Original Sin

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by KenH, Nov 12, 2002.

  1. KenH

    KenH
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    What are your thoughts on this article - strengths, weaknesses?

    Ken

    The Doctrine of Original Sin
    by Steve Cowan, Pastor
    Immanuel Baptist Church
    Fayetteville, Arkansas

    When one looks out into the world, one of the most startling observations is that of the universality of sin. There is not one culture, not even one person, that has gone without committing wrongful acts toward God and man. In history, of course, one is prone to notice the evil done by important figures such as Nero and Hitler. Yet these are merely extreme examples of what is obviously a common tendency among all people. Even the most virtuous persons have not acted virtuously in every instance. At some time, everyone has acted selfishly, maliciously, or impiously.

    The Scriptures, too, attest to the universality of sin. The Apostle Paul writes that "there is no one righteous, not even one" (Rom. 3:10) and "all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God" (Rom. 3:23). I Kings 8:46 says that "there is no one who does not sin." There can be no doubt that experience and Scripture both teach that sin is a universal occurrence among human beings.

    Why is it that sin is so prevalent? Why cannot we find even one exception, one person (besides Christ) who has not sinned? The answer to this question is found in the Church's doctrine of Original Sin. This brief essay will discuss the meaning of original sin as well as outline the various ways in which this doctrine has been understood in church history. One of these ways will be shown to be the best view in light of the biblical data.
    The Meaning of "Original Sin"

    Original Sin does not refer to the first (i.e., Adam's) sin. Rather, it refers to the result of that first sin. Adam was created righteous and in God's holy image (Gen. 1 and 2). He had, as Augustine explained long ago, a perfectly free will; he was able to choose either good or evil. Yet, Adam used his free choice to choose sin (Gen. 3:16). There is no explanation as to why he so chose. All one can know is that his choice was freely made. Neither God nor Satan forced him to sin.

    As a result of Adam's sin, the whole human race has been plunged into darkness. Man's whole nature has been corrupted so that all men are predisposed toward, and guilty of, sin. This is what is meant by original sin. As Anthony Hoekema explains, original sin includes both guilt and pollution. The guilt aspect has to do with the fact that all of mankind somehow participates in the sin of Adam. How this happens will be discussed later, but suffice it to say now that all men stand condemned before God because of the guilt they share with Adam. Scripture makes this abundantly clear in Romans 5:14-19. Paul writes that "death reigned from the time of Adam...even over those who did not sin by breaking a command" (v. 14); "the judgment followed one sin and brought condemnation (on all)" (v. 16); "the result of one trespass was condemnation for all men" (v. 18); and "through the disobedience of the one man, many were made sinners" (v. 19). Also in I Corinthians 15:22 Paul writes, "in Adam all die." All of this shows that the spiritual and physical death suffered as a consequence of sin has been applied to all men because of Adam's one sin. This does not mean that Adam's descendants are being unduly held accountable for his sin. What is being said is that in some way (which, again, will be discussed later) all men participated in Adam's sin so that all are actually guilty.

    The pollution aspect of original sin concerns man's sinful nature. This is the aspect that accounts for the universality of sin. Because of the Fall, man is no longer both able to sin and able to not sin. He is only able to sin. The entire inclination of his being is toward sin and rebellion. Man, as Calvin claimed, is "totally depraved." Jeremiah asserts that "the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately corrupt" (Jer. 17:9; see also Mk. 7:21-23). Paul declares: "All have turned away, they have together become worthless; there is none good, not even one" (Rom. 3:12, Ps. 14:2-3). Unregenerate men are slaves to sin (Rom. 6:17, 20; John 8:34). By his very nature, man is an object of divine wrath (Eph. 2:3).

    Furthermore, man's mind has been corrupted (Eph. 4:18), and he cannot understand the things of God (I Cor. 2:14). This inherent corruption in man exists from the very first moment of his existence. David claimed he was "sinful from the time my mother conceived me" (Ps. 51:5), and Genesis 8:21 affirms that "man's heart is evil from his youth."

    Of course, when it is said that man is totally depraved, this should not be taken to mean that people never do anything positive or good, or that one is always as bad as he could possibly be. All people occasionally do things that benefit others. What total depravity means is that even man's righteous deeds "are as filthy rags" (Is. 64:6). Nothing is done without some taint of sin; of what Jonathan Edwards called "enlightened self-interest." A person may do some outwardly good deed, but deep in his heart there is some motivating factor that serves the self. He does the good deed because it is expedient for himself at the time. Thus, for a deed to be truly good, in an ultimate sense, one's motives must also be good. Motivation is the crucial point at which everyone fails.

