(e) There is a race-sin, therefore, as well as a personal sin. The first father of the race committed race sin when he comprised the whole race in himself. Mankind, since that time has been born in the state into which he fell ? a state of depravity, guilt, and condemnation. To vindicate God?s justice in imputing to us the sin of our first father, many theories have been devised, a part of which must be regarded as only attempts to evade the problem by denying the facts set before us in the Scriptures. Among these attempted explanations of the Scripture statements, we proceed to examine the six theories, which seem most worthy of attention.

The first three of the theories which we discuss may be said to be evasions of the problem of original sin all, in one form or another, deny that God imputes to all men Adam?s sin, in such a sense that all are guilty for it. These theories are the Pelagian, the Arminian, and the New School. The last three of the theories which we are about to treat, namely, the Federal theory, the theory of Mediate Imputation and the theory of Adam?s Natural Headship, are all Old School theories, and have for their common characteristic that they assert the guilt of inborn depravity. All three, moreover, hold that we are in some way responsible for Adam?s sin, though they differ as to the precise way in which we are related to Adam. We must grant that no one, even of these latter theories, is wholly satisfactory. We hope, however, to show that the last of them ? the Augustinian theory, the theory of Adam?s natural headship, the theory that Adam and his descendants are naturally and organically one ? explains the largest number of facts, is least open to objection, and is most accordant with Scripture.

Was this article helpful?

0 0

Post a comment