Christ Died for Our ETERNAL Sin


#1

I’ve finally heard the answer to a question I’ve had. On Nov 14, 2006 of CA Live, Tim Staples mentioned that Christ died for our eternal sin, i.e., He died to give us the ability to attain everlasting life. He didn’t die for our sin of cheating on our spouse, missing church on Sunday because we stayed out too late Saturday night, etc., etc… We have to attone for those sins ourselves. He didn’t die for all our sins, just our original sin bestowed on his by Adam and Eve.

How do the OSAS folks respond to this? Or any other Protestants?


#2

[quote=LeahInancsi]…Christ died for our eternal sin, i.e., He died to give us the ability to attain everlasting life.
[/quote]

That is salvation by works; I thought Catholics denied that.

[quote=LeahInancsi]He didn’t die for our sin of cheating on our spouse, missing church on Sunday because we stayed out too late Saturday night, etc., etc… We have to attone for those sins ourselves. He didn’t die for all our sins, just our original sin bestowed on his by Adam and Eve.
[/quote]

Paul says Christ died for the forgiveness of ALL OUR transgressions, and that His death cancelled out ALL OUR debt (Col 2:13, 14). Paul says nothing of Christ dying for Adam’s sin in the sense of original sin.


#3

Why would God have to die for our eternal sins? Is there some kind of law that God was bound by?

Also, it never made sense to me that our eternal sin should be wiped out by committing another sin – the killing of Jesus.


#4

That is certainly NOT what Tim Staples said, nor is it Catholic doctrine. What Tim said is that, as we say in the Agnus Dei, Jesus takes away “the sin of the world”. That is, Jesus atoned for all of the sins that mankind ever committed and will ever commit. Sin is the willful doing of that which is contrary to the will of God. Since the will of God is one thing, and not many things, so sin is not many things, but one thing. That one thing is what Jesus atoned for. And since both the will of God and sin are eternal, the atonement wrought by Jesus needed to be eternal also. And it was (is).

We do not need to atone for sin, neither are we capable of that. We need to repent of sin. It is only because of Jesus’ perfect eternal sacrifice on the cross that repentance has any effect.

Of course that “one thing”, sin, includes all of the actions that comprise it, including “cheating on our spouse, missing church on Sunday because we stayed out too late Saturday night, etc., etc.”.

We do not have to atone for those sins, or any sins. However, we have to pay one way or another for the temporal consequences of those sins. That happens either through suffering or penance in this life or in purgatory. Tim mentioned that original sin is the only sin whose temporal consequences Jesus paid for on the cross. that makes sense, because original sin did not involve any choice or action on our part, so we are not culpable for it.

God bless,
Paul


#5

That is certainly NOT what Tim Staples said, nor is it Catholic doctrine. What Tim said is that, as we say in the Agnus Dei, Jesus takes away “the sin of the world”. That is, Jesus atoned for all of the sins that mankind ever committed and will ever commit. Sin is the willful doing of that which is contrary to the will of God. Since the will of God is one thing, and not many things, so sin is not many things, but one thing. That one thing is what Jesus atoned for. And since both the will of God and sin are eternal, the atonement wrought by Jesus needed to be eternal also. And it was (is).

We do not need to atone for sin, neither are we capable of that. We need to repent of sin. It is only because of Jesus’ perfect eternal sacrifice on the cross that repentance has any effect.

Of course that “one thing”, sin, includes all of the actions that comprise it, including “cheating on our spouse, missing church on Sunday because we stayed out too late Saturday night, etc., etc.”.

We do not have to atone for those sins, or any sins. However, we have to pay one way or another for the temporal consequences of those sins. That happens either through suffering or penance in this life or in purgatory. Tim mentioned that original sin is the only sin whose temporal consequences Jesus paid for on the cross. that makes sense, because original sin did not involve any choice or action on our part, so we are not culpable for it.

God bless,
Paul


#6

I’m reminded of the game “Telegraph” where one person hears one thing and passes it along to another, and so on down the line until the last person has received a message so garbled as to be unrecognizable to the person who initiated it. In this instance, the line was two people long.

I just finished listening to that show and Mr. Staples said nothing close to what you have described. The question he was asked regarded indulgences and he was very clear that there is nothing we can do to pay for the sins we’ve committed against our holy God, our sins have offended Him infinitely and that we are “entirely dependent on the Blood of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ to wash away our sin.” What we can do, however, is cooperate with His Grace and do what we can do in Him to take away the temporal punishment (the sufferings owed to us for our sins) through allowing Christ to work in and through us for our sake and for the sake of others. This is a far cry from your version of Mr. Staples’ reply. Please listen again.


