Original Sin and Jesus


#1

Howdy folks, I am interested to know how the catholic church views the following.:

What exactly does it mean that Jesus was born without original sin?

Are you saying that Jesus doesn’t have the basic elements of sin in his flesh?

I guess what I am confused about is that scripture says Jesus was tempted like all men are. Does that mean he was tempted in event only, but he never felt sinful temptations?

Are all men except Jesus born in bondage to sin? Or are they born free from the bondage but later bring themselves into bondage?

Thanks,

Jeff


#2

[quote=jphilapy]Howdy folks, I am interested to know how the catholic church views the following.:

What exactly does it mean that Jesus was born without original sin?

Are you saying that Jesus doesn’t have the basic elements of sin in his flesh?

I guess what I am confused about is that scripture says Jesus was tempted like all men are. Does that mean he was tempted in event only, but he never felt sinful temptations?

Are all men except Jesus born in bondage to sin? Or are they born free from the bondage but later bring themselves into bondage?

Thanks,

Jeff
[/quote]

In Catholicism Original Sin is simply the loss of Original Holiness or Original Justice. It is the loss of the vision of God. Christ was born with the vision of God in sight. He knew and loved God from conception.

Christ felt the same temptations we feel but he rejected them. He has the same flesh that we have, a sinful flesh, but his divinity is free from it.

I am not sure right now how to say this better, so I will think about it and maybe come back and post some more.


#3

Given that Jesus was conceived by the Holy Spirit and no man was involved, Original sin did not pass down through from Adam, and Mary was sanctified when Jesus was conceived.


#4

[quote=jphilapy]Howdy folks, I am interested to know how the catholic church views the following.:

What exactly does it mean that Jesus was born without original sin?
[/quote]

Having Original Sin is the same as lacking Sanctifying Grace. Or exactly what jimmy said.

The absence of sanctifying grace-
is an effect of the first sin, for Adam, having received holiness and justice from God, lost it not only for himself but also for us (loc. cit., can. ii). If he has lost it for us we were to have received it from him at our birth with the other prerogatives of our race.

The absence of sanctifying grace is a real privation (absence or lacking), it is the want of something that should have been according to the Divine plan.

Sanctifying grace therefore enters into the moral order, it is a turning towards God. Consequently the lack of this grace, even without any other act, would be a stain, a moral deformity, a turning away from God, and this is not found in any other effect of the fault of Adam. This lack of Sanctifying Grace, therefore, is the hereditary stain.

Are you saying that Jesus doesn’t have the basic elements of sin in his flesh?

That is correct. Original Sin is passed down from Adam. Jesus is a product of Mary (no Original Sin) and the Holy Spirit.

But, as a result of the original seperation from God (brought about by Adam and Eve) we also experience things BESIDES Original Sin:

**Death and Suffering-**These are purely physical evils and cannot be called sin. Moreover St. Paul, and after him the councils, regarded death and original sin as two distinct things transmitted by Adam.

**Concupiscence-**This rebellion of the lower appetite transmitted to us by Adam is an occasion of sin and in that sense comes nearer to moral evil. However, the occasion of a fault is not necessarily a fault, and whilst original sin is effaced by baptism concupiscence still remains in the person baptized; therefore original sin and concupiscence cannot be one and the same thing, as was held by the early Protestants (see Council of Trent, Sess. V, can. v).

What you are referring to relates to concupiscence.

I guess what I am confused about is that scripture says Jesus was tempted like all men are. Does that mean he was tempted in event only, but he never felt sinful temptations?

See above comment on concupiscence.

Are all men except Jesus born in bondage to sin? Or are they born free from the bondage but later bring themselves into bondage?

All are born seperated from God (except Mary and Jesus that we know of). But this doesn’t mean they do not feel the urges to sin. But an urge to sin is not neccesarily a sin.

As an aside Baptism removes this Stain of Original Sin from Catholics as infants and invites the Holy Spirit to assist us in remaining free from sin.

