I hope to try to get my point across as clearly as possible. However, as we are made in God’s image, yet as quoted below, for example, ‘God gave them up to their reprobate mind’ - where does this mind come from? God made us, so our minds must be within God’s creative environment - I just get confused as elsewhere in the bible by acting on your ‘human nature’ seems to be ‘evil’, yet did God not make us humans? I fully realise we must carry out God’s will and through his graces change our nature, but where does the ‘human nature’ come from if not from God? Is it the devil? Confused.
Romans 1:28 And even as they did not think fit to have God in their knowledge, God gave them up to a reprobate mind, to do the things not right, 29 having been filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, iniquity, covetousness, malice, being full of envy, murder, quarrels, deceit, evil habits, becoming whisperers, 30 slanderers, God-haters, insolent, proud, braggarts, devisers of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 without discernment, covenant breakers, without natural affection, unforgiving, unmerciful, 32 who knowing the righteous order of God, that those practicing such things are worthy of death, not only do them, but also approve those practicing them.
Our human nature comes from God alone. And originally it was filled with God's grace.
[INDENT]375. The Church, interpreting the symbolism of biblical language in an authentic way, in the light of the New Testament and Tradition, teaches that our first parents, Adam and Eve, were constituted in an original “state of holiness and justice”. This grace of original holiness was "to share in…divine life[/INDENT]
This grace gave man mastery over himself:
[INDENT]377. The “mastery” over the world that God offered man from the beginning was realized above all within man himself: mastery of self. The first man was unimpaired and ordered in his whole being because he was free from the triple concupiscence that subjugates him to the pleasures of the senses, covetousness for earthly goods, and self-assertion, contrary to the dictates of reason.
In other words, when God first created man, he was not a slave to the pleasure of the senses, he had no perverse desire for earthly goods and he had no perverse desire for self-assertion, that is he didn’t trust in himself but he trusted in God.
But when Adam sinned, he lost this grace of original holiness, the life of God in our souls. So man now has a “fallen” nature. The Church teaches in the Catechism:
400. The harmony in which they had found themselves, thanks to original justice, is now destroyed: the control of the soul’s spiritual faculties over the body is shattered; the union of man and woman becomes subject to tensions, their relations henceforth marked by lust and domination.[/INDENT]
The Church continues:
[INDENT]What Revelation makes known to us is confirmed by our own experience. For when man looks into his own heart he finds that he is drawn towards what is wrong and sunk in many evils which cannot come from his good creator. Often refusing to acknowledge God as his source, man has also upset the relationship which should link him to his last end, and at the same time he has broken the right order that should reign within himself as well as between himself and other men and all creatures.[/INDENT]
[INDENT]407. The doctrine of original sin, closely connected with that of redemption by Christ, provides lucid discernment of man’s situation and activity in the world. By our first parents’ sin, the devil has acquired a certain domination over man, even though man remains free. Original sin entails “captivity under the power of him who thenceforth had the power of death, that is, the devil”. Ignorance of the fact that man has a wounded nature inclined to evil gives rise to serious errors in the areas of education, politics, social action and morals[/INDENT].
So, even though God created man in the state of original holiness, because of Adam’s sin man no longer had this grace. Man now has fallen human nature in which he is now a servant of sin and under the power of the devil. Man is a slave to sin, almost without free will because of this lack of grace.
Then the Catechism teaches:
[INDENT]410. After his fall, man was not abandoned by God. On the contrary, God calls him and in a mysterious way heralds the coming victory over evil and his restoration from his fall. This passage in Genesis is called the Protoevangelium (“first gospel”): the first announcement of the Messiah and Redeemer, of a battle between the serpent and the Woman, and of the final victory of a descendant of hers.[/INDENT]
So God did not abandon man, but out of love for man sent Jesus into the world.
[INDENT]457. The Word became flesh for us in order to save us by reconciling us with God, who “loved us and sent his Son to be the expiation for our sins”: “the Father has sent his Son as the Saviour of the world”, and “he was revealed to take away sins”:[/INDENT]
Notice that God did NOT come into the world to open the gates of heaven. God did NOT come into the world to reconcile us with God. God came into the world to “save us”. Save means to be freed from evil. In this case, God came into the world to save us from our sins, that is to free us from our slavery of sin. God did not come into the world to reconcile us with God, but to “save us”, BY reconciling us with God.
