Romans 5 does not teach that man is born sinful, nor that we have inherited Adam’s sin
If man is born with a sinful nature (original sin) one would assume this would be indicated somewhere in the Bible, and preferably in a clear way since this is a MAJOR teaching about the constitution of man that we would not want to miss. If man is born with a sinful nature, that would make us sin whether we want to or not and we would have great excuses on judgment day when we are being asked why we have sinned. “Because of our sinful nature, of course!” we could reply. If Romans 5 is the best place to look for this doctrine, then it is not a very good one because this teaching is nowhere to be found. The fact is that 1) the Bible nowhere teaches that man has inherited Adam’s sin, and 2) none of the old church fathers taught this doctrine the first 300 years AD. Only the gnostics taught it.
Romans 5:12 tells us the reason why death (not sin) spread – because we sinned
The wages of sin is death – not just in our past but this is still a reality today. Spiritual death spread to all men because each and every man sinned himself. If a man would not have sinned, he would not need to die spiritually but he would still die physically just like innocent babies do and just like Jesus Christ did. Physical death is not the result of our sin because physical death was decreed when Adam sinned, and physical death also applies to innocent people like Jesus who have never sinned.
Rom 5:12 Wherefore, as by one man SIN entered into the world, and death by sin; and so DEATH passed upon all men, FOR that all have sinned
SIN entered the WORLD through Adam because he was the first to sin. No one sinned before him. DEATH (not sin) passed upon all men and why? FOR (because) ALL HAVE SINNED! There you have the reason! If death spread to all men because Adam sinned and because sin is something that can be inherited in the DNA, then Paul had a chance to clarify this but he did not. What Adam did still caused a great stir on all mankind because we all die physically due to him (even little babies) because we cannot reach the tree of life due to him, and the ground is cursed due to him. Romans 5:12 could also have been translated like this:
Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, also in this manner death passed (traversed) into all men, since all have sinned
James says that “sin, when it is finished, brings forth death” (1:15). The specific effect of death James is talking about is a separation from God. We know that the condemnation spoken about in Rom. 5 concerns spiritual death, for those who are justified still die physically. Rom. 5:14 makes the point that even while sin was not imputed because there was no law, death reigned.
What about the “all” have sinned?
Who are included in “all”? Animals? Angels? Jesus? We have to look at the context in order to discern who “all” are. “All” does not always include little babies. “All men” is a translation from the Greek word ἄνθρωπος (anthrópos, Strong’s 444) and could mean 1) men, 2) men and women, or 3) mankind, people, human beings. It may or may not include babies depending on context, just like the usage of the English words. The Bible provides many examples where “all men” could not possibly include babies, and we should therefore not do cherry-picking when it comes to this word but carefully check the context. (There are two words in Greek which mean “man”: anēr, which refers to a specific male individual, and anthrōpos which is the racial/generic term and which has the general idea of mankind.)
Romans 5:18-19 must be read together
If Adam’s sin automatically and universally causes all mankind to receive condemnation for something they did not do or had any choice in, then Christ’s dying on the cross also automatically and universally causes all mankind to be saved – Rom 5:18-19. Clearly this is not the way to understand Rom. 5:18-19. The truth is that all are condemned when they commit sin (V.12) and all are saved when they obey Jesus.
Rom 5:18 Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon ALL men to condemnation; EVEN SO by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon ALL men unto justification of life. 19For as by one man’s disobedience MANY were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall MANY be made righteous.
If ALL are automatically condemned through Adam, then ALL are automatically justified and righteous through Jesus. We all know this could not be the case and it is not proper hermeneutics to read “all” in two different ways in the same sentence – when reading “even so” indicating a valid comparison. Adam’s disobedience does not make everyone born lost anymore than Christ’s death automatically makes everyone being found. If we were all born separated from God because Adam sinned, then we would all be spiritually alive (saved) because Jesus obeyed until death. But we cannot be saved unless we choose to follow Christ. Likewise, we do not die spiritually until we choose to disobey God.
Again, if all die in Adam, then all are saved in Christ. We cannot make one absolute and the other conditional. In other words, IF Romans 5 says SIN (and not death) is passed down from Adam in the unconditional sense, then the same chapter also teaches that the very same entire race of humans are ALL saved unconditionally, because of what Christ did. This would be universalism!
Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; BUT the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Also this sentence must be read in the same way on both sides of the word “but“. If an individual sins, the wages of that sin is (spiritual) death, BUT for the same individual he is promised eternal life though Jesus IF he repents and believes in him. So IF he sins = death, and if he believes = life.
It says “The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life…” To determine which “death” Paul is referring to we can check what he compares it with and see that he opposes it with eternal life. Even if we will get eternal life, we will still die physically. Jesus says in John 11:25 “He who believes in me will live, even though he dies.”
The prodigal son went from life, to death, to life again. He was first alive, dead and alive again.
What is sin? Transgressing the law!
1 John 3:4 Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law
The Bible tells us that sinning is transgressing the law of God. If that is so, it follows that we must first be able to distinguish right from wrong before we can be condemned for our actions. We must first have a brain and other body parts before we can choose to break the law of God. If we are sinners by conception (or by birth), then we would be sinners before we even had a heart, but the Bible says that it is our heart which might condemn us:
Matt. 15:18-19 But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies:
Hosea 4:8 They eat up the sin of my people, and they set their heart on their iniquity.
Ps. 41:6 And if he come to see me, he speaketh vanity: his heart gathereth iniquity to itself; when he goeth abroad, he telleth it.
Ps. 66:18 If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me
Is. 32:6 For the vile person will speak villany, and his heart will work iniquity, to practise hypocrisy, and to utter error against the Lord, to make empty the soul of the hungry, and he will cause the drink of the thirsty to fail.
We do not sin by being born or being conceived. Why would being conceived offend God to such a great extent, and even cause him to separate himself from us? Does he not know that we have no choice in the matter and should not be condemned for something our parents did? And what did our parents really do that caused God’s wrath?
Many verses show that man is not born with original sin
Rom. 2:12For as many as have sinned without law shall also perish without law: and as many as have sinned in the law shall be judged by the law; 13(For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified. 14For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves: 15Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;) 16In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel.
Matthew 5:19 Whoever therefore breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
Ezekiel 18:20The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him.
John 15:22 If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloak for their sin
Isaiah 59:2But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.
Psalm 5:4For thou art not a God that hath pleasure in wickedness: neither shall evil dwell with thee. 5The foolish shall not stand in thy sight: thou hatest all workers of iniquity. 6Thou shalt destroy them that speak leasing: the LORD will abhor the bloody and deceitful man.
Isaiah 7:15 He will be eating curds and honey when he knows enough to reject the
wrong and choose the right,
Romans 9:11 For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil
Romans 7:8But sin, taking occasion by the commandment, wrought in me all manner of concupiscence. For without the law sin was dead. 9For I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died. 10And the commandment, which was ordained to life, I found to be unto death.
Deut 1:39 Moreover your little ones and your children, who you say will be victims,
who today have no knowledge of good and evil, they shall go in there; to
them I will give it, and they shall possess it.
Job 31:15 Did not he that made me in the womb make him? and did not one fashion us in the womb?
Ecclesiastes 7:29 Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright, but they have sought out many inventions.
Deut. 31:29 For I know that after my death ye will utterly corrupt yourselves, and turn aside from the way which I have commanded you.
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You need to read the CONTEXT in order for you to understand…. Romans 5:12 ” Wherefore, as by one man SIN entered into the world, and death by sin; and so DEATH passed upon all men, FOR that all have sinned”.
Look at the last part of the verse “FOR that all have sinned”, it points to a “sin” committed in the past. The question is “who committed that sin in the past ? The verse is cleared, it was ADAM’s sin that “MADE the ALL HAVE SINNED”.
Does the word “death” (v.12) means “separation from God” ? The answer is NO. Why, read your CONTEXT (v.13 , 14) “(For until the law sin was in the world, but sin is not imputed when there is no law. v.14 NEVERTHELESS death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those who had not sinned according to the likeness of the transgression of Adam, who is a type of Him who was to come.”
THE CONTEXT HAS PROVED YOUR WRONG IN YOUR INTERPRETATION OF ROMANS 5. Restudy again my friend and stop misleading people.
