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Author Topic:   Is there Biblical support for the concept of "Original Sin"?
jar
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Posts: 31182
From: Texas!!
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Message 1 of 240 (589370)
11-01-2010 10:13 PM


A claim often made is that there is a Biblical supported concept of "Original Sin", and that the concept is basic to Christianity.

Most often the quote they point to is Romans 5 where Paul allegedly writes:

quote:
12 Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned—

13 To be sure, sin was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not charged against anyone’s account where there is no law. 14 Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who is a pattern of the one to come.

15 But the gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many! 16 Nor can the gift of God be compared with the result of one man’s sin: The judgment followed one sin and brought condemnation, but the gift followed many trespasses and brought justification. 17 For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ!

18 Consequently, just as one trespass resulted in condemnation for all people, so also one righteous act resulted in justification and life for all people. 19 For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.


Even in that passage Paul admits that he is being imprecise and inaccurate.

quote:

13 To be sure, sin was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not charged against anyone’s account where there is no law. 14 Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who is a pattern of the one to come.

So even Paul admits that sin existed before any law or commandment existed, but he provides nothing to support even that position.

The passage gets even more confusing because he then goes on to say that Adam is the pattern of the one to come.

It seems that Paul is making a claim that sin and death only existed because of Adam.

Well, if we actually look at the story in Genesis 2&3, does it support what Paul appears to be asserting?

Does Paul have some basis for the assertion in Romans 5?

Bible A&I likely


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!
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Message 2 of 240 (589534)
11-03-2010 9:03 AM


Thread Copied from Proposed New Topics Forum
Thread copied here from the Is there Biblical support for the concept of "Original Sin"? thread in the Proposed New Topics forum.
Havok
Junior Member (Idle past 3011 days)
Posts: 4
From: USA
Joined: 10-25-2010


Message 3 of 240 (589536)
11-03-2010 9:43 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by jar
11-01-2010 10:13 PM


Sin was entrampment
Hello,
Long time lurker.
Was actually planning on starting a thread on original sin as my first thread but figured I’d come in here to say my peace. As far as Paul goes, he places all his chips on the genesis story holding up. I look at the genesis account(s) rather differently; I see no wrong doing by Eve or Adam by eating the apple, and therefore see sin at best as non-existent at worst unjustly implemented. Let me explain what I mean.

Gen2 16 And the LORD God commanded
the man, "You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; 17 but you must not eat from the
tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will
surely die."

Gen3 4 "You will not surely die,"
the serpent said to the woman. 5
"For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and
you will be like God, knowing good and evil."

So from those two verses I infer that:
1. Man prior to "eating the apple" had no predisposition to or knowledge
of the concepts of "good and evil"
2. God willingly withheld the "knowledge" of "good and evil" when
creating man.
2a. Assertion 2 is backed up by the fact that the serpent was tempting
Adam and Eve with knowledge of good and evil, and would not be able to
do so if they already possessed such knowledge.

Adam and Eve were built incompletely, and were unable to handle making any informed decision in any matter regarding the morality of their decisions. Again remember
that these individuals apparently had never seen death (Bible says no
death prior to sin) so even gods not-so-veiled threat of death falls on
deaf ears because they would not fully understand what that was, and can
not be used to support the idea that Adam and Eve should have know
better(ie they knew the consequences). When you break this down god created an inefficient creation and then judges it unfairly.
My final assertion: God creating man and not giving him knowledge of
good and evil and then judging their actions (prior to gaining said
knowledge) as evil, well do I even need to finish this thought I think
at this point I've spelled it out pretty good, God's a dick, and Genesis
it the first "historical" case of entrapment.

I guess I can’t see how god can sit in judgment of a creation he made that was created unequipped to even understand the concepts of right and wrong and then grade them on those concepts. I can’t imagine your boss coming up to you in the morning and saying here is the MCAT good luck your job depends on it, and you happen to work at Wal Mart as a door greeter, not exactly up for the task at hand.


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nwr
Member
Posts: 5586
From: Geneva, Illinois
Joined: 08-08-2005


Message 4 of 240 (589553)
11-03-2010 10:49 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by jar
11-01-2010 10:13 PM


It has always seemed to me that Original Sin depends on a gross misreading of the Adam and Eve story. I see that as a story intended to explain what distinguishes humans from other animals. The "sin" bit is just there as a part of the plot.