See:

Catholic Encyclopedia on Original Sin:
newadvent.org/cathen/11312a.htm


#5

jpphilapy,

You asked.“
What exactly does it mean that Jesus was born without original sin?”

It means EXACTLY that. Jesus was born without Original Sin.


#6

To be tempted is not a sin. Christ Jesus had no blemish of Original Sin, but His human nature, as with ours got tempted. Jesus Christ is God, so it was impossible for Him to sin.


#7

To be tempted is not a sin. Christ Jesus had no blemish of Original Sin, but His human nature, as with ours got tempted. Jesus Christ is God, so it was impossible for Him to sin.


#8

Concupiscience is a “disordered desire”, and is a consequence of original sin. Being hungry and having a desire to eat is not a disordered desire, but a nomral human desire.

Temptation is not sin, but is a solicitation to sin. Satan solicited, Jesus rejected it.

From Fr. John Harding’s, Catholic Pocket Dictionary:

TEMPTATION. Solicitation to sin, whether by persuasion or offering some pleasure. It may arise from the world, the flesh, or the devil. Temptation from the world is the attractiveness of bad example and the psychological pressure to conform. Temptations from the flesh are all the urges of concupiscence, whether carnal or spiritual, where man’s fallen nature has built-in tendencies to the seven capital sins. Demonic temptations arise from instigations of the evil spirit, whose method is to encourage every form of avarice or selfishness, in order to lead one to pride, and through pride to all other sins.


#9

Concupiscience is a “disordered desire”, and is a consequence of original sin. Being hungry and having a desire to eat is not a disordered desire, but a nomral human desire.

Temptation is not sin, but is a solicitation to sin. Satan solicited, Jesus rejected it.

From Fr. John Hardings, Catholic Pocket Dictionary:

TEMPTATION. Solicitation to sin, whether by persuasion or offering some pleasure. It may arise from the world, the flesh, or the devil. Temptation from the world is the attractiveness of bad example and the psychological pressure to conform. Temptations from the flesh are all the urges of concupiscence, whether carnal or spiritual, where man’s fallen nature has built-in tendencies to the seven capital sins. Demonic temptations arise from instigations of the evil spirit, whose method is to encourage every form of avarice or selfishness, in order to lead one to pride, and through pride to all other sins.


#10

Concupiscience is a “disordered desire”, and is a consequence of original sin. Being hungry and having a desire to eat is not a disordered desire, but a nomral human desire.

Temptation is not sin, but is a solicitation to sin. Satan solicited, Jesus rejected it.

From Fr. John Harding’s, Catholic Pocket Dictionary:

TEMPTATION. Solicitation to sin, whether by persuasion or offering some pleasure. It may arise from the world, the flesh, or the devil. Temptation from the world is the attractiveness of bad example and the psychological pressure to conform. Temptations from the flesh are all the urges of concupiscence, whether carnal or spiritual, where man’s fallen nature has built-in tendencies to the seven capital sins. Demonic temptations arise from instigations of the evil spirit, whose method is to encourage every form of avarice or selfishness, in order to lead one to pride, and through pride to all other sins.


#11

Howdy folks,

Jimmy I await your answer and thanks for taking the time to answer.

Some of you other folks answered with circular logic.

I want to know what you understand to be original sin. And what is it exactly that Jesus had. I am not intimating that he was sinful because he had sinful flesh, I just want to know what the catholic church teaches regarding his humanity in this respect.

I do think that I am getting somewhat of a gist but I am not clear yet.

Jeff


#12

To be tempted is not a sin. Christ Jesus had no blemish of Original Sin, but His human nature, as with ours got tempted. Jesus Christ is God, so it was impossible for Him to sin.


#13

[quote=jphilapy]Howdy folks,

Jimmy I await your answer and thanks for taking the time to answer.

Some of you other folks answered with circular logic.

I want to know what you understand to be original sin.
[/quote]

Sanctifying Grace is a supernatural gift of God to intellectual creatures for their eternal salvation. The lack of it from conception is called Original Sin.

