.”
Right Allen, and in view of Jesus saying we are” wicked”, he very much was meaning/referring to man after the fall. This was part of the long teaching on the mount called “beatitudes” , which means “attitudes” which we are to “be” in us, getting them ready for the conversion, For “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? Jeremiah 17:9 Yet Jesus knew what was in man, John 2:24,25, and was his reason for both his obedience, and enduring the cross, Romans 5:19, Hebrews 12:2.
Gruber said it well, but Paul said it better and was Gruber’s inspiration, “ I am crucified with Christ, never the less I live” Galatians 2:2, meaning death to the old nature, as per 2 Corinthians 5:17, from old to new, from being born in Adam, to being born in Christ. which is a miracle!
Agreed. This doctrine is one of the biggest cancers in the church and has done more harm to the mission of the Kingdom than any other doctrine. Only now are significant numbers of Christians and churches walking back this misconception of God and Humanity. In fact, if one believes this doctrine, that babies are born inherently evil, then one must also consistently believe that God creates evil things – also a total failure to understand Gods nature as described in scripture. Related to this, if one believes that God creates evil people, then one must also believe that salvation saves us from God – also a total failure of biblical reason. Come on church, it’s not rocket science. God is good. He only creates good things. We are the ones that inject bad into the equation!
Before adam disobeyed, GOD had already prepared Jesus to save. He knows the end from the beginning. Those he foreknew he also destined to be transformed to look like his Son Jesus. People are born sinners according to romans 5:19. Very clear. But because the Lamb was slain before the creation of the world for us, we don’t stay sinners, at the set time of God we believe and are made righteous. Its all Gods grace.
Romans 5:19 says “many were made sinners.” We are not made sinners because of a sinful gene but because of Adam’s transgression (see Romans 5:18). More here.
Thank you paul. But how do you explain psams 51:5.
Please see this recent article.
I was just reading in Deuteronomy this morning and found a verse that supports this perspective that Paul is sharing about original sin and supports the idea that young children who die are not condemned.
“And as for your little ones, who you said would become a prey, and your children, who today have no knowledge of good or evil, they shall go in there. And to them I will give it, and they shall possess it.”
Notice the phrase, “knowledge of good and evil”, it’s the same phrase used when Adam and Eve sinned and their “eyes were opened”. That was the devil’s deception for Adam and Eve. He made it seem desirable to have knowledge of good and evil, and that is how they lost their innocence.
That is an interesting verse, isn’t it, and straight from the mouth of the Lord. Original sinners use that verse to justify the age of accountability myth, as though the sin gene were dormant for a time and God ignores it. But that verse tells us that the knowledge of good and evil is not innate but acquired. A sinful nature is not inherited but learned. As the Scriptures say again and again, we become corrupt and go astray. We’re not born corrupt.
Exactly, and thank you for the added perspective!
The verse does not say anything about being born sinners. That is an interpretive leap made based on it saying being made sinners. There are many verses that suggest we are not born that way but made that way due to corruption in the world and gaining “knowledge of good and evil”.
Wow, I never thought I’d disagree with you DPE, I love your intentional grace-application for how it lifts people up, but on this one item, I do disagree. Here is my case, and perhaps more importantly, my “why” for stating it (next-to-last comment below).
We all look like our parents because we were born “in their image, in their likeness” just like Seth was born “in the image and likeness of Adam” (Ge: 5:3) – not God. Why? Because only Adam was directly assembled by God’s own hands.
How else can it be that we are born “in Adam,” if not for original sin?
Why would we need to be “born again,” if we weren’t born “lost?”
King David didn’t know biology, and got it wrong when he assumed God personally assembled him with his own hands, but David got it right when he stated he was “born a sinner – from the time [his] mother conceived [him],” Psalm 51:5 consistent with the concept of of original sin.
I know your heart Dr. Ellis, to do good and lift people up.
But HOW CAN PEOPLE OF FAITH MINISTER TO NON-BELIEVING PARENTS OF BIRTH-DEFECTED CHILDREN IF WE SUGGEST “God DID this,” versus the truth that it is the effect of The Fall – original sin?
And doesn’t the obvious fact of the differences between us all (think of “superior” athleticism or intellect versus “inferior” traits) suggest that God plays favorites, if his own hands personally assemble each of us? I find it hard to reach another conclusion within the “hand-made” view of these things.
Love and appreciate you DPE
If you’re open to it, I have answers to all your questions Jim, but there’s no space for it here. If you don’t see the book, look out for other articles in this series. For now, I’m not sure why you would consider blaming God for birth defects. We live in a world marred by sin, as you know. It seems you are equating the Fall of Genesis 3 with Augustine’s doctrine of original sin. May I encourage you to think about these issues separately, because only one is Biblical. The other is based on an old Jewish belief about our inherited inclinations.
Well my intent is the opposite – to NOT blame God – but I feel the individually hand-assembled view of each human leads precisely there. If one mother brings forth a perfectly healthy child, and the mother next door gives birth to a child that is blind, has Down Syndrome, a heart defect (or on and on), do we tell the 2nd mother that God hand-assembled them both? This is the view that I think blames God, is cruel, and keeps unbelievers from believing. Thank you, Paul.
The Creator designed the biological process by which humans reproduce and he did a terrific job. In fact, everything the Creator made was good. But just as we can’t blame God for polluting the beautiful planet he gave us, we can’t blame him for other things that went wrong after we opened the door to sin. But these things can be attributed to the Fall.
