The Bible teaches that all people are sinful because they are descendants of the first man, Adam, who fell into sin (see Genesis 2-3). Adam and his wife Eve were created good and without sin, although they had the ability to choose sin. When they ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, which God had forbidden, their human nature was corrupted.
The hearts became corrupted
Instead of loving God and doing what He wanted, the hearts of Adam and Eve became corrupted. From that point forward, they desired to disobey God rather than obey Him. The Westminster Shorter Catechism defines sin as “any lack of conformity unto, or transgression of, the law of God.”
Sinful nature of their children
Adam and Eve passed on a sinful nature to their children and to all their descendants (namely, all people). The apostle Paul wrote that “by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners” (Romans 5:19). Because of our inherited sin from Adam, all people are “by nature, children of wrath” (Ephesians 2:3). King David testifies, “Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me” (Psalm 51:5). He did not mean that his mother bore him out of wedlock, but rather that he was a sinner before he was even born. Because of our inherited sinful nature from Adam, all people therefore have “sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
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