Reconciling us with God was the means to set us free from the slavery of sin. Reconciling us with God, which gives us the right to heaven, was NOT the primary purpose God became man, it was the MEANS by which he freed us from the slavery of sin.
The reason God wanted to save us was because we were slaves to the misery of sin.
[INDENT]457. The Word became flesh for us in order to save us by reconciling us with God, who “loved us and sent his Son to be the expiation for our sins”: “the Father has sent his Son as the Saviour of the world”, and “he was revealed to take away sins”: 607
Sick, our nature demanded to be healed; fallen, to be raised up; dead, to rise again. We had lost the possession of the good; it was necessary for it to be given back to us. Closed in the darkness, it was necessary to bring us the light; captives, we awaited a Saviour; prisoners, help; slaves, a liberator. Are these things minor or insignificant? Did they not move God to descend to human nature and visit it, since humanity was in so miserable and unhappy a state?[71[/INDENT]]
So, God created us with a good human nature, but man lost the good by sin. Jesus came to restore that loss of grace, and thus set us free from our slavery to sin.
Salvation therefore is liberation from the slavery of sin ** in order to be restored to the state in which we were created, and even to go beyond that state, so we can love God and our neighbor the way we should, and thus have happiness.
Why then did Adam sin in the first place if he wasn’t created with an evil inclination in addition to a good inclination? How could Satan have tempted Adam and Eve to rebel against G-d if there was no sinful tendency in them before they rebelled?
Is it not because God gave us free will? Afterall, is it not better to work for something, than it is to simply be given something? Is it not better to give, than to receive? Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish and you feed him for life.
So, I go along my merry way in this life, having things done to me that should not have been done. I react and do things that I should not do. I am never responsible for the hurt done to me, but I am responsible for what I’ve done in return. And one day, if I’m blessed, my eyes are opened and I begin to understand. Amazing Grace. I once was lost, but now am found. Was blind but now I see. I see that I have been forgiven, and I see that I must forgive in return. The Holy Spirit fills me with faith, hope and love. And the greatest is love.
Exactly. I agree it is based on free will, and that is a precious gift from G-d. But again, if the possibility of sin within Man’s nature was not there to begin with, what is the free will given to Man all about? IOW, doesn’t Man’s free will draw on his decision BASED ON HIS NATURE to love and obey G-d and be kind to others, AND his nature to do the opposite (with a little coaxing from Satan)?
Many thanks dccharles. I’ll need to read more thoroughly what you have posted, however on a quick look through, it seems to explain precisely what I was trying to discern.
However, Metzlerboy does make a good point that man’s current free will enables him to choose to live by either God’s will or through the Devil - and by the looks of it, as Adam and Eve still sinned even though they were made pure - how did they, it would seem that they were in the same boat as the rest of us, so to speak?
Anyone have any views on whether or not human nature might be the same as God’s? Somewhere in the scripture he states, “I, thy God am a jealous God.” This is confusing because is He saying there -is- more than one God or is it some sort of translation miscommunication and he’s really only saying put nothing before him. Getting back to the original post-most would believe jealousy to be a negative emotion-how is God capable of that?
It’s a funny thing, the whole nature of God/man. Here’s an interesting one for you - initially, man is naked. When he eats the apple, he decides for himself that he is embarrassed to be seen naked (the meanings there are manifold, but lets ignore that for now and see) - however, later on in the Bible, it is God that is declaring that humanity should be covered, and not display themselves immodestly. Aside from being a Jungian feast, it indicates partly that our minds, and even our own morality are not God’s. Even though God rejects humanity for actualising the powerto choose right and wrong themselves, nonetheless he guides humanity along their own path, which I assume can hten be guided back to a true realisation of morality, i.e. back to God. There are major indfications of the difficulties in doing this, including particularly regarding the establishment of ritual commandments when the more fundamental commandments prove too, shall we say, challenging, and in many parts of the new testament where Jesus indicates we should understand moral actions further as time goes on. If I’ve put that all in the right order, not particularly sure…:rolleyes:
Just to go back to Jung, and his take on this progressivism, he ties it in with treating humanity as a growing being, so in the earlier stages particularly, humanity needs a stern hand, so Gods jealousy, for example, is the kind of emotion humanity can understand (at the time)