#7

[quote=Valke2]Why would God have to die for our eternal sins? Is there some kind of law that God was bound by?
[/quote]

The reason that God had to die for our sins is that He is the only who can perfectly adhere to the law He gave; the law that God is bound by is His essence. The law is not external to God; God is the law, and the requirement of the law is perfection; man cannot attain to the perfect keeping of the law; if he could, he would be God; the purpose of the law is to show man that he is a sinner (Rom 3:20). So it is necessary that God be just, and punish those who break His law, and that is every human being except one: Jesus, who as a member of the triune God, identified Himself with the lawbreaker—man—by taking on the lawbreaker’s nature; Jesus is, therefore, fully God, and fully man; and thus the only one capable of attaining the requirement of the law, namely, keeping it perfectly, and in that perfect keeping of the law, He satisfied the justice of God.

[quote=Valke2]Also, it never made sense to me that our eternal sin should be wiped out by committing another sin – the killing of Jesus.
[/quote]

In the Pentateuch, Gen. 50:20, with respect to the sinful treatment of Joseph by his brothers, God, through Moses states:As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people alive.All men, with the exception of Christ, are sinful; therefore, sinful men carry out the will and purpose of God; and though sinful men carry out God’s will with evil intent, God directs them with good intent so that He will preserve people alive.


#8

This is a good example of just why we need to be careful to represent one another accurately in discourse, especially with regard to such weightly matters as religion. I certainly never said anything close to what I have been accused. I was making the distinction between the debt of mortal sin (eternal punishment) that we can never atone for, even in cooperation with God’s grace, precisely because the revelation we have been given makes clear that there is a need for a sacrifice of infinite value to appease an infinitely holy God. I cannot give a sacrifice of infinite value. However, I can, with God’s help and grace, atone for the temporal punishment due for sin. Proverbs 16:6 is an excellent biblical example of this very real possibility. “By loyalty and faithfulness iniquity is atoned for.” This cannot be referring to making atonement for the eternal consequences of our sins, thus, it referst to us doing what we can, with God’s help, that is, atoning for the temporal punishment due to our sins.

Tim Staples


#9

I never meant to accuse you of anything. I am most likely guilty of taking this statement out of context. I will go back and listen to the program again.

I’m struggling to understand what is meant by “Christ died for our sins”. If I were to take that statement literally, it would seem that simply by taking Christ as our savior, our sins are forgiven because Christ has already atoned for them. I don’t believe that at all. I do believe that Christ’s death and the events that led up to it are lessons to us on how to achieve everlasting life.

I knew this was going to be a touchly subject when I made this post because I didn’t understand the concept of “Christ died for our sins”. Now, that you and other posters have put your statement into context, I better understand what you were saying at the time. I was hoping it was an answer to my question eventhough it isn’t.

I sincerely apologize for any offense or misrepresentation.


#10

I am not sure that it is. Without washing away of original sin, there was no salvation at all. No matter what “works” you may have accomplished. But because of Christ we are born as new creations without original sin. But we are now accountable for our own sins and thus begins the purification process.

I think that we attain salvation by doing the will of the Father. It isn’t works of ourselves but submission to the will and lordship of God which produces fruit or works of God through us.


#11

“Without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sin”(Torah).

etext.lib.virginia.edu/etcbin/toccer-new2?id=RsvHebr.sgm&images=images/modeng&data=/texts/english/modeng/parsed&tag=public&part=8&division=div1


#12

Oh no, not again… Define salvation by works.


#13

Valke2,

I had similar difficulties in understanding the theology of redemption. Why couldn’t an all-powerful God redeem his people by many other means? Was the Incarnation, passion and death of His Son absolutely necessary for the restoration of humanity? If so, this didn’t seem to make much sense to me. It only made sense to me if God was speaking, through His priestly sacrificial actions, in a particularly Hebrew way, best suited to the 1st century Jews He was attempting to influence, in a context they would understand.

