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Sin and Alienation

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Introduction

Sin and Alienation Sin is something which is widely applicable in all time periods. We have to realise that sin is something which occupies not just one person but rather encompasses the whole human race, as Paul asserts in Romans 3 v 10; "No one is righteous, not even one." This verse strikes us as poignant as we see everyone is flawed. However sin is not something we escape from on our own as "the wages for sin are death" and alienation from God. In order to comprehend the outcome of sin we must look at the effects sin has in both the bible and the early church. Sin was not always in existence but rather its presence is felt in Genesis in the Garden of Eden when Eve was tempted to eat the fruit from the tree of knowledge (Genesis 3).It was then the concept of right and wrong occurred, this was notably named "The Fall" as man's stance with God was ruined and a distinct alienation between man and God occurred. It was this incident which gave rise to the comprehension that there is original sin and no one enters the world righteous, but rather we are all held as sinners. It is our free will which enables us to choose whether to give into the temptation of sin or follow God; it is not decided for us. ...read more.

Middle

Paul reprimands the sins of Corinthians; "27Therefore, whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of sinning against the body and blood of the Lord. 28A man ought to examine himself before he eats of the bread and drinks of the cup. 29For anyone who eats and drinks without recognizing the body of the Lord eats and drinks judgment on himself. 30That is why many among you are weak and sick, and a number of you have fallen asleep. "(1 Corinthians v 27 - 30) In the Corinthians' sin they were alienating themselves from God whilst still continuing to heap damnation upon themselves. Was there a cure for this sin and alienation? Paul asks them to check their motives prior to partaking of the bread and wine thus ensuring that they are worthy. The New Testament employs the word 'Hamartia' which is a Greek word which means missing the target, due to our fallibility as humans we all miss the mark at some point and give into to sin However there is an alternative to these actions and that comes from reconciliation with Christ; "23For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." (Romans 6:23) The solution for sin is Jesus, and He took upon our sin and experienced death for us to relieve us of the punishment we warrant. ...read more.

Conclusion

The writings of Apostolic Fathers also featured teaching on sin and the appropriate way to deal with it. The Shepherd of Hermas refers to sin as "an evil desire within the heart" and that a person seeking restoration to the church could do so by putting the double mindedness from their heart. Origen asserts that Christ's death paid the price to Satan for our souls in order to enable our salvation. Irenaeus made emphasis on the part of Christ being a substitute for Adam, thus prompting the idea of recapitulation, Adams disobedience on the tree of knowledge was declared gone by Jesus act of perfect obedience on the tree (the cross), the sin of man is cancelled by Christ. Athanasisus puts forth that Christ act to achieve redemption was done in order to remake humanity in God's image like were supposed to be. This helps to highlight that sin was an issue for Christians not just in a particular time period but rather throughout time. However there is a solution to the act of sinning - this is the salvation power of Christ Jesus who took upon our sins in order to restore us and enable us to be capable of having eternal life. Sin can no longer hold us down but rather it has been defeated. The emphasis in the twenty first century is that we too can achieve forgiveness for sin in the same way as in the early church; however we ascribe to a more personal penance in which we confess through the direct line to God. ...read more.

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