The Instigator
creationtruth
Con (against)
Winning
11 Points
The Contender
Creationist14
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points

Sin Nature

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Post Voting Period
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after 2 votes the winner is...
creationtruth
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/16/2015 Category: Religion
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 793 times Debate No: 68466
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (8)
Votes (2)

 

creationtruth

Con

Please only accept this debate if you are a Christian.

I am arguing against the Augustinian doctrine that all people have inherited a sin nature as a result of Adam's fall in the garden of Eden.

I am a Bible-believing Christian and a believer in a literal, historical Genesis account.

Round 1 - Introduction/Acceptance
Round 2- Opening Arguments
Round 3 - Rebuttals Only
Round 4 - Defense of Arguments Only
Creationist14

Pro

In the account in Genesis, it says clearly that Adam and Eve sinned. Afterward, they had to make sacrifices to God for every sin. If you really believe the Bible, how can you believe that and this:
"Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men because all sinned- for before the law was given, sin was in the world. But sin is not taken into account when there is no law. Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking the command, as did Adam, who was a pattern of the one to come. But the gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God's grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many! Again, the girt of God is not like the result of the one man's sin: The judgment followed one sin and brought condemnation, but the gift followed many trespasses and brought justification. For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God's abundant provision of grace and of the gift of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ. Consequently, just as the result of one trespass was condemnation for all men, so also the result of one act of righteousness was justification that brings life for all men. 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. The law was added so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more, so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.- Romans 5:12-21
That is black and white, we all sin through Adam. Besides, if we didn't sin, what would the point of Jesus coming?
Debate Round No. 1
creationtruth

Con

I had stipulated that the first round was for introduction and acceptance only, but no matter since you did not really make an argument. Let me begin by stating my case and I will then address the passage you quoted. I will be using the King James Bible by the way, not whatever version you are using.

First of all, it is important for us to define what sin is. ". . .sin is the transgression of the law" (1 John 3:4). God has placed a law within our hearts which our conscious bears witness to (Romans 2:15). When we transgress, or violate this law, we sin. Sin is a product of the mind/heart which results in an imagined or realized action (Matthew 5:28). Sin is therefore an abstract entity which cannot be transferred or passed down from one person to another. The general claim of those who teach that Adam's sin has caused all men to be born with a nature of sin is unbiblical and illogical. By what mechanism is this sin nature transferred from parent to offspring? Since sin is an abstract entity, it cannot be biologically transferred.

The only other option, for a sin nature proponent, is to say that God supernaturally imputes a sin nature to all children at conception. This would violate God's righteousness as He would be guilty of injustice toward all humanity. If God imputed a sin nature to all men, as a result of Adam's original sin, then this would mean that God would be unjust in condemning anyone to the Lake of Fire since they had no choice in the matter. The Bible reveals that God is a just and righteous God who does not impute the iniquity of the father upon the son (Ezekiel 18:20). This truth makes it clear that God indeed does not ascribe guilt to a person for their parent's sinful actions. To be sure, the idea that infants are born with the guilt of sin is abominable and denigrates the character of my Father.

If one wisely rejects the notion of imputed guilt but still maintains the sin nature as merely a curse brought up
on all men, as death, then one must consider the where such a belief logically leads one to. If the sin nature is a curse which affects all born children, then this still leads to the injustice of God. It is no different than imputed guilt as the moment a person sins for the first time, he or she becomes guilty, but this sin was not the result of a free-will choice but a depraved estate. A sin nature proponent holding to this view would have to decide whether this nature compelled one to sin by force, or merely left one in a state of propensity toward sin. In either case, this leaves the sinner guilty as a result of a curse brought on by Adam. This in turn makes God unjust as every sinner would be able to point to Adam as their reason for guilt and not their own conscious decision since this sin nature either by force compelled them to sin at first chance or in-time, as a result of a propensity toward evil. So we see, that logically, we cannot hold a person guilty of sin, and God just in condemning said sinner, unless a person has an unguided will of their own in which they can make decisions, righteous or sinful, of their own volition.