Original sin is different. Original sin says man was essentially redesigned after the Fall and now we are made in the image of sinful Satan. Somehow Satan got his hands on the DNA and did a bit of editing. We don’t have horns and tails, but we all have Satan’s rebellious streak. Nothing in scripture supports this blasphemy.
Why do children need to receive Christ if there is no imputed sin?
For the same reason anyone needs to receive Christ – to receive new life.
Dr. Ellis, was your reason (your “why”) for setting forth this position due to discomfort over the notion of children being sinful from birth (touched on above)? For my part, I am completely certain that no children ever go to hell, regardless of “confession unto repentance” or not. (A bit long to explain how I got here). Anyway, I’m sure that notion upsets some, but I am comfortable (and feel I have scriptural basis) with the fact that we’re born “dead” (Ge: 2:16, John 5:24 and 8:24), and yet children are not hell-bound. It seems if Jesus had your view, he would have told Nicodemus to clean up his act (John 3), because he “became” sinful in the process of time, whereas his instruction for Nicodemus to be born “again” (not natural birth twice over, but spiritual birth – because we’re born spiritually dead) points to “sin” as a condition we’re born in w/o volition, versus “sins” – rebellion by conscious choice to God’s laws. We have more than a “sin problem,” which repentance and good deeds can resolve, but we have a “death problem” which only faith in Christ’s atonement can resolve. (BTW: The only thing I know about Augustine is how to spell it). 🙂 Bless you sir!
As I say in the table (in the article above), humanity’s problem is that we are born dead in sin. This is why Christ came to give us new life and why we all need to be born again. I did not reject the doctrine of original sin because of my children, but because the more I studied it the more I saw discrepancies with the Bible.
A good sign that a teaching is unscriptural is (a) it’s not in the Bible, (b) it contradicts the Bible, and (c) it leads to illogical conclusions. Original sin fails all three tests. There is not one scripture that says we inherited Adam’s sinful nature, plenty that say otherwise, and those who believe in original sin – which says children go to hell – don’t believe children go to hell. God bless you too.
…or the corruption taking place over time isn’t an issue of Nicodemus needing to clean himself up and may fit more with Nicodemus having committed spiritual suicide and needing to be reborn?
Wow, Paul! I’ve been wrestling with this one for a long time ~ God bless you abundantly for publishing what you have. Most of Christendom is based on this concept ~ and yet God’s Love for us has always been Bigger, Better, and more powerful than any man-developed theology. Thank you for your faithfulness. Deirdre M.Rogers
Interesting…but how does this new info affect and effect me if I believe your book?
As I explain in the opening chapter of the book, original sin has a profound effect on the way we see ourselves, our neighbours, and our children.
What’s the difference?;
“we’re sinful” and “we’re dead in sin”, as one is a label, the other is the effect of such label.
“Adam” and “The devil”, as both are to be blamed, as both there. Sure Adam tried to blame Eve (Genesis 3:11), as “Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived What’s the difference? :
was in the transgression” (1 Timothy 2:13,14, 2 Corinthians 11:3), yet he did also partake in this sin, thus speaking of us too, “who were dead in trespasses and sins” Ephesians 2:1.
“A new nature” and “A new life”, As new life in Christ brought forth that ability to partake in this, new to the world, divine nature.
Basically, “All unrighteousness is sin”: and “All have sinned” yet Christ righteousness we obtain through faith in/by his taking on sin, “who his own self bare our sin on his own body on the tree, that we being dead to sin should live unto righteousness…” 1 Peter 2:24
We know that whosoever is born of God sins not; but he that is begotten of God keeps himself (through partaking of the divine nature, 2 Peter 1:4) and that wicked one touches him not.” 1 John 5: 17,18.
Again, as God told Adams offspring, Cain; “…, sin is lurking at the door; and its desire is for you, but you must master it.” Genesis 4:7.
“It” was Cain’s SIN nature, we all have (Romans 3:23), that wanted to control his actions.
Disallowing original sin seems akin to universalism.
Don’t confuse sinful with original sin. All have sinned, and those without Jesus remain dead in sins. Romans 5 explains this well. Original sin is something different (see comments above).
Colossians 1:21 also backs up what you;re saying. It was only “in our minds” that we are alienated from God
That’s a great verse, Helen. Colossians 1:21 says “you were formerly alienated and hostile in mind, engaged in evil deeds.” The hostility that we thought was between us and God was all in our heads. We thought God hated us but Jesus came to tell us that he loves us. However, the alienation was very real.
The word used in scripture to describe a believer’s union with the Lord is koinonia. The corresponding word for the unbeliever is apallotrio which means alienated or non-participant. Someone who resists the Spirit of life is disconnected from the life of the Spirit. He is excluded or alienated from the life of God (Eph. 4:18, Col. 1:21, 1 John 1:3). He is not a branch connected to the life-giving Vine but a stick with no lasting life in him.
Right, Colossians 1: 21, speaking of this alienation, and lack of peace (of mind?) was only cured, “through the blood of his cross, by Him (Jesus)” verse 20. As what do you think this blood was for? “for without shedding of blood there is no forgiveness” Hebrews 9:22. Forgiveness for what? As were did this alienation come from and why would John declare; ““Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” John 1:29.
