Original Sin

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Ichthus

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I haven’t been here in a while, so excuse me if this is the wrong forum

A few months ago, on another forum, some confusion abounded about an e-letter fram Karl Keating. I have been informed that the e-letter forum is for current, not old, letters. Myt friend asked me then to post this for him

Dear Karl,
I was wondering if you could clarify something you wrote in your Feb. 10th eletter concerning Original Sin. In it you said:
Adam and Eve committed the original sin–called “original” because it occurred at the origin of the human race. They incurred guilt for that sin. Their offspring–including us–did not. What we have been saddled with is not the guilt of their sin but the consequences of their sin. They forfeited the preternatural gifts God had given them, and that forfeiture has extended through all the generations. But the guilt of that first sin was theirs alone.
Now, I believe that the guilt of Adam has been passed down to all of Humanity (i.e. it is hereditary). That is the essence of Original Sin, since Adam stood as a real, not figurative, representative of the human race. Another way to look at it is the fact that the Church has always taught that those who die in Original Sin alone, without committing any personal sins, are excluded from Heaven. This punishment could not be applied to a person without there being some kind of guilt. Any further thoughts on the matter would be appreciated.
In JMJ,
Matt

I would like to add that I thought Keating was referring to the actual sin of Original Sin, but nonetheless there is confusion about what he said.

Instead of idle speculation on our parts, we thought it would be best to ask Keating himself

God Bless
 
:twocents: “This punishment could not be applied to a person without there being some kind of guilt.” Not punishment,. consciences. A mother on drugs will pass on the addiction to her newborn baby. . The child is guilty of nothing but the consciences of the mothers sin are passed on. So too with Original sin. "What we have been saddled with is not the guilt of their sin but the consequences of their sin. ".
 
Shellac has an excellent observation.
In regards to exclusion from heaven I thought the Church taught that if we had the intent to baptize (such as in the case of an infant) then that person was generally thought to have been saved.
 
Shellac said:
:twocents: “This punishment could not be applied to a person without there being some kind of guilt.” Not punishment,. consciences. A mother on drugs will pass on the addiction to her newborn baby. . The child is guilty of nothing but the consciences of the mothers sin are passed on. So too with Original sin. "What we have been saddled with is not the guilt of their sin but the consequences of their sin. ".

Except that it is Church doctrine that we inherit the guilt of Adam’s sin. We did not simply lose the preternatural gifts with which Adam and Eve were endowed, we also inherited Adam’s guilt.
 
Gregory Eric:
In regards to exclusion from heaven I thought the Church taught that if we had the intent to baptize (such as in the case of an infant) then that person was generally thought to have been saved.
Pure speculation.
 
Gregory Eric:
Shellac has an excellent observation.
In regards to exclusion from heaven I thought the Church taught that if we had the intent to baptize (such as in the case of an infant) then that person was generally thought to have been saved.
No, the Church does not teach this.

This issue is controverted. There are two “substitutions” for sacramental baptism, baptismus flaminis et baptismus sanginis

The first is often translated, for lack of a better word, baptism of desire. The other is baptism of blood

Now a brief description of both

baptism of desire- Baptism of desire in the explicit or implicit desire (in voto, relly. votum does nto mean desire but rather vow, so it is something more than a vague desire) for sacramental baptism associate with perfect contrition. It remits Original Sin, bestows Sanctifying grace, etc. It remits venial sin and temporal punishment only according to the intensity of one’s dispositions. It’s efficacy on all accounts isn’t infallible (like the sacrament itself) but works like a sacramental

Infants are not able, of themselves, to have baptism of desire

baptism of blood- Martyrdom. Unlike baptism of desire, this one is quasi ex opere operato (like the sacraments) and it does remit venial and temporal punishments

Now back to the issue of infants. What you are associating with the Church’s teaching is actually the teaching of the Thomist Cajetan. It is called vicarious baptism of desire. The vow, rather than desire, of parents to baptise the babe suffices or else the faith of the Church. It is perfectly fine as an opinion, but that is all it is. It cannot be shown from Revelation.