Hello and thanks for your message
Adam was the first one to sin, so the very first sin arrived by HIM – and I think we can agree on that. Rom 5:12 explains that Adam’s sin caused death and our sin also caused death. Paul explains what has happened to man ever since Adam, but naturally sin continues to cause death just like it has in the past. The first part of the verse speaks about Adam, but the other half of the verse explains why we die just like him. DEATH (not sin) passed upon all men, and why? BECAUSE all have sinned. The reason stated can be trusted. If we die because we have inherited Adam’s sin, Paul could have said “because we have inherited Adam’s sin”, and if it was SIN that passed upon all men, he could have said this too. Paul doesn’t say that though. Interestingly NONE of the old church fathers the first 200 years AD (with no exception) understood Paul to mean that we die because we have inherited Adam’s sin. I interpret the passage the very same way as the old church fathers.
Of course spiritual death means separation from God. Satan says that sinning will not cause death (as he did to Eve) but Paul says it does.
Rom. 6:23 For the wages of sin is DEATH; but the gift of God is eternal life through
The prodigal son was lost and DEAD while he was away living in sin, but he became alive (again) when he returned to his Father.
But even those who have not sinned (like little babies) will die physically due to Adam with a need to get a restored body by God. Babies never risk their salvation because they have not sinned, but they nevertheless needs God for their restored body and key into heaven. The Bible explains what sin is and what makes us guilty: Transgression of the law! We cannot be guilty for someone else’s sin, and sinning is something we do and nothing that you can inherit.
God bless you!
“If man is born with a sinful nature that makes us sin whether we want to or not, …”
Sin is always willful, and no one (or no knowledgeable person) says otherwise. Not sure where you are trying to go with this. No one is arguing that point. You always sin because you want to. Not even an orthodox Calvinist would say otherwise.
An orthodox calvinist has problems trying to combine opposing ideas, such as the claim that nothing happens against the will of God, at the same time as we sin willingly. So do we sin against God’s will or according to his will? Calvinists would try to keep both positions at the same time, but they are mutually exclusive.
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Furthermore, it is stretching to interpret “all have sinned” as literally meaning all have sinned. Rather, in keeping with the sort of illiterate way that ancient languages worked, it ought to be interpreted as an almost substantive: “all who have sinned have sinned”
Thus, I would interpret it: ”DEATH passed upon all men, BECAUSE OF WHICH all [who have sinned] have sinned.” Everyone who has sinned has done so due to mortality.
I can agree with you that we always have to check the context for “all”. All of what? Are angels included? Animals? Jesus? Babies? In Romans 5 we learn that “all” means “all men” since this is what is spoken about both before and after, and the Greek word for this could mean Men, both Woman and Men, or all human kind. Context tells us which. This indicates that babies are not included and neither do I believe mentally handicapped are included. Babies are not aware of the law so they are unable to sin.
Logically it would be absurd to include babies in such a statement. That doesn’t preclude Paul including them, since he is not always strictly logical. For example, when he argues in Galatians 5 that “if you are circumcised Christ can profit you nothing” only to turn around and say “in Christ neither circumcision nor uncircumcision matters.” That’s a blatant contradiction. If circumcision really make it to where Christ can profit you nothing, then it damns…how then can it be an irrelevant matter? He isn’t fiercely logical, and so an illogical argument certainly can slip by him onto the papyrus or whatever he was writing on. But again, in my estimation, judging from how often substantives are used in the New Testament and in Paul, I think ”all have sinned” constitutes a sort of substantive here that really means “all [who have sinned] have sinned.” Scholars would never be convinced of such an argument with their nitpicky way of looking at grammar and their overly technical rules…but I don’t think a careless writer like Paul really followed the scholarly rules of writing.
<<That doesn’t preclude Paul including them, since he is not always strictly logical.
Paul is 100% logical everywhere.
<< For example, when he argues in Galatians 5 that ”if you are circumcised Christ can profit you nothing” only to turn around and say ”in Christ neither circumcision nor uncircumcision matters.” That’s a blatant contradiction.
That is not a contradiction at all, but since you show that you don't know very much about the Bible, you miss that. If the Galatians would return to Judaism, then Jesus would have died for them in vain. If they returned to the Ceremonial Law, they would have to obey all of it to be saved. Paul says:
1 Corinthians 7:19 Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but the keeping of the commandments of God.
This means that the Ceremonial Law must not be kept but naturally the moral law. The ten commandments were valid also before Moses.