My experience with preachers, is that they illustrate their sermons with many metaphors, and sometimes use exaggerated rhetoric when presenting those metaphors. And it seems to me that is about what Paul was doing in that oft quoted Romans 5 section.

In summary, no I do not find any biblical support for "original sin".


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Coyote
Member (Idle past 336 days)
Posts: 6117
Joined: 01-12-2008


(1)
Message 5 of 240 (589556)
11-03-2010 11:08 AM


Biblical support for original sin?
Biblical support for original sin?

The bible is a collection of books cobbled together from multiple authors writing over an extended period. Somewhere one of these authors, a shaman of some kind, came up with the idea of original sin--the idea that man is inherently evil. That in itself is about the most evil thing that shamans, a notoriously shabby lot anyway, have ever come up with. Other shamans passed this idea on and still others eventually incorporated it into what we know as the bible.

Ayn Rand has some thoughts on this, and says it better than I ever could:

What is the nature of the guilt that your teachers call his Original Sin? What are the evils man acquired when he fell from a state they consider perfection? Their myth declares that he ate the fruit of the tree of knowledge—he acquired a mind and became a rational being. It was the knowledge of good and evil—he became a moral being. He was sentenced to earn his bread by his labor—he became a productive being. He was sentenced to experience desire—he acquired the capacity of sexual enjoyment. The evils for which they damn him are reason, morality, creativeness, joy—all the cardinal values of his existence. It is not his vices that their myth of man’s fall is designed to explain and condemn, it is not his errors that they hold as his guilt, but the essence of his nature as man. Whatever he was—that robot in the Garden of Eden, who existed without mind, without values, without labor, without love—he was not man.

http://aynrandlexicon.com/lexicon/original_sin.html


Religious belief does not constitute scientific evidence, nor does it convey scientific knowledge.
kbertsche
Member (Idle past 362 days)
Posts: 1427
From: San Jose, CA, USA
Joined: 05-10-2007


(1)
Message 6 of 240 (589558)
11-03-2010 11:24 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by jar
11-01-2010 10:13 PM


quote:
Even in that passage Paul admits that he is being imprecise and inaccurate.

No, that's not what he says.

quote:
So even Paul admits that sin existed before any law or commandment existed, but he provides nothing to support even that position.

The passage gets even more confusing because he then goes on to say that Adam is the pattern of the one to come.

It seems that Paul is making a claim that sin and death only existed because of Adam.



No, you're missing the flow of Paul's argument in Rom 5:12ff. Try reading another translation:
NET Bible writes:


5:12 So then, just as sin entered the world through one man and death through sin, and so death spread to all people because all sinned – 5:13 for before the law was given, sin was in the world, but there is no accounting for sin when there is no law. 5:14 Yet death reigned from Adam until Moses even over those who did not sin in the same way that Adam (who is a type of the coming one) transgressed. 5:15 But the gracious gift is not like the transgression. For if the many died through the transgression of the one man, how much more did the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one man Jesus Christ multiply to the many! 5:16 And the gift is not like the one who sinned. For judgment, resulting from the one transgression, led to condemnation, but the gracious gift from the many failures led to justification. 5:17 For if, by the transgression of the one man, death reigned through the one, how much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one, Jesus Christ!


Here's my paraphrase/explanation of v. 12-14:

Sin and death entered the human race through Adam and Eve. All people are guilty of sin, hence all people die. People sinned between the time of Adam to Moses, before the law was given, but these sins could not be counted against them since they had not yet received the law. Yet they died anyway, and we know that death is the penalty for sin. So why did they die? Because even though they did not break a command like Adam did, they inherited the guilt that he incurred for doing so.

Edited by kbertsche, : No reason given.


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jar
Member
Posts: 31182
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 2.7


Message 7 of 240 (589569)
11-03-2010 12:07 PM
Reply to: Message 6 by kbertsche
11-03-2010 11:24 AM


Actually, we agree that it is likely that Pal is referring to the Garden of Eve story, however, reading it I find absolutely no support for the position that Adam or Eve were even capable of sinning until after they had eaten the fruit from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. They just plain did not have the tools needed to make decisions on right or wrong.

