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What do Christians mean when they say that ''Man is estranged from God'' ? What evidence do they have for this belief?

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Introduction

What do Christians mean when they say that ''Man is estranged from God'' ? What evidence do they have for this belief? When Christians look at Genesis 1, 2 and 3 they say that sin came from the disobedience of God. This was when mankind chose to do wrong instead of doing right to gain knowledge which God had forbidden them . Genesis 1 and 2 tell of God creating a perfect universe with humans as the climax of creation, He made us with free will so giving us the right to choose whether to do right or wrong. In Genesis 3 humans use this free will to do wrong, the story tells of Eve (woman) being convinced by a snake to eat the forbidden fruit and she, in turn, persuading Adam (man) to do the same. This is called the Fall of Man, and is interpreted by Christians in different ways. Fundamentalists like Emperor Augustine, and St. Thomas Aquinas believe that there was one man and one woman and they did eat fruit from a forbidden tree and talk to a snake. Then God came to them and punished them. They believe that everyone else inherits this sin and punishment because we are all descended from Adam and Eve. This is called original sin. However there are people who do not believe this interpretation literally,called theologians, who believe the Genesis story is a mythological interpretation. ...read more.

Middle

2:25. This could mean that they were literally naked or that they had nothing to hide from each other like secrets or ideals . They were also equal partners in life '' a man will leave his father and mother and be united with his wife and they will become one flesh'' Gen. 2:24 . However after the fall man and women were not at one with each other. Firstly, man blamed woman for the disobedience of God and so for their suffering, this was a loss of trust between them. Man and woman were no longer content with being naked with each other, they became embarrassed "The eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized that they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves'' They were no longer equal partners either, God told Eve that "Your desire will be for your husband and he will rule over you.'' This means that they were no longer partners in the same way and that man was now above woman and that she should obey him. This is moral suffering and is also hard on Christians, it involves making decisions which rest easy with your conscience and could involve areas such as abortion and euthanasia. Again this is not perpetual suffering and Christians believe it will end when they die and that they must endure it to be at one with God again. ...read more.

Conclusion

All of these things add to the third type of suffering, spiritual suffering. Christians believe that this suffering is the worst because unlike physical and moral suffering, spiritual suffering is infinite. Christians believe that this estrangement is everlasting and will cause them the most pain, even if they are no longer in their earthly bodies. There is only one way to get back to God for humans; through Jesus and his teachings. Christians believe that Jesus died to take away the sins of humanity "Mary will have a son and you are to call him Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins" Matthew 1:21 . They believe that although man brought sin upon himself God was willing to sacrifice his own son to save his people. " So then as one sin (man's disobedience of God) condemned all mankind, in the same way the one righteous act (Jesus' death and resurrection) sets all mankind free and gives them life. Romans 5:18 Because of this Christians try their best to follow Jesus' teachings and to live life as he did. This could include donating money to the poor, being forgiving of those who have done wrong, and caring for those who need care, regardless of personal feelings, values or beliefs. It is through Jesus' teachings that Christians believe they will gain atonement with God and so will no longer be estranged from him. Carrie-Anne Reid 5TH RMPS Mrs. Smith Sin and Suffering ...read more.

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