<< He isn’t fiercely logical, and so an illogical argument certainly can slip by him onto the papyrus or whatever he was writing on.
I excuse you for your sloppy theology understanding if you do what you can to study more properly, so you don't show your ignorance.
<<But again, in my estimation, judging from how often substantives are used in the New Testament and in Paul, I think ”all have sinned” constitutes a sort of substantive here that really means ”all [who have sinned] have sinned.”
All who can sin, have sinned. Hence Jesus died for us.
Its been quite some time since I’ve looked at the translational issue in Romans 5:12. But it goes like this:
1.) The word EPI means “because of” or “for.” This word can be contracted to EF’, and it is in Romans 5:12.
2.) The word W means “which.”
3.) In Romans 5:12 we don’t just have EPI or EF’ but EPI W or EF’ W. So it is simply wrong to translate it as “for” or “because of” — it absolutely has to be “because of which.”
So then, instead of “DEATH passed upon all men, FOR all have sinned” or “DEATH passed upon all men, BECAUSE all have sinned” — it must be translated “DEATH passed upon all men, BECAUSE OF WHICH all have sinned.”
The meaning is not that death passes on us because we sin — it is that we sin because we are mortal.
Hey there Rey
Strong’s definition is: on, to, against, on the basis of, at.
1909 epí (a preposition) – properly, on (upon), implying what “fits” given the “apt contact,” building on the verbal idea. 1909 /epí (“upon”) naturally looks to the response (effect) that goes with the envisioned contact, i.e. its apt result (“spin-offs,” effects). The precise nuance of 1909 (epí) is only determined by the context, and by the grammatical case following it – i.e. genitive, dative, or accusative case.
I’m not able to read your understanding of this word into this, and IF you were right, we would have severe Bible contradictions throughout the Bible.
So we sin because we are mortal? This is not taught in the Bible. On the contrary, the Bible says.
Ezekiel 18:20The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the
wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him.
“If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloak for their sin” (John 15:22).
29Lo, this only have I found, that God hath MADE MAN UPRIGHT; but they have sought out many inventions.
If babies are born separated from God, and “in sin” then why does Isaiah 59:1-2 teach that it is “your iniquities” and “your sins” that separates one from God? Why doesn’t it teach “Adam’s sin,” or something resembling “original sin” separates one from God? If God hates sin, why does he create man in such a way that it’s impossible for us to avoid sinning? We would have great excuses on judgment day when God asks us why we have sinned.
“Because you created us with a sinful nature, of course! We had no choice but to sin, and we are victims of your own creation”.
I can recommend the free book on http://www.xcalvinist.com
Strongs is a very crappy resource when it comes to contextual meanings. Epi generally means ‘above’ or ‘on’, if you are talking locational. But if contextually it is being used to describe causality, it means ‘because’. You really should use something other than Strongs. Liddell and Scott, or Thayer’s Lexicon for example.
But as for “and IF you were right, we would have severe Bible contradictions throughout the Bible.” That I’m not concerned with because it is already the case. Romans 2’s “the doers of the Law shall be justified” versus Romans 3’s “by the works of the Law shall not flesh be justified”, for instance. Or the insistence in Romans 4 that Abraham was justified by faith apart from works versus the insistence in James that Abraham was justified by a combination of faith and works. How that in the synoptics the apostles were all called by Jesus himself and all by the sea of Galilee and all after John Baptist was cast into prison, whereas in John’s gospel the disciples are called before John Baptist is cast into prison and by the river Jordan. Peter, who is the first Jesus calls in the other gospels, isn’t even called by Jesus in John, but rather Peter’s brother Andrew is called first and it is he who calls Peter. Although in Matthew, when Peter confesses that Jesus is the Christ, Jesus says “Flesh and blood has NOT revealed this to you, but my Father in Heaven,” in John we find that it was Andrew, Peter’s flesh and blood that revealed it to him, since at the beginning of John, Andrew calls Peter to be a disciple by saying “we have found the Christ.” There are plenty of contradictions, so I don’t find it all that surprising anymore. I hate to burst your bubble though, unless knowing this will help you…which it probably will since you obviously are struggling with how to escape Paulinism and the doctrine of original sin. The New Testament is simply full of contradictions.