Here it is in scripture;
“But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” which shows it was for our sin’s Jesus died. And, “If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.” For, “He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only (those that believe, who no longer resists the Spirit of life, but are now connected to the life of the Spirit, and no longer excluded or alienated from the life of God) but also for the sins of the whole world.”, as Adams sin effected all. Romans 5:8, 1 John 1:10, and 1 John 2:3. Thanks
None of that applies to original sin though. We are not born with a knowledge of good and evil. We learn it. The acts of sin are not what condemn us. Unbelief is what condemns us. Jesus didn’t die for our sins, He died for us to redeem us from corruption.
Brandon to say death is not corruption is a stretch, for that is why Christ died to deliver us from death unto life eternal. Believe what you want, but these scripture are totally related, and to say “acts of sin are not what condemn us. Unbelief is”, know that unbelief is sin, and against the command of God 1 John 3:23, for “ Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.” Hebrews 3:12.
You say; “Jesus didn’t die for our sins,”? No, just opposite, as “Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures” 1 Corinthians 15:3.
But right, ”He died for us to redeem us from corruption”, which is results of sin.
You have to pay attention to wording. I said “acts of sin”. Unbelief is not an act (read deed). Unbelief is a state of mind, and yes it is sinful, but our deeds do not separate us from God. Unbelief separates us from God. What I meant about Jesus not dying for our sins I should have worded better. I meant that his primary motive was to redeem us from corruption and make a way for relationship, not simply wiping away sins but to bring us to the Father. I meant it is more than just dying for sins.
Brandon, sure ‘rejecting’ is an action, yet so is the opposite, that of ‘believing’, as recall what Jesus answered to those who asked what shall we “do” (as acts of work) and he said “This is the work of God, that you believe on him whom he has sent.” John 6:28,29. Basically, what is the difference between unbelief and rejection, they both get one condemned, “He that believes on the Son has everlasting life: and he that believes not (rejects) the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abides on him.” John 3:36. As here Jesus combine’s both rejecting and receiving (which includes believing, John 1:12) in one scripture; “He that rejects me, and receives not my words (unbelief), has one that judges him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day.” John 12:48.
Do these not seem to be saying that, not obeying Gods command to believe, is such sinful behavior? Thanks
and thank you Paul.
I see your point in this regard, but what it comes down to is that unbelief and rejection of Jesus are what a state of “sinfulness” is based on. It isn’t based on particular actions of sinful behavior.
I should probably amend what I said about unbelief. It is a state of mind, but rejecting Jesus is an action, but that is what condemns someone, not deeds of sinful behavior.
All men who are born physically inherited a tendency to sin i.e. a sinful nature from Adam. Even Jesus! That was why the devil tried to tempt Jesus to sin during His trials in the desert. However, Jesus rejected His manly sinful nature & chose His spiritual nature to overcome all temptations instead. God bless you Paul for this teaching!
But Jesus was not born with a sinful nature. Or, if I am wrong, please prove me.
Right, “Jesus was not born with a sinful nature” like us, as he had his Father’s pure untainted blood line, (as the blood goes through the father’s), yet had his mothers flesh. This flesh is what Jesus had to contend with, . “Finding himself as a man” Philippians 2:7, or how “He was rich, yet for your sake’s He became poor,” 2 Corinthians 8:9, which the devil was trying to exploit. If he had our blood, it would have been easy for the devil to tempt him, but this triumph over temptation is what we “that believe” also have, now that we participate in this, “divine nature” 2 Peter 1:4. For as he is so are we in this world, 1 John 4:17.
Except, the Word says that he was tempted in every way as we are. We aren’t born tainted. We are born weak and exposed to taint that we are susceptible to and need divine intervention to save us from it. Jesus wasn’t half human. He didn’t have a sin nature because he never became tainted by sin. However, he didn’t have his mother’s flesh either. The Holy Spirit didn’t fertilize Mary’s egg with divine insemination. It said she was found to be with child. Jesus took on human flesh and was placed in Mary. Some of the verses you reference even support this perspective. Royal bloodlines are not just reckoned through fathers. Lines of inheritance with royalty are also based on the mother’s bloodline. As Jesus earthly mother, meaning she gave birth to him, like a surrogate, and his earthly father Joseph, both of their bloodlines went back to King David, but Jesus also had a divine bloodline. Regardless, he defeated sin and resisted temptation because he never gave into sin, not because of how he was born.
New International Version
12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood,(A) but against the rulers, against the authorities,(B) against the powers(C) of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.(D)
How does one know that God has blood thought his veins.
As he is Spirit?
God the Father and the Holy Spirit do not have “blood” but Jesus most certainly did, as the Bible clearly describes in many verses.
Hi. Yes Jesus did have but not the father. So how can it be the blood line of the father to Jesus?
Brandon, this is why we can say that Jesus was not under this scripture (yet true for the rest of us) that; “all have sinned”? No, he did no sin because “The Holy Spirit did fertilize Mary’s egg with divine insemination”, making him both God and man, for Jesus never sinned, 1 Peter 2:22.
But that is just the point, if we do not have a sin nature at birth (the human race sinning in Adam) then what made Jesus different, and not under the same wages of death?
For, in the case of Jesus there was no human father to pass it on, since the blood is passed on through the father, and is what allowed Him to be the only human being conceived since Adam and Eve’s fall not to have a sin nature. Jesus defeated sin and resisted temptation because he never gave into sin, not in spite of, rather because of, how he was born!
Christ had both divine person hood and genuine humanity, Christ in his human nature succumbed to his intervening divine nature such that he was, as a complete person. We too are complete in him, being able to participate in this “divine nature” that was Christ’s. For as he is, so are we in this world, 1 John 4:17, so as to escape the corruption that is in the world through lust (or sin nature). 2 Peter 1:4.