Response to Romans 5

Very simply, the quoted passage does not say that we have all sinned "through Adam" (what would that even mean?) nor does it state that we inherit either guilt or a sinful nature. Sin entered the world, it did not enter men, through Adam, having headship over Eve, as he was the first to sin. From this act of sin, the curse of death came upon all men, not a sinful nature. When considering verse 19, we must take into account the context. Notice the comparison between Adam and Christ. Notice also that there is a distinction made between the condemnation which comes as a result of Adam's one sin to all mankind (which is death), and the gift of life which comes as a result of Christ's death and shed blood which covers every sin (of those who trust in Him). Notice it is death which came upon all men, for all have sinned, even those who sinned before the Mosaic Law entered because, as Romans 2:15 states, all men have an eternal law written on their hearts. The dichotomy throughout the passage is that Adam has brought death into the world but Christ has brought life everlasting. So coming back to verse 19, we see that many were made, that is, appointed, accounted, or designated sinners in that they were condemned to death. Notice the same word "made" is used for those who were made sinners and those who shall be made righteous. Saints are not forced to be righteous, but are appointed, accounted, or designated as righteous because of Christ's finished work upon the cross. So clearly this verse does not teach that we inherit Adam's guilt, but as sinners, we inherit the condemnation of death, as a curse, just as child bearing pain was passed to all women.

Since you left me with a question, which is easily answered by stating that we have indeed all sinned, allow me to leave you with one. If Christ was fully man did, He have a sin nature?
Creationist14

Pro

First of all, of course Jesus did not have a sin nature, because He was fully man, fully God. He didn't even come to the world biologically, but by the Spirit. And He was fully man in the sense He was fully flesh. Oh, sorry for violating the format of the debate, I did not realize. I'm new.
Referring to your first argument, I don't mean it was transferred biologically. But if Adam hadn't sinned, we would be perfect. Unless , of course someone else sinned. So, it is our choice to sin to a degree, but before Adam, it was not our nature to sin. Sin had not been brought into the world yet. He sinned, making sin real to us and "through the one man the many were made sinners."
Also, the death mentioned in Romans could also be taken as the spiritual death, because that also entered the world through him.
Of course infants our born with a sinful nature. Everyone is born with sin, because Adam sinned and brought it into the world. But I believe that God would allow a dead infant into heaven because they do not understand how to be forgiven.
Another question: do you just believe that when sin entered the world, we just started sinning because it was there?
If we weren't born with a sin nature, then wouldn't Adam and Eve have withheld the knowledge of sin from their children, and they wouldn't have sinned?
Debate Round No. 2
creationtruth

Con

So to be clear, in this round we are only rebutting each others claims made thus far, not defending our own.

You say, ". . .Jesus did not have a sin nature, because He was fully man, fully God." How does this answer the question? I do believe that He was fully God, but God manifest in the flesh (1 Timothy 3:16)! If you hold to the belief that all humans receive a sinful nature from their ancestors, then so to must Christ have received this nature as He was dual-natures, fully man and fully God. He is traced all the way back to Adam, as his descendant in Luke's genealogical account of Christ (Luke 3:38). He is the son of Adam, which, if all Adam's descendants receive a sinful nature, and "sinned through Adam," would demand that Christ too be a guilty sinner with an inclination to sin despite His divine nature. There is just no way to logically and biblically rectify this problem presented by the fallacious doctrine of the sin nature.

You say, "He didn't even come to the world biologically, but by the Spirit." But you then contradict yourself by saying, ". . .He was fully flesh." If He indeed was fully flesh, then He came into the world biologically. He was born of Mary according to the flesh (Luke 2:1-21). Unless you would arbitrarily claim that this sin nature only passes down through fathers, Christ would inherit this sinful nature according to this abominable doctrine!

You say, "But if Adam hadn't sinned, we would be perfect." In what sense? As newborn infants? Or as conscious, accountable people? The term perfect seems arbitrary to me. A better term would be innocent. I believe all people are born innocent, and are judged as such until they commit their first sin.