Even in the Old Testament there are a few. For example I was reading a commentary on Leviticus by a Jew (Jacob Milgrom’s ‘Leviticus Continental Commentary’) the other day and he says the following on page 1. “In Leviticus, the farmer gives his tithes to God (27:30); in Numbers, to the Levites (18:21); and in Deuteronomy, to himself (14:23). Moreover, Numbers and Deuteronomy limit the tithe to grain (…), must (…), and oil (…), whereas Leviticus imposes the tithe on all produce and animals.” He goes on to explain why this doesn’t pose a problem for Judaism. It does, however, pose a rather obvious problem for fundamentalist Christianity, especially hyper-Pauline Christianity with its doctrine of original sin and super-insistence that everyone who doesn’t believe exactly everything the Bible says will roast in hell forever and ever and ever someday. Coming to recognize the Bible more as a collection of diverse views than a book that fell down from heaven ready made is something that Christians have to struggle with, need to struggle with. Accepting it as an inerrant monolithic unity is nothing more than blissful ignorance…but in my case it was always a nightmare, never blissful. I think it is probably the same for you, since you seem to be struggling so hard with much of Pauline theology. Why do you struggle so much? Why is your reading so adverse to everyone else’s? Because Paul is not a consistent or coherent writer; that is the reason.
Strongs is a very crappy resource—
Strong’s is not bad at all, but I don’t even need Strong’s to see that your particular interpretation of Rom. 5:12 doesn’t hold water in it’s immediate context or compared with other Biblical information.
<<That I'm not concerned with because it is already the case. Romans 2's "the doers of the Law shall be justified" versus Romans 3's "by the works of the Law shall not flesh be justified", for instance.
They are not contradictions at all. Did you check the context and do you understand the context? You can't just rip out a couple of sentences and claim they are contradictory. I have explained this on my website, and you can read on for instance http://www.dividingword.net to read articles about this. We are either justified by the law OR by grace through faith. It's one or the other. We know that if we want to be justified by the Law, then we must obey it to 100% which no one has done, so the only other option is salvation through FAITH. But does this mean that obeying the 10 commandments is now optional? Not at all. Disobeying them will still send you to hell.
<<Or the insistence in Romans 4 that Abraham was justified by faith apart from works versus the insistence in James that Abraham was justified by a combination of faith and works.
Same answer here. It appears you have not studied the Bible as much as you could.
<<How that in the synoptics the apostles were all called by Jesus himself and all by the sea of Galilee and all after John Baptist was cast into prison, whereas in John's gospel the disciples are called before John Baptist is cast into prison and by the river Jordan.
I actually wrote an article about this in Swedish, but I believe there is an article about this also in English on http://www.pinpointevangelism.com. The fishermen immediately obeyed and followed Jesus, but it certainly looks like at least Peter (or all of them) returned back, and one of Peter's comments seems to support this. There are no contradictions at all. Btw, which websites have you checked in order to see the defense side of your perceived contradictions?
<<There are plenty of contradictions, so I don't find it all that surprising anymore.
I have found none, but I'm still interested to see you list those books or websites you have checked for the defense side, and also if you could tell me why you disagree with them.
<< I hate to burst your bubble though, unless knowing this will help you…which it probably will since you obviously are struggling with how to escape Paulinism and the doctrine of original sin.
I have yet to find one Bible contradiction, and I have no struggle with original sin or Paul's letters.
<< For example I was reading a commentary on Leviticus by a Jew (Jacob Milgrom's 'Leviticus Continental Commentary') the other day and he says the following on page 1. "In Leviticus, the farmer gives his tithes to God (27:30); in Numbers, to the Levites (18:21); and in Deuteronomy, to himself (14:23). Moreover, Numbers and Deuteronomy limit the tithe to grain (…), must (…), and oil (…), whereas Leviticus imposes the tithe on all produce and animals."—-
I have no idea what you are talking about here, but when it comes to tithing there are different kinds of them. So, 1) which websites have you studied concerning the Defense and 2) do check the youtube teaching that Kerrigan Skelly on pinpointevangelism has made about tithing, as per one of his Matthew teachings.