The point was simply that Jesus was not descended from Adam. Regardless of the how, we agree on that.
As I have been contemplating all of this and reading your book, it occurred to me that this teaching explains the answer to a difficult question if one believes in Original Sin. If Adam and Eve’s sin created some kind of sin gene, meaning they were not created with a sin gene, why would they choose to sin? If people only sin because they are sinners, why did Adam and Eve sin? They were led astray. They were corrupted. They chose to sin and received knowledge of good and evil as a result. This knowledge that the devil portrayed as a good thing was in fact a curse, not a blessing. As a result we all get this same “blessing” because of the continuing corruption, not because we were born with corruption in us but because of corruption in the world through the devil and Adam.
That’s it. Paul says Eve was deceived by the serpent and then warns us against similarly being led astray (2 Cor. 11:3).
Good stuff, and it makes so much of the Bible make more sense.
So, I see as I am reading that a lot of things that occurred to me are things you end up covering, but that is encouraging that the light bulb is coming on in a way that fits and makes sense with what you are describing and brings “conviction” of truth.
Was there not sin even before Adam and Eve sinned. There was already a tree of good and evil in the garden. If they ate from tree of life they would live forever. If they eat from tree of good and evil they would die.
No. Everything God made was good. See also Romans 5:12.
Yes we know whatever God creates is good. When he created Satan he created him very good for the purpose he was created. Let’s look at
John 8:44,- “You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.
So the tree of good and evil was created good as God created it for THAT purpose.
I’ve heard some teach that there actually was nothing special about the tree. God could have pointed to any tree. It, then, wouldn’t be the fruit of the tree that was sinful, but the act of eating. (Although, I would say that the sin was actually before that. It was humans putting themselves in the position of judge over God, where they decide if God was right about the tree or not.)
Another possible way of looking at this is that the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil was not in and of itself evil. What if God did intend for us to learn about good and evil, just not yet. We always think of innocence, but the Bible often talks about maturity. What if the idea was to raise Adam and Eve to the point where they could handle it and then introduce it.
Allen, it was not just any tree, it was the tree that, as the devil lying to Eve, put it, “God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil. “ So, it had to be special for the devil to “capitalize” on it, to destroy (John 10:10) Gods creation through deception, leading to disobedience. But right, as you well noted; “wouldn’t be the fruit of the tree that was sinful, but the act of eating.”
Gods command was only, “do not eat”, so Adam’s “act” was act of disobedience eating the forbidden fruit, as conversely, Christ’s “act” was act of obedience, dying on the cross.
Just as James showed the importance of act’s (works) to show ones faith as in (Jesus obedience), so also in (Adams disobedience) James 2:18, Romans 5:19.
“I was alive once without the law, but when the commandment came, sin revived and I died.”
Romans 7:9 NKJV
The apostle Paul knew the sin nature is passed on to every person born into the world as “in Adam”. There is a difference between being in Adam and being in Christ. Adam is a type of Jesus (Rom 5:14). Being in Adam is the condition you are in before you accept Christ Jesus as your Savior and is representative of all those that haven’t yet accepted Jesus. But here is where people get messed up. The sin nature passed on from Adam lies dormant (that’s why Paul says it’s revived when the command comes) and is NOT held against innocent babies and children. Aborted babies go to Heaven. Children do eventually grow up and understand that they are sinning against God and need a Savior…..they are without excuse (Rom 1:20)…..the awareness of God and the witness of creation that there is a God is built into every man. Our loving Heavenly Father gives everyone a choice whether they want Him or not. He doesn’t force Himself on anybody. So the key to the question is understanding that where there is no law there is no sin. The sin nature is there but it’s not held against those that have not yet come to the conscious awareness of God and their inherent need of a Savior.
When Paul says sin revived, he means the law gave him the knowledge of sin. “Through the Law comes the knowledge of sin” (Rom. 3:20). Formerly, he did not know that coveting was a sin, but the law taught him otherwise. When Paul discusses sin in Romans, he is not referring to sinful inclinations within us but a power which has an agenda and desires to destroy us. When do we encounter the temptations of sin? In our flesh. Our minds and bodies are the battleground where we engage with sin.
The phrases “sinful nature” or “sin nature” are not found anywhere in the Bible. Original sin is an invention of man. What did Paul preach? See the table in the article above.
“In the past all of us lived like them. We lived trying to please our sinful selves. We did all the things our bodies and minds wanted. We should have suffered God’s anger because we were sinful by nature. We were the same as all other people.”
Ephesians 2:3 ICB
Most every translation refers to the sin nature….it’s pretty plain to see and would be pretty tough to explain away.
You’d have a hard time also trying to convince parents that would be honest with you and people that are around babies alot (beautiful but can be very self-centered….did they learn that from their pure sinless nature?) and raised children (did you have to teach them to lie?….or take something that didn’t belong to them?…..that their children already have a pure and sinless nature and can be left alone….they’ll be fine and don’t really need to be taught about their need for the Savior and become a new creation in Christ Jesus with a new righteous, forgiven, sinless nature….
I’m not defending original sin and people that say all babies that die go to hell….David lost his baby that died and went to Heaven and he said he’d go to be with him. I’m just defending what the Word says and teaches. You’re right, the law gave Saul or Paul (depending on when in his life it happened to him) the knowledge of his sin and sinful nature (noun not verb) and his need for Jesus as his Savior…..up until that happens, sin is not held against them. When a child understands he or she is sinning against God and is of understanding because the law
does it’s job of showing him of his need for a Savior, then he is held accountable before God. When he receives Jesus, that old sin nature is circumcised or cut away and he becomes a new creation in Christ. His old sinful nature is not renewed….it is totally done away with and he is given a completely brand new sinless nature/spirit that is one with Jesus. Until that time, sin is not held against him…..