Other theories are baptism of blood for infants, such as with the Holy Innocents. Some extend this to abortyion victims. Another theory is that God grants the use of reason in the last moments and in this way a babe, by his grace, can truly desire the sacrament and have baptism of desire. These are possible, but cannot be proved. Following St. Thomas, the teaching regarding those who die only with the guilt of Original Sin (unbaptised children) are free from all pain of sense and though they are in positive Hell (that is with the pain of the damned), such a condition, he argues, is compatible with natural bliss
 
Shellac said:
:twocents: “This punishment could not be applied to a person without there being some kind of guilt.” Not punishment,. consciences. A mother on drugs will pass on the addiction to her newborn baby. . The child is guilty of nothing but the consciences of the mothers sin are passed on. So too with Original sin. "What we have been saddled with is not the guilt of their sin but the consequences of their sin. ".

I don’t now how you can call the poena damnus a consequence (that is the pain of damned). It is the dogma of the Church that those who die with Original sin only descend immediately into hell*. St. Thomas taught that such a state was without the pain of sense, and that the pain of the damned was compatible with natural bliss

*cf. the Union Councils of Lyons and Florence
 
Do infants not batized normally go to heaven? No one really knows, and so the church trusts to God’s mercy and justice.

That’s one of the coolest things about the Catholic Church; it’s not afraid to say “we don’t know” and “it’s a mystery we can’t fully understand.” If the truth is supernatural, you would think there would be things we as humans in our human existence can never get our arms all the way around.

Doesn’t it seem like most religions through the ages have claimed to have all the answers?
 
The Catechism addresses this topic explicitly. We DO NOT incur personal guilt in original sin.
404 How did the sin of Adam become the sin of all his descendants? The whole human race is in Adam “as one body of one man”.293 By this “unity of the human race” all men are implicated in Adam’s sin, as all are implicated in Christ’s justice. Still, the transmission of original sin is a mystery that we cannot fully understand. But we do know by Revelation that Adam had received original holiness and justice not for himself alone, but for all human nature. By yielding to the tempter, Adam and Eve committed a personal sin, but this sin affected the human nature that they would then transmit in a fallen state.294 It is a sin which will be transmitted by propagation to all mankind, that is, by the transmission of a human nature deprived of original holiness and justice. And that is why original sin is called “sin” only in an analogical sense: it is a sin “contracted” and not “committed” - a state and not an act.
405 Although it is proper to each individual,295 original sin does not have the character of a personal fault in any of Adam’s descendants. It is a deprivation of original holiness and justice, but human nature has not been totally corrupted: it is wounded in the natural powers proper to it, subject to ignorance, suffering and the dominion of death, and inclined to sin - an inclination to evil that is called concupiscence". Baptism, by imparting the life of Christ’s grace, erases original sin and turns a man back towards God, but the consequences for nature, weakened and inclined to evil, persist in man and summon him to spiritual battle.
 
Adam:
You’re misreading that passage to think that it doesn’t carry individual guilt. It actually says that it doesn’t carry individual guilt in the sense of commission or personal fault. In that sense, the guilt is only analogous, but it is real. Note also that Aquinas directly tied the guilt of original sin to the passage in Ephesians that described as “sinners by nature,” and it is proper to each individual. So we have to be awfully careful about incorrectly concluding that original sin is merely consequence of Adam’s sin and not also guilt of Adam’s sin. However, Mr. Keating’s message seemed to be speaking of guilt in the sense of commission or personal fault.
 
JPrejean, I don’t understand. can you expand on your clarification? I said so little, but I don’t see how what I said was incorrect. Really, I was just trying to let the catechism speak, and I thought it addressed Ichthus’ concerns rather directly. My statement “we DO NOT incur personal guilt in original sin” reads quite the same as the catechism’s statement “original sin does not have the character of a personal fault in any of Adam’s descendants” to me. I definitely understand that we incur very real consequeces and an impaired nature in our implication in original sin, and didn’t want to imply otherwise which is why I quoted the broader context of the catechism’s statement, while putting in bold that which I thought was pertinent to this thread. Did I get it wrong?
 