    This problem of apparent "good" deeds can also be explained by the fact that man tends to describe goodness in relative rather than absolute terms. A man is said to be good relative to other men. For example, compared to Adolf Hitler, it would be fair to say that Winston Churchill was a good man. However, the Bible speaks of goodness relative to God. Compared to Him, no man, no matter how praise-worthy his actions, can be called good (c.f. Lk. 18:19).

    So, the Biblical view of Fallen Man is that he exists in a state of moral corruption. His whole being is inclined toward sin so that he is unable, in his own power, to please or know God. He cannot even choose God of his own volition (John 6:44,65).

    The Pelagian Heresy

    The Doctrine of Original Sin, as outlined above, has not gone unchallenged, however. Perhaps the strongest opposing view (and one which often recurs today) was put forth by a British monk named Pelagius in the early fifth century. His view could be called the "imitation" or "sociological" theory of original sin. In actuality, this is not a theory of original sin at all, but simply an attempt to explain the universality of sin without involving Adam's descendants in their father's evil act. Pelagius held that Adam's fall did not pollute his descendants, nor were they guilty of his sin. Each person is born innocent just as Adam was, and is free to sin or not sin as he wills. The fact that all people do in fact sin is due to the bad example that Adam set for mankind. Every person inevitably imitates Adam's transgressions because he is born into an environment permeated by the sin of his predecessors. Pelagius was drawn to this view because he felt that original sin lead logically to the idea that mankind is unjustly punished for the sin of another. Therefore, he taught that each person started life in innocence and then sinned on his own before being condemned by God.

    Nevertheless, the imitation theory must be rejected. There are several reasons for this:

    1) It is contrary to Scripture. Nothing could be plainer in the Scriptures than the corporate solidarity of all mankind in the sin of Adam. The crux of the argument between Pelagius and Augustine on this matter revolved around the interpretation of the last phrase in Romans 5:12: "Because all sinned." Pelagius said that this phrase indicated that death came to all men because all men sinned on their own. Augustine believed it meant that all died because all sinned in Adam. Though there is nothing in the grammar of this phrase to preclude the Pelagian interpretation, the context clearly demands the Augustinian position. In verses 13 and 14 Paul states that death reigned over those "who had not sinned." On five occasions in verses 15 through 19, Paul asserts that condemnation comes to all men because of the one sin of the one man, Adam. Furthermore, throughout this passage, Paul is drawing an analogy between the righteousness imputed to believers because of the obedience of Christ and the death imputed to mankind because of Adam's disobedience. What is the point of this analogy if we do not really sin in Adam, but we are made righteous in Christ, the Second Adam?

    2) It cannot account for the death of infants. If everyone is born innocent, and death is a punishment for sin, then there is no reason for infants (who have not sinned) to die. Yet, it is a fact that infants do die. This does not necessarily imply that deceased infants must go to Hell on the traditional view of original sin. It is possible that there is a special provision of God's grace for people who have not actually sinned. Nevertheless, the death of infants can only be explained if we assume they are not innocent of sin.

    3) It begs the question. As R.C. Sproul points out, if everyone is born innocent, one ought to expect exceptions to the "universality" of sin. Why is it that no one ever chooses obedience if all are born with a neutral disposition? The appeal to societal influences (or imitation) is inadequate. How can society corrupt every individual until it becomes corrupt itself? And how can it become corrupt if there are some uncorrupt people who would choose not to corrupt it?

    How, then, is Adam's sin imputed to all men? How is it that everyone is said to have participated in it? The two most prominent theories in this regard are the realist theory and the federal theory (sometimes called the "representative" or "direct imputation" theory).

    The Realist Theory

    Realism was held by Augustine and, perhaps, Calvin. It seeks to avoid, like Pelagius, the idea that someone can be held accountable for another's sin. Briefly stated, it claims that the guilt of Adam's sin is rightly charged to all men because all were actually present in Adam when he did it. Everyone, genetically speaking, was there in the loins of Adam. Therefore, since Adam physically encompassed all of his posterity, they are all guilty of his sin. Biblical support for this view is found in Hebrews 7:9-10, where Levi is said to have paid tithes to Melchizedek because he was "in the body of his ancestor."

    There are several problems with realism, however:

    1) Hebrews 7:9-10 does not explicitly support this view. The author of the epistle qualifies his statement regarding Levi with the words "so to speak" (NASB), implying that his language is figurative rather than literal.

