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– Did God create me with a sinful nature?

QUESTION: Did God create me with a sinful nature? ANSWER: While this question could be answered with a simple “No,” it would be well to go more thoroughly into this subject than that. The questioner actually asked several questions which we are summing up in this one. To begin, it is well to remind ourselves that the Bible is a book that deals with moral issues rather than with details of science. We live in an age where science and technology have become very important. But while we often ask “how” questions, the Bible tends to concentrate more on questions of “why.” The Bible is absolutely accurate in all that it teaches, but we must remember that when the Bible touches on areas of science, it uses the terminology of the common man rather that that of the PhD scholar. Unlike most textbooks of human learning, the Bible is never out of date and thus does not have to be rewritten every few years.

After detailing the account of creation in Genesis 1, God tells us that He “saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good” (Gen. 1:31). This statement rules out any notion that God created man with a sinful nature. Scripture makes abundantly clear that God is not the author of evil. We know the story in Genesis 3 of how our first parents listened to Satan in the form of a serpent, disobeyed God and thus became sinful. While they did not immediately die physically, before God they became “dead in trespasses and sins” spiritually, yet quite capable of walking in them (Eph. 2:1-3).

As we go on to the account God gives us in Genesis 4, we see that the first sons born to Adam and Eve were sinful human beings. Cain’s sin is boldly and defiantly out in the open. That Abel too was sinful is evidenced by the sacrifice he brought in faith – an innocent animal whose blood must be shed. Cain’s sinfulness is repeated and further developed in his descendants. But going on to chapter 5, we read that “Adam … begot a son in his own likeness, after his image” (v. 3). Again and again in this chapter we hear the sad refrain “and he died.” “The wages of sin is death,” Romans 6:23 unequivocally tells us.

Our sinful natures are thus transmitted to us from our parents, for Psalm 51:5 adds to the above, “In sin my mother conceived me.” Job raises the question, “Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean?” and immediately answers it with the words, “No one!” (Job 14:4). Scripture does not mention genes nor does it tell us in scientific language the mechanism by which our nature is passed on to us. It does indicate clearly our parents’ responsibility for this nature; it never puts the blame for it on God. In another connection the apostle Paul writes to the Galatians, “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked: for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption” (Gal. 6:7-8).

God is indeed “the Father of spirits” (Heb. 12:9). The term “father” in Scripture is often used in the sense of source, author or originator. He is never spoken of as the author of sin or evil. Yet in Isaiah 45:6-7 (JND) He says of Himself: “I am Jehovah, and there is none else; forming the light and creating darkness, making peace and creating evil: I, Jehovah, do all these things.” The New King James Version renders the term “evil” as “calamity,” and Scofield’s note on that expression tells us this: “One of the meanings of the Hebrew word ra (often translated ‘evil’) carries the idea of adversity or calamity, and it is evidently so employed here. God has made sorrow and wretchedness to be the sure fruits of sin.” Thus while God has ordained that every cause will have its effect, and that the effect of sin may be calamity or even destruction, we cannot rightly blame God for the problems we bring on ourselves, nor can we necessarily explain how God will have their effects produced. Thank God for that which He so freely offers: “The gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom. 6:23).

Answered by Eugene P. Vedder, Jr.

With permission to publish by: Sam Hadley, Grace & Truth, 210 Chestnut St., Danville, IL., USA. Website: www.gtpress.org

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1 Comment on – Did God create me with a sinful nature?

  1. internet elias // July 10, 2011 at 12:29 pm //

    Seems that Eden and its inhabitants are crucially important …not only historically but to contemporary man’s whole existence. Everything we are began there. So what are we? What is God’s plan for us? What is the message from Eden? Even as a small child I knew something didn’t add up…didn’t make sense about Adam, Eve, Tree of Knowledge, and the most subtle deceiver. I never believed that God planted a perfect garden east of Eden to house His perfect man…only to have Lucifer sneak in and tear up the play house. Because if that is true, then Lucifer has power over God. And I know that is not the case. So I prayed to know the real story. And over time God opened the scriptures to me and what I saw is amazing. Truth is…the most subtle deceiver was there only by permission. Eve knew only Good and was never tempted to partake of the Tree of Knowledge. She had no fallen nature by which to be ‘drawn by her own lust and enticed.’ She did not lie to God but told the truth…’the serpent beguiled me.’ Adam knew he must become sin for the bride so he ate also…since he was a type of Christ and Eve was a type of the Bride of Christ…the Church. Only afterwards was God’s ultimate plan fulfilled, ‘let us make man in our image.’ Only afterwards did he say, ‘Behold, the man is become as we to know both good and evil.’ My heart is delighted to finally know and understand that Satan did not get one up on God that day. God purposed man to experience death/evil/falleness the same as he had experienced life/goodness/wholeness in Eden with God. Only through internalizing (knowing) both could Free Will be born. And only through Free Will could man be empowered to choose ‘whom ye will serve.’ How like Satan to twist and turn the event in Eden to make him look like the winner. He perpetuates the doctrine that Adam and Eve thought so little of the love of the Father that they gave up everything to one encounter with Satan. And God looks helpless and powerless. Something is very wrong with that picture. I know my view totally contradicts traditional thought and will never matter to anyone but me. But a whole lot of scripture makes better sense when looked at from the standpoint that God alone ruled that day in Eden…..that He purposed Eve who knew no sin…who didn’t even know it was possible…to be beguiled by the most subtle deceiver. God was in control, fully, of everything having to do with Eden. I’m sure I’ve blown your mind completely with my lengthy rant…lol. I discuss my heartfelt belief about Eden in a page called Adam and Eve: Innocent. God’s just too smart to be duped by Lucifer on the most important day of our lives….Adam and Eve at the Tree of Knowledge and the resulting Fall.

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