You say, "So, it is our choice to sin to a degree, but before Adam, it was not our nature to sin." What does that even mean? To a degree? Either we sin by our own volition, or else we cannot be justly condemned as guilty transgressors. We must really define for each what we each believe "nature" to mean. What do you mean by nature? I believe nature is biblically defined as natural constitution. For example, "For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law. . ." Notice gentiles do by NATURE the things contained in God's eternal law. If we had corrupt moral constitutions at conception, how could gentiles keep the law by NATURE?

You say, " Sin had not been brought into the world yet." I already addressed this, sin was brought in, in the sense that the world first saw sin with Adam and Eve. Sin is an abstract entity formed by a conscious, sentient person, not a physical, tangible object or spirit. Sin cannot compel a person; persons may sin, but sin itself does not exist beyond the cognitive thoughts or decisions of a man or woman.

You say, "He sinned, making sin real to us and 'through the one man the many were made sinners.'" What does that even mean, that sin was "made real to us?" I also already addressed Romans 5:19. You may rebut my argument in the next round.

You say, "Also, the death mentioned in Romans could also be taken as the spiritual death. . ." No it cannot since the only "spiritual death" the Bible speaks of is the second death in which souls shall be cast into the Lake of Fire. Your arbitrary usage of the term "spiritual death" is unbiblical. It is just a way of saying we are born depraved and separated from God, which is indeed not the case if gentiles can by nature fulfill aspects of the eternal moral law.

You say, "Of course infants our born with a sinful nature. Everyone is born with sin, because Adam sinned and brought it into the world. " This is not an argument, it is an unsupported statement. Chapter and verse? Of course you cannot give one since this entire doctrine is unbiblical. Where does the Bible say everyone is born with sin? What does that even mean?

You say, "But I believe that God would allow a dead infant into heaven because they do not understand how to be forgiven." That is not logically consistent. God will not allow sin to go unpunished. To make a plea for the child's ignorance is to support my case and refute your own. If a child be "born with sin," then he is condemned! The only way to be saved from sin is repentance through faith in the shed blood of Jesus Christ (Romans 3:25). Do you see how ridiculous it is to say infants are born with sin on their account when they have not yet sinned themselves?

You ask, ". . .do you just believe that when sin entered the world, we just started sinning because it was there?" I do not understand the question. I believe all men sin of their own volition in rebellion to God, not because of Adam and not because of a sin nature which compels them to sin.

You ask, "If we weren't born with a sin nature, then wouldn't Adam and Eve have withheld the knowledge of sin from their children, and they wouldn't have sinned?" No. How did Adam and Eve sin? They had no sin nature, and yet sin was possible. Again, what is sin?
Creationist14

Pro

Creationist14 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
creationtruth

Con

I'm sorry you forfeited your round 3 argument. In keeping with the stipulated format for this debate, I will now give a defense of my arguments despite the lack of rebuttals against them.

Adam, Eve and Lucifer

Almost every sin nature proponent agrees that Adam and Eve had no sinful nature since everything God had made was declared to be "very good" (Genesis 1:31). How then were they able to sin against God, transgressing the command He gave them concerning the tree of the knowledge of good and evil? The answer is that they did so volitionally by their own willful choice. They were tempted by the Devil and, giving in to said temptation, transgressed the eternal law of God written on their hearts; they desired the high and lofty position of Godhood (Genesis 3:5). This should remind the Bible-reading Christian of Lucifer's fall. Ezekiel 28 and Isaiah 14 contain allusions to the fall of Satan in which we find the cause of his willful act of rebellion: he desired to be as God. Notice Isaiah 14:13-14, "For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High." Here we see that the initial act of sin began in his heart (v. 13). He consciously desired to be like the most High God (v. 14). Notice also his desire expressed four times as "I will;" clearly Lucifer had a God-given will of which he exercised in rebelling against God. Did Lucifer have a sinful nature from his creation? Of course not, all things God had made were very good! Likewise, Adam and Eve had no "nature" which compelled them to sin or which left them in a state of depravity in which they could do nothing else but sin. This too is how every sentient man or angel is created---with an unguided will which can be used to do good or evil.