<< He goes on to explain why this doesn't pose a problem for Judaism. It does, however, pose a rather obvious problem for fundamentalist Christianity, especially hyper-Pauline Christianity with its doctrine of original sin and super-insistence that everyone who doesn't believe exactly everything the Bible says will roast in hell forev er and ever and ever someday
Actually, the Bible says: James 4:17 "Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin" and Rom. 5:5 "Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;) 16In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel." This means that you're not going to roast in hell if you believe a number is 42 instead of the correct 82, or if Jesus took the right side to Capernaum instead of the correct left side. Tithing is btw not a commandment that we must keep in the NT, but Kerrigan can explain this to you in his teachings.
<<. Coming to recognize the Bible more as a collection of diverse views than a book that fell down from heaven ready made is something that Christians have to struggle with, need to struggle with.
It did not come down ready made but was written under inspiration by the Holy Spirit. That is probably why the Bible lacks contradictions, despite so many detailed claims.
<<Accepting it as an inerrant monolithic unity is nothing more than blissful ignorance…but in my case it was always a nightmare, never blissful
Maybe you can show me one valid contradiction…
<<. I think it is probably the same for you, since you seem to be struggling so hard with much of Pauline theology. Why do you struggle so much?
I don't struggle at all. Why do you get this idea, and why do you come up with false accusations? Since the Bible doesn't seem to be a book that you follow, then this might explain why lies and slander are things you strive to avoid, but STILL…
<<Why is your reading so adverse to everyone else's? Because Paul is not a consistent or coherent writer; that is the reason.
That is a lie, but then again the ten commandments might not mean a whole lot to you. Just remember though that you will one day be judged for breaking them. There will be no excuses. Btw, my views line up very well with all the early church when it comes to my views about original sin, so I'm in good company.
“If babies are born separated from God, and ‘in sin’ then why does Isaiah 59:1-2 teach that it is ‘your iniquities’ and ‘your sins’ that separates one from God?”
Babies are not born separated from God. From the Old Testament’s perspective, we are born pure. Yet because we are mortal, we will sin. Not all sin necessarily separates us from God. Job sinned, and yet he was still righteous. It takes Paul to turn Isaiah’s statement about “your sins” separating you from God into a statement meaning that if you commit one minor sin you are now condemned to eternity in hell. The Old Testament never taught that. I think it could be argued that Jesus didn’t either. There is no need to fight the losing battle of arguing that human beings can live a sinless life — since a sinless life isn’t what God is looking for. That is the error; Paul’s notion that God requires sinless perfection of us is an error. If you start with that as your corner stone, then what you build will be nothing but corrupt. This is why I mentioned those two verses from Sirach. I know its considered Apocrypha by Protestants, and therefore ignored or even censored, but what is said there encapsulates the attitude of the Old Testament, that is, the pre-Pauline attitude. “Everything is not possible to man because he is not immortal. God considered man’s end, that it is grievous, and therefore he has more mercy.” (You have the references in the unpublished comment.) This is what Paul is missing, for to Paul, man’s weakness means God should be meaner to man. The weaker you are, the more God should fly off the handle and burn you for your sin. But to ben Sira, and to the whole of the Old Testament, the weaker we are, all the more reason for God to have mercy. This is the idea in Job, then. Job is righteous, not perfect but righteous. Job is not sinless–he admits to having sinned in his youth. He complains to God “you make me to possess the transgressions of my youth” in his searching for a reason for why he is going through calamity. So, Job was a sinner…but its in the past, and it was probably small. After all he describes himself as feeding the fatherless from his mother’s womb. His life overall was categorized by holiness, but there were those little sins in there. To Paul, as to Job’s three friends, those little sins are so intolerable to God that there is no way Job can ever be considered righteous by God. Since we all do little sins, therefore, (so says Paul and Eliaphaz and the like) righteousness simply doesn’t exist, nobody can be righteous. Yet the Bible says Job was righteous. So to the Old Testament, little sins are not the problem; a life of sin is. To the Old Testament, its about the trajectory of your life. It doesn’t obsess with the little things. The Pauline obsession with sin to the extent that we say “since I told a little white lie once, I can never be righteous in God’s eyes” is what we must get over and move beyond.