Come to find out…the answer is no. Almighty God could indeed have redeemed us in many number of ways. The Incarnation, passion and death of his Son was the most fitting means chosen by Almighty God. There is no “God law” which obliged him to choose this particular means. :wink:

According to St. Thomas Aquinas:

A thing is said to be necessary for a certain end in two ways. First, when the end cannot be without it; as food is necessary for the preservation of human life. Secondly, when the end is attained better and more conveniently, as a horse is necessary for a journey. In the first way it was not necessary that God should become incarnate for the restoration of human nature. For God with His omnipotent power could have restored human nature in many other ways. But in the second way it was necessary that God should become incarnate for the restoration of human nature… Hence Augustine says (De Trin. xii, 10): “We shall also show that other ways were not wanting to God, to Whose power all things are equally subject; but that there was not a more fitting way of healing our misery.” [St. Thomas Aquinas, *Summa Theologica,

III, 1, 2]

Also, it never made sense to me that our eternal sin should be wiped out by committing another sin – the killing of Jesus.

I think you misunderstand… it wasn’t the sin of those who persecuted Jesus that restored humanity. Jesus could have escaped his persecution at any point. So, Christians understand that Jesus willingly offered Himself as the Lamb of God. He was the perfect High Priest who offered Himself, the perfect Lamb as the atonement sacrifice for the sins of the people of God. From His perspective, it was a willful act of love, not a sin. Thus, it was this act of love that atoned for our sins, as Scripture states, “Love covers a multitude of sins.” (1 Pet 4:8, cf. Proverbs 10:12)


#14

Kudos, Dave! Great post.
God love you,
Paul


#15

This is blatant heresy. It is precisely this kind of blasphemous nonsense that prompted the Reformation in the first place. Catholic apologists and theologians have spent a lot of effort trying to convince us Protestants that this was never Catholic teaching. If Mr. Staples’ views were to become widespread, they would scuttle Protestant-Catholic ecumenism for centuries.

Edwin


#16

I’m very sorry for responding off the cuff without reading the whole thread. I tried to edit this post, but I took so long about it (it didn’t help that my daughter is crying and I’m warming milk to feed her) that the 20-minute time limit passed.

Clearly, as Mr. Staples has said, you have misunderstood him. I am very relieved to find this, because frankly what you are saying is heresy. It’s not remotely close to a Christian theology of salvation.

You have bought into the false claim by some Protestants that if Jesus died for all of our sins then our cooperation with divine grace (except in the mere act of accepting His finished work) is irrelevant. This is the premise you should be challenging, not the premise that Jesus died for all our sins (which is a central truth of the Christian Faith).

If these Protestants were correct, it would follow that even our act of accepting Christ’s finished work was unnecessary. They essentially believe that we are saved by one easy work–accepting Christ’s sacrifice. This view is absurd and un-Biblical.

A more reasonable view is that of some Calvinists, who say that Christ died for all the elect by name. This doesn’t make our response unnecessary, but it does ensure that we will respond. In other words, once Christ has purchased us on the Cross, he then works in us by the Holy Spirit so that we repent, believe, do good works, etc. The problem with this view is that it implies one of two propositions:

  1. Christ did not die for everyone, which is morally repellent and contrary to Scripture and historic Christianity; or

  2. Everyone will be saved, which is an appealing proposition but is also contrary to Scripture (at least in the form “everyone inevitably will be saved” which is implied here).

What we need to question is the proposition that human and divine activity are an either/or. It seems to me that Scripture teaches that it’s a both/and. See Philippians 2–we are to work out our salvation because it is Christ who works in us. That is the key to your dilemma, I think.

I apologize to Mr. Staples for my premature and thoughtless response.

Edwin


#17

Romans 5:11 And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.

Some prots claim that this verse says that Jesus has atoned for ALL sin so the need for penance is mute. Any sin is atoned for when Jesus forgives you of your sin. How would you counter that argument.


#18

Edwin,

I must be having a problem expressing myself. I’m trying to understand what is meant by “Christ died for our sins” without taking the statement literally. I’m not stating heresy, I’m just very confused.

I’m, now, looking for the Catholic interpretation.


#19

That’s not in any Torah I’ve read. I think perhaps you mean the book of Hebrews which, despite its name, has nothing to do with Torah.


#20

Just my 2 cents…

but I think the underlying cause of confusion over Christ’s death talikng away sin is that there is a gross neglect by Catholics (I am one) of putting the meaning of Jesus’s savific death in it’s proper biblical/historical context. By that I mean the whole system of Levitical sacrifice in the Old Testament.

Covering over vs. wiping out sin
finite sacrificial victims vs. Infinite sac. Victim
Atonement vs. forgiveness
justification vs. salvation
redemption vs. salvation

All of these subtle differences could be flushed out with a proper understanding of the Old Testament solution to sin(sacrifice).


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