The Justice of God's Judgment

The Bible makes it clear that sin is a willful act or thought of disobedience. In order for an act or thought to be considered sinful, it is required that the sentient person be conscious and accountable (i.e. they must know that what they are doing or thinking is wrong). Clearly, if a person did not know an action or thought was wrong, they could not be justly held accountable. This is very much like the plea of "insanity" in the court of law. If it could be proven beyond reasonable doubt that the defendant did not have the capacity to understand right from wrong, his or her verdict would be "not guilty." This is in following with the simple logic that a wrong action can only be labelled as such when the person carrying out said action is aware of its "wrongness." Consider a mentally handicapped person who's brain activity renders him or her in a state of infancy their entire life. If that person were to pick up a knife, throw it, and kill someone, would they be guilty of sin? Of course not. Why is a lion not held accountable as a guilty sinner for breaking the commandment of God, "thou shall not kill?" We understand that an animal cannot be held guilty because it does not posses the cognitive capacity for understanding God's moral laws and is therefore not accountable to God. Likewise, a child cannot be held as a sinner since it does not posses the knowledge of right and wrong. And less you think an infants non-compliance, crying or fussing are examples of its sinfulness, consider that all mammalian babies exhibit similar behavior, it is how God programmed them. God created all creatures with a will to survive, and the survival of baby depends on mom hearing its cries, seeing its fussing, etc. Now in considering God's justice, one cannot rightfully call God just if He condemns the ignorant to hell. Notice that at the white throne judgment, men are judged according to their works (Revelation 2:11-13). Clearly they must be accountable in order to be judged by their actions. Allow me to give you one more example to really drive this home. Imagine I allowed my dog to sleep in bed with me for 10 years. Then one day I become filled with wrath and hit the dog repeatedly, killing it, for getting on the bed. Is that just? The dog did not know any better so of course that is unjust.

In conclusion, I must plea with the prospective reader as well as my opponent to recognize the blasphemy of this doctrine which accuses God of injustice. Besides the fact that there is not one verse of scripture describing a sin nature or inherited guilt, and many to the contrary, it is clear that ascribing guilt to infants from conception is an abomination! The Bible is clear, though man has been made upright with the ability to be righteous, "All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way;" thank God for our Lord Jesus Christ who was, "wounded for our transgressions" and on whom the "inequities of us all" were laid upon" (Isaiah 53:5-6)!

Zephaniah 3:5 - The Just Lord!
Creationist14

Pro

Creationist14 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
8 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Posted by creationtruth 2 years ago
creationtruth
Esiar - Clearly you did not understand my argument. If God mad us, then why would we be born sinful? Ecclesiastes 7:29 says that man has been made upright, but as a result of our willful choice to disobey we have gone astray. You addressed one claim, which I will address below, why don't you address the others?

You said, "This isn't true. Just because one can learn to be good, that doesn't mean one can learn to be evil. That standard makes no sense." Your argument is that it does not make sense to you? Its very simple, if you are at a cognitive level of development in which you arrive at a conscience understanding of "good," then of necessity you must also know evil. If you learned that telling the truth was good, then adversely you would know that telling a lie was bad. The two are inseparable.

You said, "Secondly, there is never a baby that doesn't do things that aren't good or bad, and the parents teach to do bad. The babies always ignorantly sin, and the parents either teach them not to or they let it slide." You contradict your own argument by admitting the babies are ignorant. They therefore cannot be sinful, anymore than a lion can be held accountable for killing an antelope.
Posted by Esiar 2 years ago
Esiar
creation truth -

Job 31:15 only says that God made us
Malachi 2:10 says that God made us, and that Jews have profaned the covenant
Psalm 119:73 says that God made us, and the Psalmist ask God to give them understanding.
Ecclesiastes 7:29 says God made man to be righteous, but we have all turned away.
Romans 2:15 says that our conscience knows that sin is wrong.

You said, "If obedience is learned, then surely disobedience is also a cognitively acquired understanding in which a person learns to choose evil over good.".

