Man and Sin
What is man? Why did God create man? Why does God seem to care so much about us? Why are we here? God, the Creator of the universe, created us with His imprint on each of us. And He designed us with a purpose. Genesis 1:26-27. God then placed the man, Adam, in the Garden of Eden – the most beautiful, perfect place ever on earth.
The Lord God commanded Adam, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden, but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.” God gave Adam a very specific command: Don’t touch the tree. He also was very clear about the consequences.
Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man. Genesis 2:18, 21-22.She was called Eve.
Man is the only living thing personally and lovingly crafted by the Creator. (Genesis 2:7, 21-22) God made everything else by calling it into existence. Man alone can communicate with God. Man alone has been given the right and responsibility to manage the earth’s resources and to rule over all living things (Genesis 1:26, 28-30.)
Man alone is morally responsible to obey God. (Genesis3). Man alone has both a physical and a spiritual dimension. In addition to this physical body, man has a heart, soul, mind, and will.
The heart is the human control center for emotions and deepest desires.
The soul is eternal but it can be lost in the spiritual sense.
Jesus talked about forfeiting the eternal soul in exchange for what this temporal world has to offer. “What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul? (Matthew 16:26)
The mind of Man, or thinking ability, of a person is capable of many positive things: Loving God – (Mark 12:30) Understanding God’s will (Ephesians 5:17) Praising God – (1 Corinthians 14:15) Being renewed – (Romans 12:2)
But a human’s mind is also capable of many negative things:
Depravity (Romans 1:28), Futility (Ephesians 4:17), Darkness and Ignorance (Ephesians 4:18), Being blinded by Satan (2 Corinthians 4:4).
The will of Man, his ability to choose and pursue desired goals.
God gave man the power and the freedom to make their own decisions—including the decision that would change the human race forever.
So why did God create man, especially since He must have known how man would respond to His command to obey Him? The chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever. We have been given a view of a perfect world. A place where a man and woman could enjoy perfect happiness in perfect freedom, including the freedom to choose—even to choose against God.
Sin: The Fall. Someone once wrote, “Sin is man’s Declaration of Independence from God”. Anonymous.
The entire human race falls short of God’s perfect standard because of sin (Romans 3:23). Our sin leads to death, but God has given us a way out: Eternal life through Jesus Christ. (Romans 6:23).
Pleasing God is a good description of the opposite of sin. The Bible describes both our actions and our nature as sin when we rebel against God.
A correct view of sin is very important to both God and man: To God because it saddens Him, because sin brings His children consequences, and because it separates us form Him. To humans because we are accountable to God for our actions, because sin brings us consequences, and because it separates us from Him.
A clear understanding of sin depends upon a true view of God and humankind. God is holy, just, and righteous. Any sin – no matter how seemingly insignificant- violates His absolute standard of holiness. And, as His created beings, we are subject to His laws and plan. Man and woman were created just the way God wanted them to be. They had committed no evil deed. But remember God’s one rule. Genesis 2:16
Along comes Satan, Genesis 3, (having been kicked out of heaven earlier and allowed to roam around earth) takes on the form of a serpent and talks to Eve. And even though she had never before heard a lie, she believed Satan and doubted God. Adam and Eve would choose to believe Satan’s lies rather than to believe and obey God’s rules. This darkest day in the history of mankind has been known ever since as The Fall. It was the day on which the sin virus invaded the world and infected mankind with deadly consequences.
When God confronted them, He issued the following consequences for their disobedience:
- For both Adam and Eve:
Physical and spiritual death (Genesis 2:17)
Expulsion from the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:23)
- For Eve and all women who follow her:
Pain in childbirth (Genesis 3:16)
Submission to husband (Genesis 3:16)
- For Adam and all men who follow him:
A lifetime of “painful toil” to get food from the earth (Genesis 3:17-19)
- For the serpent:
Cursed to forever crawl on its belly and eat dust (Genesis 3:14)
- For Satan:
God declared that Satan would injure the heel of woman’s offspring but that her offspring would crush the head of Satan (Genesis 3:15). This is the first Bible reference to the future events when Satan’s evil influence over humankind would bring about the crucifixion of Jesus (thereby “injuring the heel” of woman’s offspring). But Jesus will eventually crush Satan when the devil is forever cast into a lake of fire.
Two simple truths we should remember from the disaster in the Garden: God wants what’s best for us, no matter what anyone says. And, obedience to Him leads to the best that life has to offer.
Adam and Eve’s great offense was not the eating of the fruit but the act of deliberate disobedience.
The Bible clearly teaches that their sin, as with all sin, carries the penalties of: Natural death, (Romans 5:12-14) and Spiritual death. (Ephesians 2:12).
Remember there can be no little sin till we can find a little God.” – John Wesley
Because of Adam’s sin, we are sinners in two critical ways: We inherit a sin nature. The sin nature is inherited at birth and passed from one generation to the next. Psalm 51:5
We carry a sin debt. Sin is directly charged against us because Adam was a representative of mankind in the Garden. As our representative, when he sinned, we sinned. (Romans 5:12) The concept of inherited sin would seem unfair, except that God has provided a way for us to inherit the righteousness of Jesus Christ.
For in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive (1 Corinthians 15:22)
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. (Romans 5:19)
In short, as humans, we get inherited and imputed sin automatically. Also, as humans we can receive inherited and imputed righteousness as a gift—but we have to ask for it,.
Satan would like for us to think that: God is so forgiving that He will overlook sin.
God is a loving God who won’t really punish us. The sins we commit aren’t really that bad. The few sins we have committed are offset by the good things that we do.
God’s holiness is displayed by how He treats sin. At the same time, God’s goodness is displayed by the pardon He provides for sin.
The unhappy truth about sin is that the seeds of evil in the world seem to be planted in everyone’s heart.
- Sin is anything that goes against God’s holy nature.
- Because of Adam and Eve’s disobedience, sin affects the entire human race.
- We are just as responsible for sin as Adam and Eve.
- The main consequences of sin are spiritual and physical death and the threat of eternal separation from God.
- We are all born sinners by nature and can’t make up for our nature by good works.
- Our holy and just God judges sin.
- Our loving and forgiving God has made pardon and new life available for sinners.