ChristianAnswers.Net WebBible Encyclopedia
also known as: wickedness, transgression, wrongdoing, “is guilty,” evil
Sin apparently began with a prominent and proud angel in Heaven, known now as Satan, and it spread to many other angelic beings. It is deduced that this happened soon after the Creation of Earth and Adam, and before the conception of Cain and his younger brother Abel. As a result, Satan and his rebels were cast out of Heaven to Earth. The Son of God watched him “fall like lightning from Heaven” (Luke 10:18). These supernatural beings are treacherous, hate-filled opponents of all goodness and righteousness—relentless adversaries of God and man. Satan’s temptation and deception of Eve, led to the sin of Adam. This Great Fall from innocence to evil set consequences in motion that man and all creation groan under, to this day. Adam immediately died spiritually, and his body began to inevitably die. Because God is omniscient and omnipotent, He could have blocked these events from ever taking place. His permitting them, however, in no way makes God the author of sin. It is unknown to us why God allowed these events, however, believers trust by faith in His supreme wisdom and love that this course was necessary and serves an eternally good purpose that brings great glory to God. He tells us that, at the proper time, all evil will ultimately be defeated, and the curse of physical death that it brought upon all living creatures will forever be lifted.
By this sin, Adam became an apostate from God, a rebel in arms against his Creator. He lost the favor of God and intimate communion with Him; his whole nature became depraved, and he incurred the penalty involved in the covenant of works.
Adam was constituted by God the federal head and representative of all his posterity, as he was also their natural head, and therefore when he fell they fell with him (Romans 5:12-21; 1 Corinthians 15:22-45). His probation was their probation, and his fall their fall. Because of Adam's first sin, all his posterity came into the world in a state of sin and condemnation, i.e., (1) a state of moral corruption, and (2) of guilt, as having judicially imputed to them the guilt of Adam's first sin.
“Original sin” is frequently and properly used to denote only the moral corruption of their whole nature inherited by all men from Adam. This inherited moral corruption consists in, (1) the loss of original righteousness; and (2) the presence of a constant proneness to evil, which is the root and origin of all actual sin. It is called “sin” (Romans 6:12, 14, 17; 7:5-17), the “flesh” (Galatians 5:17, 24), “lust” (James 1:14-15), the “body of sin” (Romans 6:6), “ignorance,” “blindness of heart,” “alienation from the life of God” (Ephesians 4:18-19).
It influences and depraves the whole man, and its tendency is still downward to deeper and deeper corruption, there remaining no recuperative element in the soul. It is a total depravity, and it is also universally inherited by all the natural descendants of Adam (Romans 3:10-23; 5:12-21; 8:7).
Pelagians deny original sin, and regard man as by nature morally and spiritually well; semi-Pelagians regard him as morally sick; Augustinians, or, as they are also called, Calvinists, regard man as described above, spiritually dead (Ephesians 2:1; 1 John 3:14).
The doctrine of original sin is proved…
Sin is “any want of conformity unto or transgression of the law of God” (1 John 3:4; Romans 4:15), in the inward state and habit of the soul, as well as in the outward conduct of the life, whether by commission or omission (Romans 6:12-17; 7:5-24). The moral character of a man’s actions is determined by the moral state of his heart. The disposition to sin, or the habit of the soul that leads to the sinful act, is itself also sin (Romans 6:12-17; Galatians 5:17; James 1:14-15).
Types of sin
Various kinds of sin are mentioned in the Bible.
How to identify sin
Partial list of sins
Penalties for sin
God’s remedy for sin