This isn't true. Just because one can learn to be good, that doesn't mean one can learn to be evil. That standard makes no sense. Secondly, there is never a baby that doesn't do things that aren't good or bad, and the parents teach to do bad. The babies always ignorantly sin, and the parents either teach them not to or they let it slide.
Posted by creationtruth 2 years ago
creationtruth
missmedic - You need to determine what it means that the Lord would visit the iniquity of the fathers upon the children. Also, Deuteronomy 24:16 deals with visiting condemnation upon the children for the father's sins. This refutes the sin nature position. As far as their being a contradiction, clearly Exodus 34:7 must mean something other than passing guilt on innocent children. It must mean that the children would suffer the consequences of their father's sins just as we die and suffer aging and disease as a result of Adam's sin though we do not inherit His guilt. The believing Christian never relinquishes seemingly conflicting texts to contradiction, rather, as being faithful to God, His word, and His character, accepts fault in his or her understanding. When a single verse seems to conflict a multitude of other passages which clearly testify of a particular truth, the conflicting passage likely is not properly understood and is being interpreted incorrectly. When this happens, the faithful Christian prays to God for understanding and studies to show himself approved unto God (2 Timothy 2:15).
Posted by creationtruth 2 years ago
creationtruth
Creationist14 - Two things to consider with Psalm 51:5: it is a poetic text, and it is possible that the reference of inequity and sin is referring to the mother not the infant child. If the interpretation, that this verse testifies of all children being born sinners, then it would run directly counter and in contradiction to the truth that God is the one who formed us in the womb and hath created us upright with the ability to perform His law (Job 31:15, Malachi 2:10, Psalm 119:73, Ecclesiastes 7:29, Romans 2:15). Ecclesiastes 7:29 in particular answers the question for us, whether or not we sin by choice or by the compelling of our "nature." Men are born upright, innocent, and ignorant of evil until they grow up and develop and learn "to refuse the evil, and choose the good" (Isaiah 7:16). All men, including Christ, are born with the ability to sin as they have a will of their own, but we are not born with a propensity toward sin. That is simply unbiblical. You cannot go against clear texts concerning the justice of God and the innocence of children with a poetic text that may very well be referring to David's mother. We don't "discover how to sin," rather, at the age of accountability, whatever that may be for each individual, we arrive at a developmental stage where we are now able to comprehend good and evil, and are now able to make conscious decision either to violate God's eternal law written on our hearts or to act in accordance with it. Sin is the transgression of God's law (1 John 3:4). Any sentient creature with a will, a soul and a conscience can choose to sin against God or to obey Him, just as Satan and Adam chose to disobey and Christ chose to obey. Notice also that Christ learned obedience (Hebrews 5:8). If obedience is learned, then surely disobedience is also a cognitively acquired understanding in which a person learns to choose evil over good.
Posted by Creationist14 2 years ago
Creationist14
creationtruth- it tells us that we were born in sin, with sin. We didn't just discover how to sin when we grew up.
Posted by missmedic 2 years ago
missmedic
Why is there a contradiction between the two, and which one is right.
Exodus 34:6-7 "The Lord passed before him and proclaimed, "The Lord, the Lord, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but who will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children and the children"s children, to the third and the fourth generation."
Deuteronomy 24:16 says "Fathers shall not be put to death for their sons, nor shall sons be put to death for their fathers; everyone shall be put to death for his own sin" and that "The son will not bear the punishment for the father"s iniquity, nor will the father bear the punishment for the son"s iniquity; the righteousness of the righteous will be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked will be upon himself"
Posted by creationtruth 2 years ago
creationtruth
Esiar - And that tells us what?
Posted by Esiar 2 years ago
Esiar
Psalm 51:5 says, "Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.".
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Vote Placed by RomanCatholic 2 years ago
RomanCatholic
creationtruthCreationist14Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: I agree with Pro, but con did a better job
Vote Placed by lannan13 2 years ago
lannan13
creationtruthCreationist14Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: Forfeiture