Man’s Sinful Nature
“Since there is no such thing as original sin, as that expression is used in modern Christendom, it follows that children are not conceived in sin. They do not come into the world with any taint of impurity whatever.” – Bruce R. McConkie (April 1977 Ensign)
“Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned” – Romans 5:13
“Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.” Psalm 51:5
As a new convert to the Church I was required to attend Gospel Principles class during the Sunday school period for new members. The lessons in this class were meant to expound upon what the missionaries taught me and to give more in depth teaching of the core doctrines of the church.
One of these doctrines was the church’s position on original sin, and the fall of Adam and Eve. It was here that I learned of what a blessing the fall was and what a wonderful thing they did for us.
“Some people believe Adam and Eve committed a serious sin when they ate of the tree of knowledge of good and evil. However, latter-day scriptures help us understand that their Fall was a necessary step in the plan of life and a great blessing to all of us.”
The lesson goes on to say:
“Because of the Fall, we are blessed with physical bodies, the right to choose between good and evil, and the opportunity to gain eternal life. None of these privileges would have been ours had Adam and Eve remained in the garden.”
(Gospel Principles, chapter 6)
Sadly the Mormon Church wants to portray God as some sort of trickster, wagging his finger as he tells Adam and Eve “Don’t eat of the fruit”, yet silently hoping they will so all of his spirit children can receive bodies. The sad fact is Adam and Eve’s sin separated us from God. We could have been living in the presence of God forever, never knowing sickness, pain or heartache. Despite Mormonism’s claim about Adam and Eve, we know from scripture this isn’t true. In Genesis 1:27-28 we read:
“God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. God blessed them; and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the earth, and subdue it; and rule over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the sky and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”
Long before Satan entered the Garden, God was counseling them to “be fruitful and multiply”.
Man’s sin nature is a very real thing. I have a five year old who can be very sweet one minute and very sassy the next. All of us need to teach our kids how to walk and talk, how to use utensils and how to ride bikes, but we don’t have to teach them how to disobey, or refuse to listen to us. These things come naturally to them. It’s our sin nature that separates us from God.
“Behold, the LORD’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear: But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.” Isaiah 59:1-2
God isn’t the one who moved away from us, we move away from him through our sin nature and our refusal to repent. However, we don’t have to be bound and controlled by our sin nature forever. We can have a new nature working inside of us, it (the Holy Spirit) comes to work inside of us when we repent and put our trust in Jesus Christ.
Once we become followers of Jesus Christ we’ll still have to deal with our sin nature, but we’ll also have our new nature that’s controlled by the Holy Spirit inside of us as well. These two natures will always be at war with each other. We’ll always have times in our lives when we struggle and get frustrated with ourselves when we don’t do the things we know we should be doing.
As I read the words of Paul on this topic I feel encouraged to know that even he struggled with doing what was right sometimes, and felt disappointed when he didn’t do what he knew he should do.
“For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.” Romans 7:18-19
When I was a Mormon I believed the lies I was told about Adam and Eve and that we weren’t born with a sin nature. Had I remained in Mormonism and continued on this path I would have been separated from God for eternity. Back then I honestly never thought of myself as a “sinner”. Sure, I knew I sometimes did things that I shouldn’t, but I didn’t think it made me a sinner.
I used to think only the “big things” made someone a sinner; things like adultery, having sex before you’re married, homosexuality, and murder. I made the same mistake all lost people make; I believed that I was a good person because I met the world’s standards of what a good person is. It took me some time to see myself as God saw me; I had to look at myself using his standards. It was then that I knew I was a sinner who needed to repent and put her full trust in Jesus Christ for salvation.
God made a way for all of us to cross over the gulf that separates us from him, that way is Jesus Christ. Because of his sacrifice on the cross we can have our sins washed away and our debt paid.
To the Mormon: there is such a thing as original sin, don’t buy into the lie that it doesn’t exist, it does. This has to be one of the most damaging lies you’re being told right now. You are a sinner in need of salvation, but there’s good news. Jesus came to save you from you sins past, present and future; he shed his own blood on the cross for you, so that you could have a home in heaven when you die.
Please consider my words and consider reading our Romans Road to Salvation, there you will learn the real truth about why we’re born with a sin nature, and how we can be saved.
Romans Road to Salvation – http://lifeafterministry.wordpress.com/2011/01/14/romans-road/