<<Babies are not born separated from God. From the Old Testament’s perspective, we are born pure.
Actually I agree there. They are born innocent.
<<Yet because we are mortal, we will sin.
I asked you before to prove this from scripture, and I take it you can't?
<<Not all sin necessarily separates us from God. Job sinned, and yet he was still righteous.
No, Job was not righteous at the same time as he sinned. Where did you get that idea? Don't you believe a person can sin repent and then walk in the light with God and thus be righteous?
<< It takes Paul to turn Isaiah’s statement about ”your sins” separating you from God into a statement meaning that if you commit one minor sin you are now condemned to eternity in hell.
Unrepentant sins will send a person to hell.
<<The Old Testament never taught that.
Of course it did:
Eze:33:11-16 "As surely as I live, says the Sovereign LORD, I take no pleasure in the death of wicked people. I only want them to turn from their wicked ways so they can live. Turn! Turn from your wickedness, O people of Israel! Why should you die? Son of man, give your people this message: The righteous behavior of righteous people will not save them if they turn to sin, nor will the wicked behavior of wicked people destroy them if they repent and turn from their sins. When I tell righteous people that they will live, but then they sin, expecting their past righteousness to save them, then none of their righteous acts will be remembered. I will destroy them for their sins. And suppose I tell some wicked people that they will surely die, but then THEY turn from their sins and do what is just and right. If the wicked restores the pledge, gives back that which he has stolen, walks in the statutes of life, WITHOUT SINNING; he shall surely live, he shall not die. None of their past sins will be brought up again, for they have done what is just and right, and they will surely live."
<<I think it could be argued that Jesus didn’t either.
You seem to live on your own little planet with your own private theology.
<<There is no need to fight the losing battle of arguing that human beings can live a sinless life — since a sinless life isn’t what God is looking for.
Of course this is what God is looking for. Nothing unholy shall enter his kingdom. Ezek 18:24 But if a righteous man turns from his righteousness and commits sin and does the same detestable things the wicked man does, will he live? None of the righteous things he has done will be remembered. Because of the unfaithfulness he is guilty of and because of the sins he has committed, he will die.
<<That is the error; Paul’s notion that God requires sinless perfection of us is an error.
Paul, just like the other Bible writers, all taught the same thing, that iniquities separate us from God.
<<This is why I mentioned those two verses from Sirach.
There might be loads of truths in lost books and apocrypha, but you can't pick and choose from them as you please and they can absolutely NOT contradict the Bible.
<<This is what Paul is missing, for to Paul, man’s weakness means God should be meaner to man.
So, now the world has to sit by your feet since the Church has misunderstood this for 2000 years?
<<But to ben Sira, and to the whole of the Old Testament, the weaker we are, all the more reason for God to have mercy.
So the more we sin the better?
<<Job is righteous, not perfect but righteous.
Job sinned at least once (since all have sinned) but he repented and the rest of his living showed righteousness. God would never label a sinning man righteous. Never.
<<To Paul, as to Job’s three friends, those little sins are so intolerable to God that there is no way Job can ever be considered righteous by God.
That is wrong. Paul said that anyone can be righteous IF IF IF they repent. You overlooked this little piece of information.
<<Since we all do little sins, therefore, (so says Paul and Eliaphaz and the like) righteousness simply doesn’t exist, nobody can be righteous.
OR you have completely misunderstood what you've read. You have added and deleted text, and I hope you haven't done this purposely.
<< Yet the Bible says Job was righteous. So to the Old Testament, little sins are not the problem; a life of sin is.
He was not righteous in his sins, and the OT is very clear about that sins separate us from God who is holy.
<< To the Old Testament, its about the trajectory of your life. It doesn’t obsess with the little things.
Sins are not little things.
<< The Pauline obsession with sin to the extent that we say ”since I told a little white lie once, I can never be righteous in God’s eyes” is what we must get over and move beyond.
That is a completely false assertion and is clear proof that you need to study the Bible more. My advice is that you close the books and the websites which have confused you so much, and study the website http://www.dividingword.net as well as the links. I also have a page in English http://www.dividingword.net/Swedish and select ENGLISH. Good luck
(You're welcome to answer of course, but if you will line up more false assertions and unsupported claims I must cut them short)