The effects of sin today


Hi everyone! :wave:

I know that the sin of Adam and Eve threw everything off and that earthquakes, floods and other natural disasters are a result, but here’s my question.

Are the sins that we commit, you and me personally, a direct cause of natural disasters today?

I’m interested in Catholic teaching on this. Thanks!

In Christ,
Nancy :slight_smile:


I would say yes, because of were natural disasters happen, like the fires in California hit porn shops and dealers, some of these hurricanes hitting some occult areas in the south, tornados this, lightning that.

Michael Brown at specializes in putting together the location that these disasters strike with what evil is going on there.

Yes, God does use natural disasters to cleanse out some evil places in this world due to high amounts of personal sin.


Although the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) says that one of the effects of Original Sin was that Man’s harmony with creation was broken and “visible creation has become alien and hostile to man” (CCC 400), I think you have taken the symbolic language of first few chapters of Genesis a little too literally. If you study geology, you will see that earthquakes, floods and other natural disasters occurred millions, if not billions, of years before the appearance of the first man and woman.

The Catechism of the Catholic Church says:
310. But why did God not create a world so perfect that no evil could exist in it? With infinite power God could always create something better. But with infinite wisdom and goodness God freely willed to create a world “in a state of journeying” towards its ultimate perfection. In God’s plan this process of becoming involves the appearance of certain beings and the disappearance of others, the existence of the more perfect alongside the less perfect, both constructive and destructive forces of nature. With physical good there exists also physical evil as long as creation has not reached perfection.


[quote=Todd Easton] I think you have taken the symbolic language of first few chapters of Genesis a little too literally.

Hi Todd! :wave:

I wasn’t commenting on any particular scriptures, it was just a thought I had and thought I’d ask people to give their 2 cents on it.

In Christ,
Nancy :slight_smile:


I can’t give you the Catholic teaching on this, but I would say no, most of the time – like right now I’d say no. Our activities may have some miniscule impact on the weather, but because of their physical nature and not their goodness or evil.

I don’t dare say God can’t or wouldn’t use such phenomena, but neither do I believe He does, at least on any regular basis.

Occasionally I have strange “mystical” experiences when I feel connected to all of creation, at which time I’ve become convinced that a storm, bird, etc is communicating with me, but I haven’t figured out whether those are spiritual or psychological events.



I don’t think I’ve heard anything to the effect that they are.

In His wonderful omniscience and providence, our Father in Heaven has ordained many things to occur in the natural world, many in which we are challenged to be faithful to our relationship with Him.

There were deserts in Biblical times, and these were the backdrops of the events of the Bible. There were famines and probably the accompanying droughts. And, people were well-disciplined to cry out to God for mercy and deliverance.

With all we know about the natural world and the universe, the revealed truths come to us even more forcefully to strengthen our covenant relationship with our Father.


I would say no. It interfers with the free will issue if God were to doll out that kind of punishment surely?


I think an attractive interpretation of the causality between sin and disasters is that the separation from God that sin causes dramatically alters human perceptions of earthquakes, famines, etc.-- and that this is what actually makes them disasters! Just think-- before the Fall if someone’s body died, his communion with God would have been unbroken, so much so that (if we pay attention to Genesis) he wouldn’t even experience it as “death” in the sense that we do. It was sin, and its resulting separation from our Father, that made death and suffering into fearful things. Before that, the love of God permeated everything, and although calamitous things happened, the people of the time “let nothing disturb them; nothing trouble them… God alone suffices.”


Hello Nancy:tiphat:

As a Reformed guy, I think I can safely say that I understand Original sin to effect us in the following 2 basic ways, at least in the realm of “effects” you are addressing:

  1. Natural occurrences. These would include weeds, thorns and briars, inopportune rain, tidal waves, earthquakes. Ok, maybe the latter 2 occured before the creation of man like the previous post suggested. Whatever, in Scripture, many times weeds and briars are linked to covenant curses. So, does God use these to punish the wicked? Well, perhaps to some degree, but we are all injured or hindered by such destructive occurences (and briars are pesky to Christians too). Like Ecclesiastes says “God causes the rain to fall on the just and the unjust.” Well, rain is good, but you get the jist of what I’m saying. Also, maybe we’re not quite as righteous as we like to sometimes think we are!
    Also, Christians should know that just as we overcome concupiscence by diligent practice of Christian virtues, we overcome “covenant curses” by diligent work. There are Proverbs that speak of the lazy or wicked having their houses overrun by thorns and weeds, but the houses of the diligent and righteous are, well, neat.

Ok, that’s just one, but that’s enough I think for now. The other was probably off topic.


I guess I wasn’t thinking of natural disasters as punishment for sin necessarily. I was just mulling over the effect that sin may or may not have on the natural order of things.

In Christ,
Nancy :slight_smile:


[quote=Catholic4aReasn]I guess I wasn’t thinking of natural disasters as punishment for sin necessarily. I was just mulling over the effect that sin may or may not have on the natural order of things.

In Christ,
Nancy :slight_smile:

The first time I wondered anything about this was when I was going through Romans 8.

Romans 8:19-22

Maybe some would say that the “creation” is people, and not the rest of “creation” ie. dirt, trees, clouds, bees and honey.

But also see Genesis 3:17-19 and Isaiah 24:1-7

Yeah, I’d say that the Catholic “Sacramental Priniciple” applies here. That nature is basically good, but grace builds on nature and is used by God to teach us about His presence and grace. Just as we are fallen, the rest of the creation is affected by our sin, not so that it’s “bad” per se, but it will experience the “redemption” too in it’s own right. We won’t be around to subject it to futility or pollute it. A new heaven and a new earth. I meant to tie the Sacramental Principle in, but I lost my train of though. You’re Catholic, you can do it better than me anyways, now that the wheels are turning in that direction.

There’s probably an encyclical or 2 that addresses this.


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