In addition, it clearly says that death is already in the world and that humans like anything else will die. Otherwise there was absolutely no reason to even create the Tree of Life.

We seem to agree that Paul is using Genesis 2&3, it is just that Genesis 2&3 don't support his argument.

Now, if he had made reference to the myth found in Genesis 4 I think he might have been able to make a better although still very weak case.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!
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ringo
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Posts: 17158
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 8 of 240 (589579)
11-03-2010 12:43 PM
Reply to: Message 6 by kbertsche
11-03-2010 11:24 AM


kbertsche writes:

Yet they died anyway, and we know that death is the penalty for sin. So why did they die?


That looks to me like a case of a false premise producing a questionable conclusion. We know that death is the penalty for sin? No, we don't know any such thing. Death is a natural consequence of life.

The Garden of Eden story is pretty vague about the Tree of Life. Pauls attempt to reason from the vague to the specific isn't very convincing.


"It appears that many of you turn to Hebrew to escape the English...." -- Joseppi
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iano
Member (Idle past 171 days)
Posts: 6165
From: Co. Wicklow, Ireland.
Joined: 07-27-2005


Message 9 of 240 (589585)
11-03-2010 1:03 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by jar
11-01-2010 10:13 PM


jar writes:

A claim often made is that there is a Biblical supported concept of "Original Sin", and that the concept is basic to Christianity

Could you perhaps (globally) define what you see the Christian concept of original sin to be? I mean, what kind of thing do you want to see the bible argue?

The essence of what I consider to be original sin is contained in the very section you quote: all men made sinners through the disobedience of Adam. I take it that your idea of original sin won't be just that.

"For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners".


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iano
Member (Idle past 171 days)
Posts: 6165
From: Co. Wicklow, Ireland.
Joined: 07-27-2005


Message 10 of 240 (589589)
11-03-2010 1:17 PM
Reply to: Message 7 by jar
11-03-2010 12:07 PM


jar writes:

Actually, we agree that it is likely that Pal is referring to the Garden of Eve story, however, reading it I find absolutely no support for the position that Adam or Eve were even capable of sinning until after they had eaten the fruit from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. They just plain did not have the tools needed to make decisions on right or wrong.

In the verse utilised in my post above, Paul refers to their disobedience. Disobedience, although deemed a sin, doesn't require that a person has a knowledge of right and wrong. You can pick up a knowledge of obedience and disobedience from the consequences that attach to actions rather than the morality which attaches to actions.

Edited by iano, : No reason given.

Edited by iano, : No reason given.


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jar
Member
Posts: 31182
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 2.7


Message 11 of 240 (589593)
11-03-2010 1:28 PM
Reply to: Message 9 by iano
11-03-2010 1:03 PM


iano writes:

Could you perhaps (globally) define what you see the Christian concept of original sin to be? I mean, what kind of thing do you want to see the bible argue?

The essence of what I consider to be original sin is contained in the very section you quote: all men made sinners through the disobedience of Adam. I take it that your idea of original sin won't be just that.

"For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners".

I think you very neatly summed up what I see as the Christian concept of Original Sin, it is based on a claim made by Paul taken out of context where it seems Paul is referring to the Genesis 2&3 myth.

In the verse utilised in my post above, Paul refers to their disobedience. Disobedience, although a sin, doesn't require that a person has a knowledge of right and wrong. You can pick up a knowledge of obedience and disobedience from the consequences that attach to actions rather than morality which attaches to actions.

And, as I pointed out, I can see no way that Adam or Eve were even capable of knowing they should obey until after they ate from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil.

We also know based on the story, that the consequences of their action were not as originally outlined by the character God, but rather an entirely different set of punishments. We also know that the consequences of their actions were exactly what was described by the serpent and NOT what had been described by the God Character. In addition there is no mention of some Original Sin that would then be inherited by others.