    2) Realism does not really solve the problem of the relation between Adam's sin and his posterity. Even proponents of the view do not believe that everyone was present in Adam's body as individuals, nor do they participate in his sin personally. So, how can the whole human race really be guilty?

    3) The analogy between Christ and Adam vitiates the realist theory. If there is no "realistic" or "genetic" connection between Christ and mankind, why must there be one between Adam and mankind? Everyone is not descended from Christ physically, yet his righteousness can be imputed to believers. Therefore, there need not be a realistic theory to account for the imputation of sin.

    The Federal View

    The federal theory is the only view that does true justice to the Biblical material. This view holds that when Adam sinned, he was acting as the legal representative of all mankind. He stands at the head of the human race as the prototype man. It is not without significance, therefore, that the name "Adam" is not only the first man's proper name, but can also denote "mankind" generally. Adam represents all men in the same way that an elected official is said to represent his constituents. He acts of their behalf, so that his "vote" in favor of sin was everyone's vote. Therefore, God imputes the consequences of Adam's sin--guilt and pollution--to all of his posterity. On this view, all of the Biblical statements about all sinning in Adam can be taken seriously, and without resorting to a realistic interpretation. We truly participated in Adam's sin, but in a representative rather that actual sense. The guilt mankind incurs is applied forensically and judicially.

    The chief objection against this theory is that it is not fair. God would be unjust to let one man represent mankind on so serious an issue. Each person ought to stand on his own. This objection can be answered in two ways.

    1) It assumes that God cannot choose a perfect representative. When voters choose someone to represent them the delegate may not accurately portray their views. When God chooses, however, one can be assured that He will choose someone who will perfectly represent his constituents. Adam acted as any man would have acted. To believe otherwise only reflects the extreme arrogance of fallen men.

    2) It abrogates the analogy between Christ and Adam. Paul claims that "as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive" (I Cor. 15:22). If it is wrong for Adam to represent mankind in the Garden, it is wrong for Christ to represent them on the cross. If each man must stand on his own in regard to the Fall, then each man must stand on his own in regard to salvation. That means that each man must work for his redemption--a clear repudiation of the Biblical teaching on salvation by grace alone.

    Conclusion

    The Doctrine of Original Sin is an important aspect of Christian theology. It helps the believer understand the cause for the universality of sin and the way in which everyone inherits the guilt and sinful nature of Adam. It also shows man's need for redemption in Christ. Paul could not have said it better when he wrote: "For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous" (Rom 5:19).

    For Further Reading:

    Edwards, Jonathan. On the Freedom of the Will
    Hoekema, Anthony. Created in God's Image
    Sproul, R.C. Chosen by God


    [ November 12, 2002, 07:41 PM: Message edited by: Ken Hamilton ]
     
  2. Rev. G

    Rev. G
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    Nice, succinct article on the topic.

    I'd like to hear some thoughts on this section in particular - especially from those who maintain that infants are born without sin (infants are sinless).

    Rev. G
     
  3. Eric B

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    This further shows that Augustine was influenced by Origen, who held that all souls actually did consciously preexist with Christ, and that Christ was simply the only one who remained with the Father, while all others followed Adam. Realism would make perfect sense under that scenario, as man would be on the same level of angels (who are not given any chance of repentance, so God was truly being "gracious" in giving at least some men a[n other] chance, even though they all already had a "chance"). But Origen's position completely jeopardizes the unique deity of Christ, unless you see that as an earlier "incarnation".
    This seems to make some sense, but it does seem to raise the question, Is Adam our representative because we are just like him (as that last statement implies), or are we like him only because God made him our representative (as the explanation given of political representatives implies)? The former raises the question of why we would have all acted the same way, and the latter still fails to escape the problem raised by the realists and Pelagians of holding someone accountable for another's sin (which is only answered with the premise of the former).
    Of course, the problem people have with that is that Christ does not represent the same "all" that Adam does because not all are saved. That has some who were dragged into this damned state by being represented by Adam, being (according to some) deliberately left without the saving representation of Christ, yet still judged as if they made some conscious personal decision to be that way. For them, federal headship simply becomes another synonym for a decree of reprobation.
    BTW, if Augustine and even Calvin were realists, then who popularized federalism?

    [ November 12, 2002, 03:28 PM: Message edited by: Eric B ]
     
  4. Rev. G

    Rev. G
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    [​IMG]

    Actually, it was the Pelagians who were influenced by Origen. Probe a bit deeper into the Pelagian Controversy - particularly St. Jerome's role.

