Re: [asa] Tough question for TEs

From: Brent Foster <>
Date: Wed Aug 22 2007 - 13:32:29 EDT

---- wrote:

By physical death do you mean of any living thing, or are you specifically asking about human death?

If you are talking about any living thing, then if sin entered the world through the fall of man, and death existed before the fall, then it seems to me that physical death of sub human creation, has nothing to do with sin.

I would say that is not the case with human death however.

Brent writes:
Yes I mean human death. By dying, Jesus took our punishment for sin. But I think this involved separation from God (Father why have you forsaken me?) rather than just the death of his physical body. By rising again he overcomes death, the punishment for our sins, and is restored to fellowship with the Father. But if physical death for humans is the punishment for sin, then his death and ressurrection failed, because we still suffer the punishment for sin.

I know that some say forgiveness of sin does not exempt us from the concequences of our behavior. A cheating husband may have to live with a wrecked family even though God forgives him. If physical death for humans is a consequence of sin, than one could maintain that we still suffer that consequence even though we are saved from the true punisment, separation from God.

The question is whether death, the death resulting from the fall, is punisment, the admistration of justice, or is an effect of sin. A cheating husband has to live with the effects of his cheating even though he may be forgiven and not receive punishment. Death has always been a common form of punishment. It's hard to imagine death being an effect of eating fruit from a tree, unless the tree was poisonous. In which case "Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil" is a funny name for the tree. Unless it's spiritual or metaphorical poison which was my position all along!

It's a consistant thread of teaching in scripture that our actions have concequence, in this life and the next. But I think there is also a consistant thread teaching that our lot in life has nothing to do with our moral standing. The whole book of Job, much of Ecclesiastes, Psalms, and some of Jesus' teachings point to the fact that bad things happen to good people, and there is nothing we can do about it. We suffer all kinds of physical afflictions, including death, that have no relation to our behavior. It seems to me that viewing human physical death as a result, either punishment or effect, of sin is inconsistant with this line of teaching.


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Received on Wed Aug 22 13:33:02 2007

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