Fair enough, Mike. I do believe there is such a thing as a sinful nature, but it is learned rather than inherited.
I have a whole chapter on selfish children in the book, but the short version is their selfishness is a learned behaviour. A two-year-old has had two years of being waited on hand-and-foot. Babies cry to get their basic needs met. This is how God designed them. That pattern of make-a-fuss-get-what-I-need gets reinforced again and again and the result is a selfish toddler. When they reach a certain age, we teach them self-control and consideration for others. You don’t need a sin gene to explain this process.
With all due respect, it’s kind of a stretch to believe that God would design fuss and complain to get your needs met into babies just doesn’t sound right….their behavior is a result of the fall of Adam….they don’t have time to learn it….
Hi Mike, you raise a lot of good points some of which I have addressed in the comments above. I shouldn’t have started the thread on babies as I will have an article on that later. My bad. But a quick response: God designed babies with an inbuilt alarm system to keep them alive. A crying baby is a gift from God, not Satan.
Mike, a lot of what you refer to is in Paul’s book where he addresses those issues. I had a few questions also as I began reading, but covers it really well.
Thank you for the expose. I have a question. Why was it necessary for Jesus to be born of a virgin and without a human seed fertilizing the egg in Mary’s womb? And in addition to that, why must one be born again?
The virgin birth was essential because only a free man can ransom a slave. Adam’s race were enslaved to sin, but Jesus is not part of Adam’s race. He came from outside the prison to redeem us. I have a whole chapter on the virgin birth in the book. It’s far more important than we give it credit for.
Why we born again? Because you need new life. Jesus did not come merely to give us a new nature, but a whole new life – his divine and eternal life.
This teaching is so freeing. It allows one to see God for who He is…a good God who made us in His image and likeness. You are the 2nd person who I have ever heard teach this. I always thought that this was unfair… why should I pay for Adam’s sin but accepted it with gritted teeth because all the church world preached it and I was scared to question the doctrines of the church. It “original sin” made God seem like a harsh taskmaster who and put unrealistic expectations on people who couldn’t help themselves. Thanks again for being bold to share this unpopular view.
Hi Making God look mean if we inherited Adams sin, why? We saw in old testament that God dealt with Israel as a nation, all the good people who were obedient and did nothing wrong, they all were dealt with God’s punishment if Isreal did not obey. Just a thought.
I did not say that death was not corruption. Perhaps you misunderstood.
Perhaps I did misunderstand , yet your saying; ”He died for us to redeem us from corruption” (not sin), inferred it and I then retorted, “which corruption is results of sin, and death by sin,” thus; “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death (corruption) passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:” Romans 5:12.
But getting back to: “I should probably amend what I said about unbelief. It is a state of mind, but rejecting Jesus is an action, but that is what condemns someone, not deeds of sinful behavior.”
Sure ‘rejecting’ is an action, yet so is the opposite, and that of ‘believing’, as Jesus answered to those who asked what shall we “do” (as acts of work) and he said “This is the work of God, that you believe on him whom he has sent.” John 6:28,29. Basically, what’s difference between unbelief and rejection, they both get one condemned, “He that believes on the Son has everlasting life: and he that believes not (rejects) the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abides on him.” John 3:36. Here Jesus combine’s both rejecting and receiving (which includes believing, John 1:12) in one scripture; “He that rejects me, and receives not my words (unbelief), has one that judges him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day.” John 12:48.
Isn’t, not obeying Gods command to believe, such sinful behavior?
I just meant that his ultimate goal is to restore us to relationship with the Father, not simply address out sinfulness.
At one point in time it dawned on me; if a man and a woman believe, they become new creatures. They are regenerated. If these two new creations then produce a child, how is a sin nature transferred to it? Thanks for your explanation; it isn’t.
Pelagius, who was wrong about many things, made the same argument. If your parents were righteous, wouldn’t you inherit their righteous nature? Surely Jesus’ DNA is just as potent as Adam’s, if not more so. Augustine wriggles out of this by saying Christian parents transmit their sinful nature to children because they give them physical birth, not spiritual re-birth. Which is like saying your parent’s sin is greater than God’s grace or that First Adam did a greater work than Last Adam.
Excellent observation, and amen!
Awesome awesome Paul. It’s so uplifting right from the start. I pray I will have enough cash to support you and buy your book. Truly, truly, God bless you brother.
As I am reading your book, I was reminded of Proverbs 22:6
“Train up a child in the way he should go… and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” Sounds to me like Solomon is suggesting that our knowledge of good and evil, and what we do with it, is learned. It explains why some kids are pretty great and others are.. challenging.
Dear Paul I am not sure whether lm on Patreon or not. It’s because, l no longer see reduction. Am l going to receive a new book on original sin? I would like to
Hi Viki. The new book was released last week. If you can’t see it it may be because your card needs updating.
