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The Original Sin and Ezekiel 18 
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So, I think we're all familiar with the concept of the original sin. Adam and Eve eating the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden, which apparently condemned all mankind.

I've been thinking about this today, specifically with regards to Ezekiel chapter 18. It always bugged me that we'd be condemned for what someone else did and I couldn't see how this could be justified or fair. And, in fact, Ezekiel 18, which contrasts and compares sinful fathers and righteous sons and righteous fathers and sinful sons and their impact on each other, makes it clear that it's not and that we are in fact not judged for the sins of others.

In fact, Israel is saying that the son should be punished for the sins of the father and that God is being unfair(Ezekiel 18:19a) to which God retorts (I like to think almost incredulously) "I'm unfair? Aren't YOU being unfair?" (Ezekiel 18:25).

I think Ezekiel 18 makes it pretty clear that what we're condemned for is our own wickedness. Yes, Adam and Eve introduced sin into the world because of Satan, but we are not condemned for their mistakes. The only sense in which the Original Sin would condemn us is if we see that example and do not turn from wickedness ourselves.

I don't subscribe to the theory that we're all born into sin, that we all have sin in our lives because of Adam and Eve and that we're judged because of them. I mean, God straight out says in Ezekiel 18:20 "The person who sins shall die. A child shall not suffer for the iniquity of a parent, nor a parent suffer for the iniquity of a child; the righteousness of the righteous shall be his own, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be his own."

God also makes it clear that he takes no pleasure at all in the spiritual death of anyone. In the last verses of the chapter He almost appears to be begging Israel not to make Him kill them.

Ezekiel 18: 31-32 "31 Cast away from you all the transgressions that you have committed against me, and get yourselves a new heart and a new spirit! Why will you die, O house of Israel? 32 For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone, says the Lord God. Turn, then, and live."

It's almost as though He's saying "Please don't make me do this to you."

Why then does this concept of the Original Sin damning us all continue to permeate through Christianity? Why do people seem to think that the Original Sin makes humans inherently sinful? Yes, we have free will but in Genesis 1 God made humans in His image and declared all creation to be good. I think that implies that we are inherently good. Yes there are people that turn from God but I don't see free will as being inherently sinful and I think the fact that so many people do turn to God and that there are so many good people in the world even if they aren't all Christians is evidence that we are inherently good.

God doesn't want to condemn us or kill us. He wants us to be with Him in heaven.

So why do we keep trying to portray Him as a bad guy? And why do we keep portraying humans as sinful and condemned already because of Adam and Eve? Especially in light of Ezekiel 18. I don't get it.

What do you all think?

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Mon Apr 24, 2017 2:41 am
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I've seen something similar in the Truth Project.
It was about the states of man:
In the beginning we would be "Innocent". We did not know sin. Then Satan came along and we were "Fallen". We got a sinful nature.
Through the Cross we could get back up and become "Redeemed", resulting to be "Glorified" after death. Only if we didn't accept the Cross we would become "Condemned".
I think that this is a slightly more correct world vision.

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Mon Apr 24, 2017 4:41 am
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I don't believe that Adam and Eve are literal historical persons, so that may color my interpretation, but I feel like they're an illustration of humanity as a whole. God told them "You could follow me, or you can make the choice to do your own thing." The original sin, in a sense, is the result of free will, and it's a choice we all make. And we all make the wrong choice sometimes, which is why we're all infected by original sin. Adam and Eve had free will. We have free will. Adam and Eve chose sin. We choose sin. Adam and Eve needed salvation. We need salvation.

This also helps account for people who die as fetuses or infants. They never got the chance to sin, so they are easily covered by grace.

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Mon Apr 24, 2017 12:18 pm
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That's an interesting way of looking at it, Sleet. Makes sense too. I have heard that the words "Adam" and "Eve" in the original Hebrew can be used to refer to men and women and not just a specific man and woman. I never looked that much into it though. And you're right, it does also allow for the Age of Understanding.

@D-Rainbow12346: I think you're saying kind of the same thing as Sleet, right?

