HOUSMAIL HM#082 - THE PROBLEM WITH "ORIGINAL SIN" 11 October 2001
The Roman Catholic doctrine of ORIGINAL SIN has been inherited under various guises, by its "daughters".
The Calvinist Reformed Churches call their version of it - "Total Depravity". Others call it "Sin Nature, or "Inherited Sin", or "Sin-in-the-flesh", etc. But although it has countless variations, at the bottom line it all amounts to approximately the same thing. i.e.
1. When Adam sinned, his nature was physically defiled and changed.
2. All Adam's posterity have inherited this same physical defilement.
3. There is now something in the "genetic makeup" of all men, (except Jesus) which makes it impossible for them to resist temptation.
4. The human race cannot
ever be free of this in-built "carnal nature" in this present life. Even
the redeemed are left to struggle along, still hopelessly enslaved to the
practice of sin for the rest of their mortal lives!
(Note --Rom 7:14 is usually quoted in support of this claim. But see HOUSMAIL No 49 for a much more satisfying explanation of what Paul really meant in this passage)
5. Only at the Resurrection
and Judgement, will the redeemed receive new bodies which CANNOT sin any
(Note -- If God really intended to make ROBOTS who no longer have a FREE WILL to express their love for Him by their choice to obey, why didn't He just do that in Eden -- without all the other "charade" in between?)
This of course leads to other false assumptions such as:
1. The Roman Catholic doctrine of the "Immaculate Conception", which was invented so that Mary, and then Jesus, could be born free of "inherited sin".
2. The Doctrine of the Trinity,
which says that Jesus, although "truly" man, COULD NOT SIN because He is
3. The alternative, common amongst non-trinitarians, that Jesus, as a man, inherited something "genetic" from his Father, which other men do not have, which gave Him some special "power to overcome".
(Sort of like some kind of God/Man "hybrid"!)
4. That God was so angry with "sin nature" that He had to be "appeased" by venting His "wrath" on Jesus before He could forgive us.
(Yes! Incredible as it may seem, there actually are people who promote this next one! I have met them!)
5. That the mere possession of a "defiled human nature", sinless or not, incurs the wrath of God! And that even a righteous man such as Jesus, deserved to die because of the nature He possessed! In this variation the death of Jesus is regarded as a sacrifice FOR HIMSELF! (By which He exchanged a potentially sinful body for one incapable of sin!)
Of course, NONE of these concepts is Biblical! The last, especially, is a seriously blasphemous denial of the love of God for His holy, harmless, undefiled, and beloved Son, in whom He was and is well pleased.
As for the others -- It won't do at all on Judgement Day to try to offer the excuse to God:
"My sins aren't MY fault -- I couldn't resist temptation because of the "sin nature" built in to this body YOU gave me"!
Nor, according to the GOOD NEWS, does it seem at all likely that God is going to wait THAT LONG to honour His promise to transform our minds, and create a NEW NATURE within these PRESENT mortal bodies! (Rom 12:3; Eph 4:20-24)