Pope Pius IX, Quanto conficiamur moerore, August 10, 1863:
“God… in His supreme goodness and clemency, by no means allows anyone to be punished with eternal punishments who does not have the guilt of voluntary fault.”
God bless,

Dave
 
AdamD,

I think that what is being asserted is that there is …
  1. guilt of non-voluntary fault (original sin)
  2. guilt of voluntary fault (personal sin)
I don’t think the Catechism is unambiguous in refuting the notion that a guilt of non-voluntary fault may exists.

God bless,

Dave
 
We do not know if there is any sort of guilt associated with OS - we do know that if there are is, it is not personal guilt… it would have to go by another name i.e. a stain.

We know that OS was a real and proper sin we inhereted from Adam.
We know that it is not our actual sin, thus we do not have personal guilt for it.
We know that baptism is nessecary to wash the stain away.
 
I don’t think the Catechism is unambiguous in refuting the notion that a guilt of non-voluntary fault may exists.
Dave, could you explain how so? I don’t see room in the catechism’s statement for “guilt of non-voluntary fault” as you put it. It may be I have on some serious blinders regarding this issue … I will admit I find the idea not consonant with my understanding of God’s justice. please teach me.
 
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itsjustdave1988:
Pope Pius IX, Quanto conficiamur moerore, August 10, 1863:
supliciis (the word you have translated here “punishments”) means “torments.” Bl. Pius IX is referring to the poena sensus rather than the poena damni, the exclusion of the Unregenerate from the Beatific Vision. Two Oecumenical Councils taught that those guilty of Original Sin only would descend immediately into hell. What more do you need?

It is de fide that we inherit the guilt of Adam’s sin:

The Council of Trent (ex cathedra): “If any one denies, that, by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, which is conferred in baptism, the guilt of original sin is remitted; or even asserts that the whole of that which has the true and proper nature of sin is not taken away; but says that it is only rased, or not imputed; let him be anathema.” (Session Five, On Original Sin)

The Catechism of the Council of Trent: “Wherefore, the pastor should not omit to remind the faithful that the guilt and punishment of original sin were not confined to Adam, but justly descended from him, as from their source and cause, to all posterity. The human race, having fallen from its elevated dignity, no power of men or Angels could raise it from its fallen condition and replace it in its primitive state. To remedy the evil and repair the loss it became necessary that the Son of God, whose power is infinite, clothed in the weakness of our flesh, should remove the infinite weight of sin and reconcile us to God in His blood.” (1, 2, 2)
 
dcs,

I do believe we are in agreement. 🙂

Also from the Baltimore Catechism no. 4:
Q. Why is this sin called original?
A. This sin is called original because it comes down to us from our first parents, and we are brought into the world with its guilt on our souls.
God bless,

Dave
 
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dcs:
It is de fide that we inherit the guilt of Adam’s sin:

The Council of Trent (ex cathedra): “If any one denies, that, by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, which is conferred in baptism, the guilt of original sin is remitted; or even asserts that the whole of that which has the true and proper nature of sin is not taken away; but says that it is only rased, or not imputed; let him be anathema.” (Session Five, On Original Sin)
respectfully, the Council of Trent was not speaking ex chathedra - that is a formula the Pope uses when speaking infallibly when excersizing the extraordinary magisterium.
It is also an infallable statement, not a de fide dogma.
Trent was an infallible ecumenical council.
The quotes you provided do not state that we are born with personal guilt for original sin.
We are born with the stain of original sin, which bears with it, the guilt of original sin, not the guilt of personal [actual] sin.
 
"Augustine says (Retract. i, 15): ‘Concupiscence is the guilt of original sin.’ "(cited by St. Thomas Aquinas, ST, IIa, 82, 3).

It seems clear that Catholic tradition speaks of “guilt” of original sin as being “descended” from Adam.

God bless,

Dave
 
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