09 June, 2009

Is the doctrine of original sin taught in the Bible?

The doctrine of original sin is taught in the Scriptures; the terminology was coined by St. Augustine. The Bible teaches that we all suffer from the stain and consequences of original sin. (See Genesis chapters 2-3) Because of original sin we are now all sinners and have lost all the things that God had intended for mankind against sin such as an enlightened intellect and the grace to control human passions. Scripture talks about the loss to humanity by original sin in the following verses:

(Psa 51:5 DRB) (51:7) For behold I was conceived in iniquities; and in sins did my mother conceive me.

(Wis 2:23 DRB) For God created man incorruptible, and to the image of his own likeness he made him.

(Wis 2:24 DRB) But by the envy of the devil, death came into the world:

(Rom 5:12 DRB) Wherefore as by one man sin entered into this world and by sin death: and so death passed upon all men, in whom all have sinned.

(1Co 15:21 DRB) For by a man came death: and by a man the resurrection of the dead.

(1Co 15:22 DRB) And as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all shall be made alive.

(Isa 43:27 DRB) Thy first father sinned, and thy teachers have transgressed against me.

What St. Augustine recognized and others is, that sin and death came into the world through Adam. Sin is a reality we cannot escape except by the saving grace of Christ through the Sacrament of baptism:

(Act 2:37 DRB) Now when they had heard these things, they had compunction in their heart and said to Peter and to the rest of the apostles: What shall we do, men and brethren?

(Act 2:38 DRB) But Peter said to them: Do penance: and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ, for the remission of your sins. And you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.

(Act 2:39 DRB) For the promise is to you and to your children and to all that are far off, whomsoever the Lord our God shall call.

(Act 2:40 DRB) And with very many other words did he testify and exhort them, saying: Save yourselves from this perverse generation.

(Act 2:41 DRB) They therefore that received his word were baptized: and there were added in that day about three thousand souls.

(1Pe 3:21 DRB) Whereunto baptism, being of the like form, now saveth you also: not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but, the examination of a good conscience towards God by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Truly the Scriptures teach the doctrine of original sin as well as the solution provided through God's grace with the Sacrament of baptism.

In Christ
Fr. Joseph

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