    Rev. G
     
  5. Eric B

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    [ November 12, 2002, 05:21 PM: Message edited by: Eric B ]
     
  6. Eric B

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    [ November 12, 2002, 05:21 PM: Message edited by: Eric B ]
     
  7. Eric B

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    Yeah, probably them too. Mch of the Church actually was influenced by him in different ways, and this was one place where Augustine drew from him.

    [ November 12, 2002, 05:20 PM: Message edited by: Eric B ]
     
  8. shilo

    shilo
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    Noone believes that Babies are born Sinless. :rolleyes:

    Although, "dead in tresspasses and sin" God does not hold infants accountale for their sin. as seen illustrated in the Old testament..

    Moreover your little ones, which ye said should be a prey, and your children, which in that day HAD NO KNOWLEDGE BETWEEN GOOD AND EVIL, they shall go in thither and unto them will I give it, and they shall possess it ( Deu. 1:39)

    And should i spare Nineveh, that great city, wherein are more than sixscore thousand persons that CANNOT DISCERN BETWEEN THEIR RIGHT HAND AND THEIR LEFT; and also much cattle? (jon. 4:11)

    and in the NT.

    Romans 5:13
    (for until the Law sin was in the world: BUT SIN is NOT IMPUTED WHERE THERE IS NO LAW

    Babies Can't discern between their rigth and left hand..neither can they Know right and wrong. Babies never die and go to hell.
    that's what the Bible says..

    [ November 12, 2002, 05:37 PM: Message edited by: shilo ]
     
  9. Rev. G

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    Shilo, you do not, but there are some who do take this position.

    God showed mercy here, without question. But what about all those places / people (including women, children and animals) that God commanded Joshua and the Children of Israel to destroy? He ordered the decimation of those who could not discern these things.

    In your opinion does this mean that one has never heard the Law or the Gospel is innocent (i.e., the "innocent native in Africa")?

    Rev. G
     
  10. Scott_Bushey

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    *IGNORANANCE* DOES NOT MAKE ONE ABOVE THE LAW!