I agree that Paul made those claims, I simply do not see support in the Bible for his position.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!
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iano
Member (Idle past 171 days)
Posts: 6165
From: Co. Wicklow, Ireland.
Joined: 07-27-2005


Message 12 of 240 (589603)
11-03-2010 1:55 PM
Reply to: Message 11 by jar
11-03-2010 1:28 PM


jar writes:

I think you very neatly summed up what I see as the Christian concept of Original Sin

Okay.

it is based on a claim made by Paul taken out of context where it seems Paul is referring to the Genesis 2&3 myth.

The thread title asks for biblical evidence for the concept. What's wrong with Pauls statement as biblical evidence?

-

And, as I pointed out, I can see no way that Adam or Eve were even capable of knowing they should obey until after they ate from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil.

The word "should" implies a moral element to their choosing. I've pointed out that a disobedience doesn't necessarily require a moral element. They are told what to do, are told there are negative* consequences attaching to not doing and placed in the position of choice. No shoulds or shouldn't's need enter the frame in order that disobedience occur. And if disobedience then sin..

*God uses the word die which we must assume they understood to be at least a negative thing. If they didn't have some concept of death as a negative thing then we have no reason to suppose they had any understanding of any word. An assumption which renders discussion a bit pointless.

We also know based on the story, that the consequences of their action were not as originally outlined by the character God, but rather an entirely different set of punishments. We also know that the consequences of their actions were exactly what was described by the serpent and NOT what had been described by the God Character. In addition there is no mention of some Original Sin that would then be inherited by others.

Which is besides my point. My point merely had to do with clarifying the biblical evidence of Paul. Disobedience = sin. Disobedience not necessarily involving a knowlege of good and evil.

Edited by iano, : No reason given.

Edited by iano, : No reason given.

Edited by iano, : No reason given.

Edited by iano, : No reason given.

Edited by iano, : No reason given.


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kbertsche
Member (Idle past 362 days)
Posts: 1427
From: San Jose, CA, USA
Joined: 05-10-2007


Message 13 of 240 (589611)
11-03-2010 2:26 PM
Reply to: Message 8 by ringo
11-03-2010 12:43 PM


ringo writes:

kbertsche writes:

Yet they died anyway, and we know that death is the penalty for sin. So why did they die?

We know that death is the penalty for sin? No, we don't know any such thing. Death is a natural consequence of life.

Remember, I was summarizing Paul's argument. Whether or not you or I agree with his argument is irrelevant.

Paul established in v. 12 that death is the penalty for sin. So in v. 13-14 he has to explain why the people between the times of Adam and Moses died when they didn't actually break any laws. His argument seems to be that they incurred the penalty for sin by virtue of their being descendants of Adam.


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ringo
Member
Posts: 17158
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 14 of 240 (589615)
11-03-2010 2:56 PM
Reply to: Message 13 by kbertsche
11-03-2010 2:26 PM


kbertsche writes:

Remember, I was summarizing Paul's argument. Whether or not you or I agree with his argument is irrelevant.


Of course. I was simply suggesting that Paul's reasoning was flawed. If you agreed with him, your reasoning would be flawed too.

(Paul had already pointed out in Romans 2 that Gentiles keep the law by nature much as people did before "the law" was given to Moses. I think his point may have been more about everybody having the knowledge of good and evil rather than "inheriting" sin from Adam.)


"It appears that many of you turn to Hebrew to escape the English...." -- Joseppi
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frako
Member
Posts: 2814
From: slovenija
Joined: 09-04-2010


Message 15 of 240 (589620)
11-03-2010 3:16 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by jar
11-01-2010 10:13 PM


I think the whole christian community has it wrong adam did not sin at least not that bad that we should suffer for it all he got was the knowlage of good and evil and that made him capable of sinning if you do not know and cannot know something is wrong then who can blame you for doing it.

I think the first sin is the one of cain killing abel, though the christian bible says something like this god:" his blood is crying to me from the erth." Nothing epicly wrong whit it to damm us all, but the quoran says god:" his BLOOD'S are crying to me from the erth" implying he did not only kill able but also all of his decendants every child that abel would have and that is way more epicly wrong than killing one man. implying that we come from a mass murderer who killed half of the worlds population.

Edited by frako, : No reason given.


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