There is a distinction between a sinful or righteous state of being and the behavior that follows each. Sinful behavior is a fruit of the sinful nature. The sinful nature is the root or the source of the sinful behavior. Holiness or righteous behavior, is a fruit of our righteous in Christ state of being that we receive at the new birth. Our right standing with God is not learned behavior (that’s what religion teaches). The same is true concerning the sinful state of being that every person outside of Christ is in. People outside of Christ don’t have to be taught or learn how to sin or be sinful …..they just do it. They just are. Adam gave us his “gift” of a state of being outside of Christ. Again, it is not held against us until the commandment comes. At that point, everyone has a choice. All of humanity has a choice to remain in Adam, dead in their sins, or receive Jesus, total forgiveness of a lifetime of sin and that righteous state of being in Christ. Wonderful beyond words! Jesus makes available to all humanity His much more gift of righteousness that is not learned behavior but a state of being received by grace through faith….
I agree with some of your comments, but your general point doesn’t fit with “knowledge of good and evil”. It is acquired, not a “gift”. There are several verses that indicate that. Adam’s “gift” was for sin and corruption to enter the world, which does not take long for it to have its impact on us.
Right, my very thought’s! As for the law’s part, it merely revived what was already in man which Paul expressed in Romans 7.:28; “the law of sin which is in my members.” Which, as you concur with the Apostle; “People outside of Christ don’t have to be taught or learn how to sin or be sinful …..they just do it.” and why Jesus said; “he needed not that any should testify of man: for he knew what was in man.” John 2:25.
Jesus was so connected to Adam, that Paul also called Jesus the “last Adam”, because he (not like Adam) did it right , he did not sin, so was able to secure the whole world that had succumbed to this sin nature. So, “He made him who knew no sin, to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in him”, or this last Adam replacing the first Adam (2 Corinthians 5:17-21).
“For as in Adam all die”, seeing that death came by sin, his sin, we all then stand guilty before God, for we are sinners
This is the bad news, but the gospel, good news, is that we now can “partake in the divine nature”, or new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness , escaping Adam’s nature, From old man, to this new man, or new nature, or creature, created by God that we now may walk after the last Adam in righteousness and holiness, a way Adam lost for us.
Erm…..not sure about this at all, I like and appreciate an open,enquiring heart and mind before the Lord and have learnt over the years to not throw the “baby out with the bath waterin a knee jerk reaction to something”new”” when I or someone born again is newly enquiring,questioning or searching for deeper understanding about the Lord and if something is not of or from the Lord – Holy Spirit inspired then it does not stick. Paul as a fellow believer I do respect your heart towards the Lord however my gut flipped uncomfortably about this post and I am praying for you and that Holy Spirit will lead and inspire you on the right path to clarify what it is you are wanting to say with the Holy Spirit inspiration that you are getting because it is not coming across right at all in Jesus name. That’s all I am going to say .God bless
Hi Sally, I appreciate your prayers. I am always open to the possibility that I am wrong which is why I released this material privately on Patreon before I did so publicly. 40% of my patrons are ministers or church leaders and I thought they might be quick to see where I’ve gone wrong. In fact, the opposite proved to be true. Church leaders tend to shy away from debating minor controversial topics like original sin, but privately they write to me saying things like “I’ve always doubted original sin.” Original is more unpopular than I thought.
And while it’s true that controversial articles like this one attract critical comments (especially on social media), most of those comments do not address the issues being discussed. Take a look at the comment thread above. So far no one has argued that the yetzer hara of Judaism is unlike Augustine’s original sin. Whatever you believe about original sin, you would have to agree that it has more in commonn with the teaching of the rabbis, than the teaching of Jesus and the apostles.
Update: Oops, sorry, I thought this comment was under my more recent article on the Religious Origins of Original Sin, so that last remark won’t make much sense. But the point stands. Nearly all of the critical comments I have received have neglected to address the discrepancy between orginal sin and what the Bible actually says (summarized in the table above).
Sally, have you read the ebook yet? I was a little unsure also when Paul first introduced this topic, but I trust him and his writing in general sense, so I kept an open mind, and his explanations and analysis make sense.
This is why I have made no stoic or judgemental or critical or rejecting comment either way Paul and Brandon as I am passed and over being frightened of asking questions or voicing concerns and questions( or saying to fellow believers hey I am not sure about that just give me a minute with the Holy Spirit please )in the church setting or just taking what the “preachers and elders” are teaching at face value.This is why I said I respect Paul’s heart as with prayer and consulting with the Holy Spirit I have been blessed,inspired and enlightened a lot by Paul’s posts So please do not misunderstand me I do not need convincing about Paul’s heart or integrity and along with that I hope you do not misunderstand me as although I respect and champion what Paul hasbeen and is doing in Jesus name I only trust the Lord as with the best will in the world we are not trustworthy as I have and still get so many things wrong and misunderstand the Lord even with being spirit filled and devoted. So Paul I am for you in Christ Jesus ok ,just not sure about this so need to pray about it.God bless and keep going.
It’s all good, Sally. Jesus loves us regardless of our views on minor theological issues (or even major ones). If you don’t get a chance to see the book, note that I will post a few more articles here on E2R for all to see.
That was well said Sally. 🙂
Yes, all is good, I read your newest post and then this one. Bottom line, we want the same thing Jesus glorified and His word of grace and truth from ABBA God “outed” clearly,unfiltered and untampered,uncovered and unearthed
Thanks for your devotions. On the subject matter, kindly explain the below verses…
And finally, if our problem is not nature, why was Jesus Christ emphatic that we need to be born again if we are to see God’s kingdom?
Thanks for your comment. Those scriptures are covered in the book, and the answer to your question is in the table above.
Hi Paul, Sorry I’m unable to trace the answer. Kindly point it out for me.