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Mon May 01, 2017 7:26 am
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Well, I merely rephrased something I've picked up from a lesson of antrophology.
But it does involve that choice process, I guess.
So yeah, in a way we're saying the same thing.

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Wed May 03, 2017 8:38 am
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Here's what I believe:

"We believe that men shall be punished for their own sins, and not for Adam's transgression." - 2nd Article of Faith

My church teaches that the Fall was an essential part of God's plan for us. Sure, Adam and Eve transgressed God's commandment not to eat the fruit, but what would have happened if they hadn't? Surely all of humanity, unable to die, would not have fit in the Garden of Eden, and if they had, what would be gained from living in a state of naivety? God wants more from his children - he gave us free will; but what's the point of free will if you don't know the difference between good and evil? The only way for humanity to know good from evil was for Adam and Eve to eat the fruit of knowledge of good and evil, but doing so would bring sin and suffering into the world - with knowledge comes power, and with power comes responsibility - and with the devil about to tempt us not to be responsible, negative consequences occur. God didn't want to force them into that, but he knew that their choosing it was the only way they could progress. But, because God had known that man would fall, he had planned ahead and selected a Savior to redeem mankind - a perfect man - and whosoever should follow him would be saved in his kingdom.


Fri May 05, 2017 12:44 pm
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I imagine that even if they didn't fall, someone would have, right? It's not like the tree of knowledge of good and evil just vanished after they had kids.

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Sat May 06, 2017 10:49 am
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But, the Garden of Eden is protected by an angel. They only would have been able to get at the tree before leaving the garden. My reading has always been that they wouldn't have had kids before the fall as they were immortal.

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Sat May 06, 2017 12:17 pm
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They wouldn't have left the garden if they hadn't eaten the fruit though.

And yeah that's reasonable that they might not have had kids. Especially with the interpretation of the parallels between the fruit and sex.

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Sat May 06, 2017 12:37 pm
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So what's your take on the original sin versus our sin then, Francis?

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Sat May 06, 2017 1:17 pm
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*cracks knuckles*

Righty-ho:
First things first: the Fall, although sinful, does not make us sinful. The fall made us to be less than perfect. Original Sin is a Roman Catholic dogma with which I do not agree - it is the dogma that condemns babies who die within hours of their birth to limbo at best, hell at worst.

We are sinful, we are imperfect and it is part of our human state, but we are not born into sin, rather imperfection.

Sin is a choice, a distancing of oneself's from God.

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Sat May 06, 2017 2:27 pm
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CofEFur wrote:
*cracks knuckles*

Uh oh! This is getting serious! :P

CofEFur wrote:
Righty-ho:
First things first: the Fall, although sinful, does not make us sinful. The fall made us to be less than perfect. Original Sin is a Roman Catholic dogma with which I do not agree - it is the dogma that condemns babies who die within hours of their birth to limbo at best, hell at worst.

We are sinful, we are imperfect and it is part of our human state, but we are not born into sin, rather imperfection.

Sin is a choice, a distancing of oneself's from God.

That makes sense.
Still I wonder though. How does the Fall make us less than perfect? Surely it's our own choices that do that in the same way sin does?

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Thu May 11, 2017 7:51 am
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The fall gave us the ability to choose between good and evil. If we could not choose evil, we would be perfect, but we also wouldn't be able to prove ourselves or learn from our mistakes.


Last edited by Douglas Collier on Thu Jun 22, 2017 12:13 am, edited 1 time in total.



Sat May 13, 2017 12:26 am
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The thing is, Doug, the Fall WAS the original choice between good and evil. We already had free will so I'm not sure how the Fall can be said to have given us that choice. The Fall did give us a greater understanding of the choice though.

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Sun Jun 18, 2017 3:53 am
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Or you could go even further and interpret that it wasn't proper free will so much as demonic influence that caused the fall.

Which has the terrifying implications that we have the infernal to thank for our free will. :/

Not saying I believe it! Just food for thought though.

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