See:

Catholic Encyclopedia- Sanctifying Grace

Original Sin

And what is it exactly that Jesus had.

Well we all agree Jesus did not have Original Sin.

Jesus was born a man. As a result of the seperation from God in the Garden of Eden, where Adam and Eve refused the gift of GRACE from God through their disobedience, mankind assumed other characteristics which Jesus also inherited as a man.

Death and Suffering
Concupiscence

As an aside here, Jesus came to conquer DEATH and offer us an opportunity to remove Original Sin through Baptism. I believe the suffering and concupiscence remain as an aspect of the original disobedience, as a constant reminder to us to choose to remain humble and obedient to God through EVERY trouble.

I am not intimating that he was sinful because he had sinful flesh,

You are correct, he didn’t have sinfull flesh but as a man he had concupiscence, (the ability to be tempted).

I just want to know what the catholic church teaches regarding his humanity in this respect.

You may wish to visit the site:

NewAdvent.org

For full commentary on these questions. There is a whole wealth of information there, and references to Church documents and literature from Church Fathers.

I do think that I am getting somewhat of a gist but I am not clear yet.

Jeff

Good luck on your studies.


#14

[quote=Fox]To be tempted is not a sin. Christ Jesus had no blemish of Original Sin, but His human nature, as with ours got tempted. Jesus Christ is God, so it was impossible for Him to sin.
[/quote]

I am curious what you mean when you say “impossible for Him to sin.” It has always been my understanding, that our salvation hinged on him CHOOSING to follow the Will of God.

Inherent in the word “choose” is that there are at least TWO possible options. In this case, to ACCEPT or DENY the Will of God.

It was equally possible for Jesus to be tempted by Satan to choose to escape His salvific destiny as it was for him to accept His Father’s Will.

You may have meant improbable rather than impossible.

Sometimes these philisophic ideas rely very heavily on the meanings of the words we use. Misunderstandings on forums often stem from different definitions, context and intent.

I do not intend to mince words, only clarify.


#15

Hi Shiann,

Thanks for the replies. I will read over all the details you sent but for the moment I am getting the general feel.

Regarding bondage, does the catholic church subscribe to the idea that humans become bound to sin but don’t start out bound?

Thanks,
Jeff


#16

I think that the Protestant view of the “fall” is much more destructive of human nature than the Catholic view.

My understanding is that the Protestant view of the fallen nature is an intrinsically CHANGED human nature in the literal sense. Catholicism, on the other hand, teaches that the human nature remained the same, but the preternatural gifts and supernatural gifts were removed. In otherwords, Adam’s human nature was just like all of humanity, except that his nature was supercharged with supernatural and preternatural catalysts (gifts) that intrinsically elevated his human nature. After the fall, the catalyst was removed. In this sense, human nature was intrinsically changed (due to the lack of divine catalysts). The nature is said to be damaged, but strictly speaking, it is the same nature as it was before, but without the supernatural catalyst (grace), it is fallen nature (as opposed to a once elevated nature), it is a concupiscient nature, also called a sinful nature. Catholicism teaches that this sinful nature can still desire the good, but it is not likely without the gift of grace.

This is in stark contrast to the Lutheran and Calvinist view of “total depravity.” Catholics would say depraved, yes, but not totally depraved. God creates every human nature. God only creates good. Without the help of supernatural gifts, our (good) natural gifts are at a disadvantage in dealing with the temptations of Satan. In otherwords, without grace our disordered selfishness is bound to result in personal sin.

The notion of original sin is simply the assertion that natural generation does not produce Original Justice (sanctification). One must be born again.

As for the incarnate Jesus, he was divine before and during his incarnation. His human nature was hypostatically in perfect union with the Divine nature. He was in “original justice” which excludes the possibility of “original sin.”


#17

[quote=jphilapy]Hi Shiann,

Thanks for the replies. I will read over all the details you sent but for the moment I am getting the general feel.