Secondly, consider these verses from Romans 5:12,14-19… The Bible here, according to my understanding, shows that by one man, Adam, woe came to this world. And similarly, by one man, Jesus Christ, the blessing of salvation came to this world. In both cases, the children receive of the works of these two men, and they receive this by birth.
You are absolutely correct. Because of Adam, humanity was born under the condemnation of sin and death. Because of Last Adam, we can be born again into new life. This is what the Bible clearly teaches.
I have often heard as rationalization the statement that babies’ first words are often “mine!“ therefore babies are born selfish and demanding — sin nature. But of course, baby‘s first words will be “mine“ when a parent so often tells a child not to touch some thing because it is “mine.“ The parent may be doing this to either protect the child from something dangerous to their health, like a hot beverage or a food they’re not ready to eat, or to protect an item from damage at toddler hands. Regardless, the “mine!“ a toddler speaks as an early word is learned, not inherited.
I think the trouble is that people define all selfishness as sin – and then define all desire for one’s needs to be met as ‘selfish’. But newborn babies – before they are old enough to have learnt words or social behaviour, before they are capable of having any control over themselves, and before they are capable of going and fixing a meal for themselves – need to cry for their needs to be met. And adults judging them by adult standards think, ‘It would be unreasonable for an adult to expect to be waited on and have everything done for them, so if babies cry when we can’t get to them instantly, babies are selfish and therefore sinful and will go to hell if God does not forgive them for their wickedness.’ Which makes about as much sense as blaming the sky for raining on the laundry you’ve hung out to dry.
Actually, I define sin as selfishness (pretty much). This is very important when you look at your own life and actions. As for babies, in another thread we were talking about how babies, born into a fallen world, LEARN selfishness from birth, hence the universality of sin. That’s why Paul (the apostle) can say, “All have sinned and fallen short…”
Thank you for these articles! Apart from making their making more sense at a psychological level, the idea that we were born inherently evil and only Jesus was born inherently good does not make sense at a theological level. If Jesus were so totally opposite to us that his nature bore no resemblance to ours, how could he have been tempted to sin, and how can his managing to live a life fully in accordance with God’s will have been a triumph? If humans were fundamentally evil, then a wholly good Jesus could not have been really human, but only God-disguised-as-human, and therefore nothing he did could have any relevance to us. (Whether he would be able to empathise with us and know what it feels like to be us is another question – personally, I think that God already knew how it felt to be each of us, irrespective of having lived one lifetime as one specific human.)
One hyper-Calvinist book I once read even claimed that Adam and Eve were the only people ever to have had free will, and that not even Jesus had free will, because, just as we (according to Calvinist theology) are so biased towards sin that we are incapable of doing the right thing, so Jesus was so biased towards doing the right thing that he was incapable of ever doing the wrong thing. But this makes nonsense of the Bible’s teaching that Jesus was like us and yet was without sin.
Sure, Jesus was one mixed human, having His Fathers blood, yet his mothers flesh, thus God/man. To be sure though, this pure blood still had a fallen body, and “was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin” Hebrews 4:15. How, because “his nature bore resemblance to ours” because we have an high priest which can be touched with the feeling of our infirmities, for because Jesus “himself has suffered being tempted, he is able to succor them that are tempted.” Hebrews 2:18.
Really?, “God-disguised-as-human, and therefore nothing he did could have any relevance to us.” Scripture say’s; “Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;” Hebrews 5:8,9. Thus describing just what Jesus went through having participated in this human form, and to then receive his Father’s approval; “This is my Son in whom I am well pleased” Matthew 3:17, for such praise comes from obedience.
So, question would be more of a, why did he have to suffer, as Jesus life was no cake walk, and think it was because of Adam, and interesting Jesus was called the last Adam.
Jesus received the Father’s approval before he ever suffered or began ministry. The well pleased comment happened just after he was baptized. No suffering had taken place at that point. His obedience to that point may have been in getting baptized, but not much else had taken place, at least from a Biblical record perspective.
Right, yet up to that point he was being prepared for ministry, as he chose to endure an unpleasant, challenging process in His brief time on earth, to experience being one of us, and that’s what pleased God the Father to that point. leaving his glory he had with his Father before coming to Earth (John 17:5), is part of the suffering he endured, “Finding himself as a man” Philippians 2:7, or how “He was rich, yet for your sake’s He became poor,” 2 Corinthians 8:9. None of this would have been necessary had Adam not sinned, yet Jesus had to replace Adam, humbly becoming the last Adam. If death came upon all, is it any wonder that sin (which caused death) also came upon all, for scripture say’s, “all have sinned”. This must be by virtue of being part of humanity (the world, John 3:16), seeing that Christ is called the “last Adam”, thus; “For as by one man’s disobedience (first Adam) many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one (last Adam) shall many be made righteous.” Romans 5:19.”That as sin has reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord (Last Adam).” Indeed, grace reined, because sin reined, as the only hope for the world!
Please sir, what about Romans 3:23 For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God ? is it the sin Adam comitted that affected all to become sinners or the individual sin that make someone a sinner ?
I discuss that scripture in this article and on the Grace Commentary.
You said that, “Adam was neither righteous nor sinful, and neither are we.” If he was neither, then why would Jesus become the “last Adam” (1 Corinthians 15:45) if Adam never was righteous?
Why would he compare himself with Adam, does not this name of Jesus associate Him with Adam?
