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Discussion Forum : Scriptures and Doctrine : Is The Flesh Sinful? Is The Body A Sin?

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Joined: 2003/5/8
Posts: 4419
Charlotte, NC



V. “…by nature children of wrath” Ephesians 2:3:

A. The word nature can describe a man’s God given constitution: (Rom 1:26; 1:31; 2:14; 2:27; 2 Tim 3:3). But this is just dirt and it is created by God. Therefore it cannot be sinful in and of itself.

B. The word nature can describe a man’s self chosen character, custom, habit, or manner of life: (Jer. 13:23; Acts 26:4; 1 Cor 2:14; Eph 2:2-3; Gal 2:14-15; 2 Tim 3:10; 2 Pet 1:4). This is voluntary and has to do with the heart. Therefore moral character, or sinfulness, can belong to this type of nature.

C. The context of this particular passage is talking about a former manner of life, addressing a previous lifestyle. "Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world... among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of the flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind..." Eph. 2:2-3. The “natural man” is the same as the “carnally minded”. It is someone who lives for the gratification of their flesh. To say that a person is by nature a child of wrath is the same as saying that they are under the wrath of God because they are living for the gratification of their flesh.

D. To say that they are “children of disobedience” (Eph. 2:2, 5:6) and “by nature children of wrath” is to say the same thing.

E. That which brings the “wrath” of God is voluntary moral character, not involuntary constitutions.

F. A sinful nature is moral not physical, it is a person’s self chosen character and not his God given constitution. A man’s heart (will) can be sinful, but a man’s body can only be an occasion of temptation. Though continual choices of self-gratification, man has developed a habit of sin.

Again, you have shown no understanding of the context of Ephesians 2:3. Simply quoting in a sloppy fashion a random assortment of verses is not a sound contextual interpretation of Ephesians 2:3. Earlier, if you noticed, I went very quickly, yet carefully through the context of Ephesians 1-2:10... which you simply ignored. In Ephesians 2:3, not only is the Greek grammar pretty clear that Paul is talking about people who are children of wrath by constitution, it is contextually clear as well.

Such persons, Paul shows, live in a world submerged all the way through with sin. They not only sin, but they live in a world in which they are dominated by the prince of the power of the air, who rules over their mind and life. Such is why your petty gospel of self-salvation is nothing short of damning. For Paul makes it clear these children of wrath live in a world that is entirely lost and unable to save themselves. They have no hopes of ever turning in and of themselves from sin, for they are ruled by the devil himself, and unable to do so. Which is why we need Christ, Paul asserts, who stands far above and is more powerful than all these forces. From such a world, Christ saves men, and literally rescues them from something they are unable to rescue themselves from. He does this by showing them grace and mercy while they are yet sinners, making them alive, and causing them to sit above all these powers and influences.

This is the context of Ephesians.

I would address the other passages you cited, but, I don't have the time at the present. As it is, you clearly don't understand those either. You never engage them in the slightest bit of exegesis. You always pull a "It doesn't really mean that, because my moral government theological grid of interpretation has no room for it to mean what you say it means."

If your gospel were somehow valid, it must stand the rigorous examination of careful historical-grammatical-contextual exegesis. Verses in the Bible are not isolated play things that you can string together as if you were making a necklace. Dogma must be the fruitful labor of closely examining a text, and reading what it says, not what you want it to say. If you read it for what it truly says, it'll challenge and revolutionize your life.

Jimmy H

 2009/10/28 0:56Profile

Joined: 2009/5/1
Posts: 215



I once asked a Calvinist “Is this body a sin?” They said, “Yes, our bodies are made of sin”. I asked, “So you can put sin under a microscope and look at it?” He said, “sure”.

As an adherent to the doctrines of grace I found the above quote insulting.
You don't need a microscope. It's right there in the pigments. At worst a small cereal-box magnifying glass will do.
Please tell your Calvinist friend to test his source and info before spouting absurdity all over the net.

 2009/10/28 1:22Profile

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