Original sin in Orthodox view

Do orthodox christians believe in Original sin? If no, why?

I’ve struggled with the concept of original sin myself.
I believe that the EO pov is that we (humanity) inherit a fallen nature, through Adam’s (original) sin, although we do not inherit the (original) sin itself, only the capacity to sin.

I may be simplifying a bit, but this pov actually makes a ton of sense to me, as the way I see it, inheriting original sin opens a whole other can of worms.

There are others within the forms who perhaps could give a much better answer from the Eastern Orthodox pov @PilgrimMichelangelo @George720 @dochawk


In discussion with an Eastern Orthodox before I discovered something significant other than calling the state we are conceived in ancestral sin or original sin. Per the local Council of Orange II (canon 2), the death from the sin of Adam and Eve, which in inherited, is both the death of the body and the death of the soul, therefore baptism is needed for regeneration. Now, the Council of Orange II was not something that the Eastern Orthodox participated in. Still, we read from St. John Chrysostom Baptismal Instruction 3:6.

“You have seen how numerous are the gifts of baptism. Although many men think that the only gift it confers is the remission of sins, we have counted its honors to the number of ten. It is on this account that we baptize even infants, although they are sinless, that they may be given the further gifts of sanctification, justice, filial adoption, and inheritance, that they may be brothers and members of Christ, and become dwelling places of the Spirit.”

Mentioned in 3:6:
1 remission of sins
2 sanctification
3 justice
4 filial adoption
5 inheritance
6 brothers of Christ
7 members of Christ
8 dwelling places for the Holy Spirit

“You are called faithful both because you believe in God and have as a trust from him justificaton, sanctity, purity of soul, filial adoption, and the kingdom of heaven.”

Two more mentioned in 12:6:
9 purity of soul
10 kingdom of heaven


It seems that even St. John Chrysostom, agrees that infants are sinless (no inheritance of sin), and I wholeheartedly agree that baptism is of great benefit (even for infants), my big issue with the concept of original sin is that it seems to condemn newborn/unborn babies who never had the chance to be baptized in the first place.

But the above quote really doesn’t seem to conflict with, if anything it gives credence to, the idea of not in actuality inheriting (original) sin, as St. John Chrysostom says himself “we baptize even infants, although they are sinless”.

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The Catechism states that the Latin theology of original sin is the loss of original holiness and justice. The notion that we baptize infants, despite no personal sin, for their sanctification, filial adoption, and the restoration of justice is in accord with Latin theology


I have seen Orthodox theologians equate ancestral sin only with mortality, and the needs that come from it.

The Catholic Church also says infants are sinless (no personal sins).

But the Catholic Church does not accept that unbaptized children go to heaven.

Indeed, and this is exactly what I have struggled with most.

I myself have a child that passed due to miscarriage (we were pretty far along), and I keep looking at this subject and finding myself in agreeance with the EO pov.

Here is a thread I started on exactly this topic:


The position is shown in the Catechism

1261 As regards children who have died without Baptism , the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus’ tenderness toward children which caused him to say: "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,"64 allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the Church’s call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism.

64 Mk 10 14; cf. 1 Tim 2:4.

And it just show a hope to be saved.


Not exactly correct. It doesn’t believe it can declare that as doctrine.

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Actually It is a de fide teaching of the Church that those who die in mortal sin or in original sin alone both go to hell but suffer unequal punishments.

The Church now says that we should hope for these children, but seeing as though it is a de fide teaching of the RCC, they cannot change this original stance, so saying that we should hope for these children is nice and all, but it doesn’t carry any real weight behind it.

In Orthodox Church, Augustine of Hippo is not saint, because of this.

It wasn’t only Augustine Of Hippo who held this view:

The souls of those who die in mortal sin or with original sin only…immediately descend into hell, yet to be punished with different punishments". —Pope Gregory X, Second Council of Lyons, 1274

“The souls of those who depart this life in actual mortal sin, or in original sin alone, go down straightaway to hell to be punished, but with unequal pains”. —Pope Eugene IV, Council of Florence, Laetentur Caeli , 6 July 1439

Under the de fide teaching of the Church a person is not saved by being “innocent” or “sinless” but by having sanctifying grace, which requires baptism, whether by water, blood, or desire.
Because baptism of blood and desire require an act of the will, infants can only be saved by baptism of water, which is why St. Thomas Aquinas urges mothers to have their children baptized as soon as possible, because for them there is “no other remedy.”

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i dont believe augustine of hippo was right either. and his beliefs on sexuality was wrong to.
there was no original sin, or the fall of man.

Are you Orthodox?

The hope the Church professes is that God forgives these children of original sin (that is, he justifies and sanctifies them) before their death in an extraordinary manner, such that they do not die in original sin only.

no i am roman catholic,i dont tell anyone this,but i believe this,

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Yes he is.

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