What We Believe: Article 3 Original Sin
3- We believe in the doctrine of original sin; we believe in man's impotency to recover himself from the fallen state he is in by nature by his own free will and ability.
In today's post, we will begin to dig into the question all Christianity seeks to answer: How are we saved? It is a question that evryone ponders, and is at the core of everything we believe and teach in the church. Our Articles of Faith approaches this teaching in a systematic way. We want God's people to know and understand more than just, "here's the answer" and move on. A full faith in, and understanding of, our salvation must be deeper than the short and sweet to stand up to the trials and doubts in this world. I consider it much like mechanicing. In my secular life I am a heavy truck technician. In my field, there are two types of people I work with. There are the parts changers, and the technicians. The parts changers simply see a truck come in with turbo codes, and quickly push to changing the turbo. The technician sees there is a truck with turbo codes and looks at the history of the truck, the symptoms the truck has, and gets a full picture of the problem. Looking at all of this, they find a history of turbo and fuel issues. In checking the fuel system, they find low fuel pressures, causing low exhaust temps, and there by, poor turbo performance. They repair the fuel issue and fix the truck. Our understanding of salvation can be taught the same way, and often is. We are simply taught we are sinners, Jesus is the answer, and what more do you need to know? There is so much more to this teaching than that. What is sin? How are we sinners? What does it mean to be a sinner? How can we change? If Jesus is the answer, why? What was it about Him that changed anything? Why did He have to die? Let us start at the beginning.
The first thing we need to know and believe is, where does this all start. That begins in Genesis. Though we do not have an Article addressing this truth let me share one belief that we Primitive Baptist hold to strongly. We believe that the Genesis account of creation is literal. That meaning, God, all by His triune self, created everything from absolutely nothing in six literal days. We believe that God created everything good and perfect. We know that because in Genesis 1:31 God records that He looked at everything He created and declared it to be "very good". This decleration was speaking of heaven, the universe, the earth, every creature, every vegetation, commandments, work, and even man. Good in this context, and most all scriptural points, means as it should be. God declared all of these things to be exactly as He desired them to be. Man was perfect and good at this point. We believe that in this state, Adam would have lived forever. We believe this because in the book of Romans chapter 5 we find: "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: 13 (For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law.14 Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam's transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come". This tells us that without sin there is no death. This leads us to our next needed understanding.
What is sin, and how did it get here? When we look at Genesis 1 and 2, we get the full picture of God creating humanity. Humanity began with one man, and his name was Adam. When God created Adam, He planted a garden in Eden and placed Adam there. In this garden, God gave the man everything he could ever need or desire. The one thing lacking was a help meet for him. God remedied this by taking one of Adam's ribs and creating Eve, Adam's now wife. God gave Adam a commandment in Genesis 2:16. He commanded Adam to freely eat of all things in the garden except the tree of "Kowledge of Good and Evil". This commandment came with a declared punishment if Adam broke this commandment. That punishment, or cost, was death. We will look more at that in a bit. When God did this, giving the commandment, He explained what sin is. Sin, in its simplest understanding, is the wilfull breaking of God's command and will. Up to this point noone, or anything, had done this in the earth. We know this because God declared at the end of this day that all was "very good". Sadly, though, we know that this did not last. We find in the next Chapter that Adam was tempted and failed to stand up to that temptation and willfully ate of the forbidden fruit. Scripture declares that in when Adam ate both of thier eyes were opened. This is what is known as "Original Sin". The moment that sin entered into the world. Sin is the problem in this world. Sin is the cause of our seperation from God. Sin is real and MUST be understood.
What we need to understand next, and the last point we will look at today, is what was the result of Adam's sin. In looking at the Genesis passage of Scripture we will find a multitude of results of Adam's sin. We will split these results into two fields of understanding. Those being first, the eternal, or spiritual, cost, and the timely, or worldly, cost. God promised that "in the day thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die". Now, anyone that has read the bible much knows Adam lived to 930 years old. So, how do we hold to the literal teaching of "in the day"? We believe that the moment Adam ate of that fruit he died a spiritual death. This death was a complete and utter seperation from God. We believe he fell into a state we call "Total Depravity". A state Scripture calls "Dead in tresspasses and in sins", see Ephesians 2:1. As of that moment, Adam lost any, and all, hopes of living eternally with God. Sin is the thing that seperates us from God. We find in Scripture that man in this condition can not hear God's word (John 8:43-44). We believe they can not understand the gospel (1 Corinthians 1:18). We believe they can not do these things because they have no spiritual life in them. Just as I need life in me to feel, hear, taste, see, or experience anything in this world, I need spiritual life to do the same with things of God. Adam was dead in tresspasses and sin at this point and, by Scripture, deserves only one thing and that is death and eternal seperation from God. That is the spiritual cost of sin. The wages of sin is death. The timely, or worldly, results of sin in Adam's life is a longer list. If you look in Genesis 3 we find that Adam's sin caused his food to come from hard labor. It caused his marriage to be problomatic. It caused the ground and the earth to give him thorns with his efforts. It even, with time, caused his literal death. We see this in our lives as well. Sin seperates us from God eternally. It also, as we allow it in our lives, causes marital problems, work problem, finacial problems, health problems, and even death.
So, knowing sin is now in the world and a part of Adam's life, what now? How can this be changed? How does sin become a part of our life? We will look at that in the next post. God bless you all is my prayer.