    the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
    Lev 4:2 Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, If a soul shall sin through ignorance against any of the commandments of the LORD concerning things which ought not to be done, and shall do against any of them:
    Lev 4:3 If the priest that is anointed do sin according to the sin of the people; then let him bring for his sin, which he hath sinned, a young bullock without blemish unto the LORD for a sin offering.
    Lev 4:4 And he shall bring the bullock unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation before the LORD; and shall lay his hand upon the bullock's head, and kill the bullock before the LORD.
    Lev 4:5 And the priest that is anointed shall take of the bullock's blood, and bring it to the tabernacle of the congregation:
    Lev 4:6 And the priest shall dip his finger in the blood, and sprinkle of the blood seven times before the LORD, before the veil of the sanctuary.
    Lev 4:7 And the priest shall put some of the blood upon the horns of the altar of sweet incense before the LORD, which is in the tabernacle of the congregation; and shall pour all the blood of the bullock at the bottom of the altar of the burnt offering, which is at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
    Lev 4:8 And he shall take off from it all the fat of the bullock for the sin offering; the fat that covereth the inwards, and all the fat that is upon the inwards,
    Lev 4:9 And the two kidneys, and the fat that is upon them, which is by the flanks, and the caul above the liver, with the kidneys, it shall he take away,
    Lev 4:10 As it was taken off from the bullock of the sacrifice of peace offerings: and the priest shall burn them upon the altar of the burnt offering.
    Lev 4:11 And the skin of the bullock, and all his flesh, with his head, and with his legs, and his inwards, and his dung,
    Lev 4:12 Even the whole bullock shall he carry forth without the camp unto a clean place, where the ashes are poured out, and burn him on the wood with fire: where the ashes are poured out shall he be burnt.
    Lev 4:13 And if the whole congregation of Israel sin through ignorance, and the thing be hid from the eyes of the assembly, and they have done somewhat against any of the commandments of the LORD concerning things which should not be done, and are guilty;
    Lev 4:14 When the sin, which they have sinned against it, is known, then the congregation shall offer a young bullock for the sin, and bring him before the tabernacle of the congregation.
    Lev 4:15 And the elders of the congregation shall lay their hands upon the head of the bullock before the LORD: and the bullock shall be killed before the LORD.
    Lev 4:16 And the priest that is anointed shall bring of the bullock's blood to the tabernacle of the congregation:
    Lev 4:17 And the priest shall dip his finger in some of the blood, and sprinkle it seven times before the LORD, even before the veil.
    Lev 4:18 And he shall put some of the blood upon the horns of the altar which is before the LORD, that is in the tabernacle of the congregation, and shall pour out all the blood at the bottom of the altar of the burnt offering, which is at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
    Lev 4:19 And he shall take all his fat from him, and burn it upon the altar.
    Lev 4:20 And he shall do with the bullock as he did with the bullock for a sin offering, so shall he do with this: and the priest shall make an atonement for them, and it shall be forgiven them.
    Lev 4:21 And he shall carry forth the bullock without the camp, and burn him as he burned the first bullock: it is a sin offering for the congregation.
    Lev 4:22 When a ruler hath sinned, and done somewhat through ignorance against any of the commandments of the LORD his God concerning things which should not be done, and is guilty;
    Lev 4:23 Or if his sin, wherein he hath sinned, come to his knowledge; he shall bring his offering, a kid of the goats, a male without blemish:
    Lev 4:24 And he shall lay his hand upon the head of the goat, and kill it in the place where they kill the burnt offering before the LORD: it is a sin offering.
    Lev 4:25 And the priest shall take of the blood of the sin offering with his finger, and put it upon the horns of the altar of burnt offering, and shall pour out his blood at the bottom of the altar of burnt offering.
    Lev 4:26 And he shall burn all his fat upon the altar, as the fat of the sacrifice of peace offerings: and the priest shall make an atonement for him as concerning his sin, and it shall be forgiven him.
    Lev 4:27 And if any one of the common people sin through ignorance, while he doeth somewhat against any of the commandments of the LORD concerning things which ought not to be done, and be guilty;
    Lev 4:28 Or if his sin, which he hath sinned, come to his knowledge: then he shall bring his offering, a kid of the goats, a female without blemish, for his sin which he hath sinned.
    Lev 4:29 And he shall lay his hand upon the head of the sin offering, and slay the sin offering in the place of the burnt offering.
    Lev 4:30 And the priest shall take of the blood thereof with his finger, and put it upon the horns of the altar of burnt offering, and shall pour out all the blood thereof at the bottom of the altar.
    Lev 4:31 And he shall take away all the fat thereof, as the fat is taken away from off the sacrifice of peace offerings; and the priest shall burn it upon the altar for a sweet savour unto the LORD; and the priest shall make an atonement for him, and it shall be forgiven him.
    Lev 4:32 And if he bring a lamb for a sin offering, he shall bring it a female without blemish.
    Lev 4:33 And he shall lay his hand upon the head of the sin offering, and slay it for a sin offering in the place where they kill the burnt offering.
    Lev 4:34 And the priest shall take of the blood of the sin offering with his finger, and put it upon the horns of the altar of burnt offering, and shall pour out all the blood thereof at the bottom of the altar:
    Lev 4:35 And he shall take away all the fat thereof, as the fat of the lamb is taken away from the sacrifice of the peace offerings; and the priest shall burn them upon the altar, according to the offerings made by fire unto the LORD: and the priest shall make an atonement for his sin that he hath committed, and it shall be forgiven him.
     
  11. shilo

    shilo
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    God does not hold infants accountable for their sin. It's written as clear as could be.

    Moreover your little ones, which ye said should be a prey, and your children, which in that day HAD NO KNOWLEDGE BETWEEN GOOD AND EVIL, they shall go in thither and unto them will I give it, and they shall possess it ( Deu. 1:39)

    And should i spare Nineveh, that great city, wherein are more than sixscore thousand persons that CANNOT DISCERN BETWEEN THEIR RIGHT HAND AND THEIR LEFT; and also much cattle? (jon. 4:11)

    and in the NT.

    Romans 5:13
    (for until the Law sin was in the world: BUT SIN is NOT IMPUTED WHERE THERE IS NO LAW

    Babies Can't discern between their right and left hand..neither can they Know right and wrong. Babies never die and go to hell.
    that's what the Bible says..

    [ November 12, 2002, 07:51 PM: Message edited by: shilo ]
     
  12. KenH

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    Amen, Shilo. [​IMG]

    Ken
     
  13. Scott_Bushey

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    Shilo writes:
    Moreover your little ones, which ye said should be a prey, and your children, which in that day HAD NO KNOWLEDGE BETWEEN GOOD AND EVIL, they shall go in thither and unto them will I give it, and they shall possess it ( Deu. 1:39)

    Scott asks:
    How have you concluded that this passage implies that the children spoken of are entering into eternity? Actually, the premise is that the children of Israel would not be held responsible to the sins that their fathers committed. The idea is that "eventually",the children would enter in to the promised land. It does not necessarily imply that they would go in to possess this land at that momment....does it?