Regarding bondage, does the catholic church subscribe to the idea that humans become bound to sin but don’t start out bound?

Thanks,
Jeff
[/quote]

I think some of the intricacies of this question might be made clear through studying what the Church considers Sin, Original Sin, Grace and Sanctifying Grace.

But here’s a quick Reader’s Digest Condensed version of my answer.

We can agree that A & E (Adam and Eve) were originally perfect beings in perfect unity with God. Then A&E decided to do something that required that they TURN AWAY from God. (I want to make sure I’m keeping the idea of free will in the forefront.)

This event was so profound that it ripped mankind from the Father irrepairably. The consequences of the seperation from God was the fact that mankind could not bask in the Glory of Him (Sanctifying Grace). For our removal from Eden, we toil the earth, have childbirth pains, and experience a mortal death.

Now concupiscence also comes to us via our first parents. Concupiscence being the ability for us to experience temptation. But just because we can experience it, doesn’t mean that we will submit! So, I guess you could say EVERYONE is born with the ability to be tempted (including Mary and Jesus). It is just that the closer that we get to living a life completely reflective of God’s Will for us, and the more Graces we allow God to bestow on us, the easier it is to resist that temptation.

We are all born lacking the knowledge of God’s Will- or that perfect relationship with God. But Jesus and Mary (that we know of) were gifted with the perfect relationship with God the moment of their conception. They both had free will in that they could still make the choice to go against God (just as A&E).

For us, Baptism removes the barriers between us and that perfect relationship God wants to have with us. But we have to ask for it. The more we live our live reflective of God’s Will, the less probable it is for us to revert to sinful actions. Is it still possible? Certainly. Without the possibility- there is no free will.

So, I guess you could say that man IS bound until that first step he takes to turn toward God. Every subsequent step he takes toward God loosens the bindings. The journey toward God is easy for some, and more difficult for others.


#18

[quote=itsjustdave1988]I think that the Protestant view of the “fall” is much more destructive of human nature than the Catholic view.

My understanding is that the Protestant view of the fallen nature is an intrinsically CHANGED human nature in the literal sense. Catholicism, on the other hand, teaches that the human nature remained the same, but the preternatural gifts and supernatural gifts were removed. In otherwords, Adam’s human nature was just like all of humanity, except that his nature was supercharged with supernatural and preternatural catalysts (gifts) that intrinsically elevated his human nature. After the fall, the catalyst was removed. In this sense, human nature was intrinsically changed (due to the lack of divine catalysts). The nature is said to be damaged, but strictly speaking, it is the same nature as it was before, but without the supernatural catalyst (grace), it is fallen nature (as opposed to a once elevated nature), it is a concupiscient nature, also called a sinful nature. Catholicism teaches that this sinful nature can still desire the good, but it is not likely without the gift of grace.

This is in stark contrast to the Lutheran and Calvinist view of “total depravity.” Catholics would say depraved, yes, but not totally depraved. God creates every human nature. God only creates good. Without the help of supernatural gifts, our (good) natural gifts are at a disadvantage in dealing with the temptations of Satan. In otherwords, without grace our disordered selfishness is bound to result in personal sin.

The notion of original sin is simply the assertion that natural generation does not produce Original Justice (sanctification). One must be born again.

As for the incarnate Jesus, he was divine before and during his incarnation. His human nature was hypostatically in perfect union with the Divine nature. He was in “original justice” which excludes the possibility of “original sin.”
[/quote]

YOU ROCK!


#19

Hi Shiann,

Thanks for the replies. I will read over all the details you sent but for the moment I am getting the general feel.

Regarding bondage, does the catholic church subscribe to the idea that humans become bound to sin but don’t start out bound?

Thanks,
Jeff


#20

Back to my reply, I made a mistake that I just realized. I said Mary was sanctified when Jesus was conceived, according to the CCC she was conceived herself without Original Sin in anticiption of being the Mother of Jesus.


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