The Fall of Man: Sin & Separation from God

Okay, I don't usually do this, but I'm going to post some stuff on sin that I'm getting ready to go through for our church's Mile Marker I class. Most of what I'm posting in my blog will be in an appendix at the end of the notes. There is just so much to cover and so little time.

I'm posting it here because I've began a conversation with a friend on the blogosphere: Scott Comfort. Scott is a pastor at Northgate Church in Phoenix, AZ. Scott first contacted me because he had been reading the "Love God. Hate Sin." stuff. The conversation has taken several new paths, and most recently we have been discussing how to define sin. The timing was perfect since since I have been asked to teach on the subject for Mile Marker I. 

So…. there may only be 1 or 2 people who read my blog who will even care about all of this. But here you go.

The Fall of Man: Sin and Separation from God

a.      What is Sin?

Between the
Old and New Testaments there are over a dozen words which refer to sin. But
three are the most prominent.

Chatat (taj\x;)) – to miss (OT)

Pesha ([v;p,) –
to revolt (OT)

Hamartia (αμαρτια) – to miss the mark (NT)

therefore, is both “missing the mark” of God’s standard of perfection, and the
state of living in rebellion against him, his law, and his character.

Romans 3:23For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious
standard. (missing the mark)

sin is “any failure to conform to the moral law of God in act, attitude,
or nature” (Wayne Grudem, Systematic Theology, 490.).

Ephesians 2:3 – All of us also lived among
them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature
following its desires and thoughts (attitude). Like the rest, we
were by nature objects of wrath (nature).

b.      The Origin
of Sin

God did not
create sin

Sin is not a
created “substance” but is rather the perversion or corruption of “things”
already in existence.

Sin is not
an eternal equal and opposite force

Sin began
with the rebellion of some angels

Isaiah 14 –  How you have fallen from heaven, O morning star, son of the dawn! You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations! You
said in your heart, "I will
ascend to heaven; I will raise my
throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of
assembly, on the utmost heights
of the sacred mountain. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most
High." But you are brought down to the grave, to the depths of the pit.

Jude 6 – And the angels who did not
keep their positions of authority but abandoned their own home—these he has
kept in darkness, bound with everlasting chains for judgment on the great Day.

2 Peter 2:4 – For if God did not spare
angels when they sinned, but sent them to hell,
 putting them into gloomy
dungeons to be held for judgment

Satan, a
fallen angel, enticed Eve and Adam and Eve also rebelled against God. (Genesis 3)

Adam, sin was transferred to all mankind.

Augustinian View – sin was transferred to the rest of mankind
through natural generation

Covenantal View – sin was transferred to the rest of mankind
because Adam was the head of the human race. God’s gift of eternal life to Adam
(and therefore the rest of mankind) was contingent upon Adam’s obedience.

of HOW it has happened, Scripture is clear that sin transferred from Adam to
all of mankind.

Romans 5:12 – 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

Corinthians 15:22
- For as in
Adam all die, even so in Christ all will be made alive.                           

c.       The Results
of Sin

Sin brings

Physical Death – One consequence of Adam's sin was that
he and the entire human race were to experience physical death. God pronounced

Spiritual Death – Spiritual death is the absolute
absence of fellowship with God. It includes broken communion with God in this lifetime as well as eternal separation from God in a place
called hell. God warned Adam that this would happen in the day that he sinned.  Adam did not die physically on the day that he
sinned, but he did experience broken communion with God 

Genesis 2:17 - but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good
and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.

Romans 6:23For the wages of sin is death,
but the gift of God is eternal life in
 Christ Jesus our Lord.

Sin brings

Not all of
the results of sin are just the “natural” outcome due to the nature of sin.
Some results are direct “consequences” because we are guilty before a holy God.

Romans 5:12-21

Sin brings
corruption (“total depravity”)

Every aspect
of our lives has been corrupted by sin: our intellects, emotions, desires,
hearts, goals, motives, and our physical bodies. This absolute corruption is
referred to as “Total Depravity.”

Jeremiah 17:9The heart is deceitful above
all things
 and beyond cure. Who can understand it?

Romans 3:12 – All have turned away, they have together become
there is no one who does good, not even one.

Romans 7:18 – I know that nothing good lives
in me, that is, in my sinful nature.
 For I have the desire to do
what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 

Because of
our total depravity, man has been rendered incapable of genuinely responding to

Romans 3:10-11 - As it is written: “There is no one righteous, not even one; there is no one who understands, no
one who seeks God