Sure, as Adam was the first to sin, connecting us with sinful Adam, for “All have sinned”. So then, Jesus came as the last man to be born without sin (1 Peter 2:22), thus, Christ (like Adam before the fall), was created perfect, and yet unlike Adam, never sinned. Therefore, his being this “last Adam” (Adam before the fall), allowed Him to be the perfect sacrificial “Lamb of God which takes away the sin of the world.”
First Adam was “a type of him who was to come” (Rom. 5:14). Just as first Adam’s offense had consequences that affected us all, last Adam’s obedience affects us all (1 Cor. 15:45).
I’m curious to learn how you think Adam became righteous.
Right, he was made “upright” (not righteous), proper, pleasing, more of an Innocence. But there still is that, not being righteous, nor sinner, yet something in between, innocent as a sacrificial lamb. But how did you get Adam was not sinful . For “… by one man sin entered into the world” and, “Because one person disobeyed God, many became sinners” Romans 5:12,19.
Adam became sinful when he sinned just like you became wet when you dived into the ocean. He was certainly not created a sinner by God. In Genesis 2, Adam was good and alive; in Genesis 3, he was dead in his sin.
No one was righteous before Jesus. Some, like Abraham, were credited with righteousness on account of faith, but Adam was not righteous with the righteousness that comes by faith in Christ. More here.
I have heard it taught that Jesus had to be born of a virgin because the sin nature is carried in the blood of the father, and only the mothers blood circulates through the fetus. It does seem that, the only way God could save us was through a perfect flesh and blood sinless Man, since he had given authority on the earth to man.
When it comes to the doctrine of original sin. I think it would be more accurate to say that through Adam we inherit a disposition where we are slaves to sin because we are separated from God and His holiness, instead of mankind inheriting a gene of sin that causes us to sin. That it’s our disconnection from God that gives us the inability to live in holiness. Without God we can only live in sin and for self. Also, it only makes sense that a Holy God would not change His holy standard of life just because we caused ourselves to become slaves to sin. Which is why we need a New Adam (Jesus) who has lived the holy standard to save us.
An inherited disposition or inclination to sin is the very definition of original sin, as defined by Augustine and Calvin. But I do agree with your second point that it is our disconnection from the Lord that causes us to sin and life for self.
Right, so it wasn’t something created or something given to us by God, but something that was passed down to us from being under Adam. A disunion from God that has affected all of our being, body and spirit. We are born dead to God under Adam. And born again with life to God under Christ. No one is born under Adam perfect and without sin.
Also, sinful influence is not the primary reason why mankind commits sin. It goes deeper than that. God reveals that sin ultimately comes from the heart of man. And it’s constantly revealed through scripture that no matter how much instruction and laws (His Holy Influence) God gives to His chosen people they never fully obey and do what is right. It’s stated again and again, “No one is righteous,” “no one does good,”and the law was given to those who are lawless/ungodly/sinners, not to those who are good/holy.
Can I just ask as I am feeling “thick” here. Before the fall was Adam right with God ,in right relationship with Him so was righteous and Jesus through what He did at the cross for us redeemed that righteousness for us with ABBA God or is Jesus’ righteousness separate from Adams righteousness before the fall?
When you put it that way, Sally, I’m inclined to agree with you. But at the same time, Adam had distrust in his heart that led him away from the Lord. He would not have heeded the serpent’s lies if he trusted the Lord.
I agree with you Paul that Adam and Eve had mistrust in their heart toward ABBA God to have been able to consider then fall for the devils insidious insinuations and alternative “ suggestions” and also asking again – before the fall were they righteous in right relationship with ABBA God or is Jesus’ righteousness that He came to redeem us back to from/ of ABBA God separate/different/higher ?
Interesting. If this is so how can it be explained how Jesus was able to remain sinless yet it is impossible for anyone to do the same? If all are born without sin than wouldn’t that mean we are all born perfect and only made sinful aka imperfect through our experiences of and in the world?
I think Paul explains this very well in Romans 5 when he speaks of the bondage or captivity of sin. When you are born in prison, it’s hard for you to be anything but a prisoner. You can pretend that you are free but you are not free. But Jesus, the free Man from heaven, came from outside the prison. Sin had no hold on him, which is why he could save us. Only a free man can ransom a slave. More here.
Yes I agree Paul,Adam and Eve lost,forfeited,gave up their right standing,glory with from ABBA God the moment they chose to “ hearken “listen to the devils insinuations,suggestions and “ go their own way” and that only Another who was sinless,righteous in every way ,fully God,fully man in order to represent man untainted not of or from the earth as it was fallen could redeem and restore legally,righteously,judicially man back to ABBA God as “ falleness ” cannot redeem ,make whole “ falleness “only “ wholeness” can make unwholeness whole again
Did Adam and Eve know what sin was?
Was there not sin before Adam and Eve sinned? There was already the tree of good and evil.
What did God say the punishment was if the eat from the tree of good and evil? was it not death?
Did Adam know what death was? Did anyone die before?
Adams punishment, was that the deal? if Adam knew this would he have eaten from the tree?? Now instead of death God said “Because you . . . took to eating from the tree . . . In the sweat of your face, you will eat bread until you return to the ground . . . For dust you are and to dust you will return.”—Gen. 3:17-19.
Eve’s punishment, was that the deal? if Eve knew this would she have eaten from the tree? Gen 3: 16 16 To the woman he said, “I will surely multiply your pain in childbearing; in pain you shall bring forth children. Your desire shall be contrary to[a] your husband, but he shall rule over you.”
And being kicked out of the garden.