What are the Effects of Sin?


Which are the chief sources of sin?1

The chief sources of sin are seven: Pride, Covetousness, Lust, Anger, Gluttony, Envy, and Sloth; and they are commonly called capital sins.

Did God, then, create man so wicked and perverse?2

No, on the contrary, God created man good (Genesis 1:31) and in his image (Genesis 1:26-27), that is, in true righteousness and holiness (Ephesians 4:24), so that he might rightly know God his Creator (Colossians 3:10), heartily love him, and live with him in eternal blessedness to praise and glorify him (Psalm 8).

But are we so corrupt that we are totally unable to do any good and inclined to all evil?3

Yes (Genesis 6:5; 8:21; Job 14:4; Isaiah 53:6), unless we are regenerated by the Spirit of God (John 3:3-5).

Do people still have the image of God?4

No, this image was lost when our first parents disobeyed God and fell into sin. Their will and intellect lost the ability to know and please God. In Christians God has begun to rebuild His image, but only in heaven will it be fully restored (Genesis 3:8-10; Genesis 5:3; 1 Corinthians 2:14; Psalm 17:15).

What is the misery of that estate whereinto man fell?5

All mankind by their fall lost communion with God (Genesis 3:8, 24; John 8:34, 42, 44; Ephesians 2:12; 4:18), are under his wrath (John 3:36; Romans 1:18; Ephesians 2:3; 5:6) and curse (Galatians 3:10; Revelation 22:3), and so made liable to all miseries in this life (Genesis 3:16-19; Job 5:7; Ecclesiastes 2:22-23; Romans 8:18-23), to death (Ezekiel 18:4; Romans 5:12; 6:23) itself, and to the pains of hell for ever (Matthew 25:41, 46; 2 Thessalonians 1:9; Revelation 14:9-11).

Did God leave all mankind to perish in the state of sin and misery?6

God having, out of his good pleasure from all eternity, elected some to everlasting life (2 Thessalonians 2:13), did enter into a covenant of grace to deliver them out of the state of sin and misery, and to bring them into a state of salvation by a Redeemer (Romans 5:21).

What doth every sin deserve?7

Every sin deserveth God’s wrath and curse, both in this life, and that which is to come (Matthew 25:41; Galatians 3:10; Ephesians 5:6; James 2:10).

Footnotes

  1. Baltimore Larger Catechism (1885), Question 59.
  2. Heidelberg Catechism (1563), Question 6.
  3. Heidelberg Catechism (1563), Question 8.
  4. Luther’s Small Catechism (1529), Question 107.
  5. Westminster Shorter Catechism (1647), Question 19.
  6. A Puritan Catechism (1855), Question 19.
  7. Westminster Shorter Catechism (1647), Question 84.

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