    Also, please comment on the passage from Leviticus. How do you resolve the conflict?
     
  14. Scott_Bushey

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    Also,
    Please comment on the "Flood" and what was the status of all the perishing individuals. noah and his family found refuge, in a very salvific fashion or antitype, but what of the rest of the world? What of those who were children?

    Shilo writes:
    Babies never die and go to hell.
    that's what the Bible says..

    Scott asks: Can you please provide me w/ this information as I have never seen that which you confidently propose. In fact, it smacks of universalism and pelagianism.

    [ November 12, 2002, 08:23 PM: Message edited by: Scott_Bushey ]
     
  15. KenH

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  16. Scott_Bushey

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    Ken,
    Just for the record, I don't dislike Spurgeons position. I would think most men would love to side w/ the idea. The idea from our minds eye is compassion towards the child. However, I disagree w/ Spurgeon. His premise is (IMO) ill aligned. For instance, his position is that God is love, full of compassion. I agree! I ask, how is Gods compassion and love toward mankind in general? Every day men perish. God allows people to go to hell correct? But Spurgeon and the like, imply that God has a special concern for the infant and child.

    Example:
    Hosea 13:13 The sorrows of a travailing woman shall come upon him: he is an unwise son; for he should not stay long in the place of the breaking forth of children.
    Hosea 13:14 I will ransom them from the power of the grave; I will redeem them from death: O death, I will be thy plagues; O grave, I will be thy destruction: repentance shall be hid from mine eyes.
    Hosea 13:15 Though he be fruitful among his brethren, an east wind shall come, the wind of the LORD shall come up from the wilderness, and his spring shall become dry, and his fountain shall be dried up: he shall spoil the treasure of all pleasant vessels.
    Hosea 13:16 Samaria shall become desolate; for she hath rebelled against her God: they shall fall by the sword: their infants shall be dashed in pieces, and their women with child shall be ripped up.
    Hosea 14:1 O Israel, return unto the LORD thy God; for thou hast fallen by thine iniquity.

    Rom 9:9 For this is the word of promise, At this time will I come, and Sarah shall have a son.
    Rom 9:10 And not only this; but when Rebecca also had conceived by one, even by our father Isaac;
    Rom 9:11 (For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth;)
    Rom 9:12 It was said unto her, The elder shall serve the younger.
    Rom 9:13 As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.
    Rom 9:14 What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? God forbid.
    Rom 9:15 For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.
    Rom 9:16 So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that showeth mercy.

    [ November 12, 2002, 08:54 PM: Message edited by: Scott_Bushey ]
     
  17. Scott_Bushey

    Scott_Bushey
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    I add:
    For instance, during the time of Pharaoh's hardening, Israel was Gods seperate, chosen peoples.......At this time, were Egyptians being saved? Was the promise to Egypt? What about Egyptian children?
     
  18. KenH

    KenH
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    Scott,

    What do you think about the idea that infants that die are not guilty of personal sin in their lifetime - regardless of nationality. They are guilty with Adam, absolutely. But they have not exhibited the sin nature before death - especially those that were aborted.

    It is true that we can never resolve this issue as there is no clear Biblical warrant to do so. Perhaps it is the sentimental, compassionate side of us that hopes that all those who die in the womb, in infancy, and at a young age are saved - all those who were without capability of exhibiting signs of regeneration.

    Ken
     
  19. Scott_Bushey

    Scott_Bushey
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    Ken asks:
    What do you think about the idea that infants that die are not guilty of personal sin in their lifetime - regardless of nationality.

    Scott inquires:
    Ken, It is not only personal sin that condemns a man(or infant).

    Ken adds;
    But they have not exhibited the sin nature before death

    Scott states:
    I don't see this to be relevant in the light of Adamic imputation and it's effect.

    You add:
    It is true that we can never resolve this issue as there is no clear Biblical warrant to do so. Perhaps it is the sentimental, compassionate side of us that hopes that all those who die in the womb, in infancy, and at a young age are saved - all those who were without capability of exhibiting signs of regeneration.

    Scott says:
    I agree w/ your sentiments Ken, but from a biblical standpoint, our opinions are just that opinions and emotions.
     
  20. KenH

    KenH
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    Absolutely. I can't argue with that. [​IMG]

    Ken
     

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