The Doctrine Of Original Sin

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Uncontestably, Augustine is the most prominent and influential church father, for the Western Church. As the last of the ancient Christian writers, his theology not only formulated medieval scholarship; conversely, Augustine considerably impacted the theology of the Protestant Reformation. Regarding original sin and hamartiology, Augustine is the fountainhead, for both Protestant and Roman Catholic’s; however, he was not the originator of the doctrine. Depicting humankind’s solidarity with Adam preceded the teaching of Augustine, but none discussed humanity’s willful complicity in Adam’s sin as vividly and thoroughly. Imperative to understanding the doctrine of original sin is establishing the distinction between evil and sin, being…show more content…
Understanding the Backdrop
Augustine’s initial theological formulation of original sin came as a response to the Manichaean movement, with whom he affiliated for nearly ten years. The Manichaean doctrine of evil was utterly unacceptable to Augustine, especially regarding their absolute dualism of Light and Darkness struggling against one another. Augustine denied the existence of two “eternally antagonistic principles,” and affirmed that all that exists must come from God. Augustine, writing against the Manichaeans, asserts,
Bring before our minds good things however great, which it is fitting that we attribute to God as their author, and these having been eliminated let us see whether any nature will remain. All life both great and small, all power great and small, all safety great and small…all peace great and small, and whatever other like things may occur, especially such as are found throughout all things, whether spiritual or corporeal, every measure, every form, every order both great and small, are from the Lord God.
Augustine considered everything existent as created by God, the author of life and thus, everything was established for good. Thus, evil is not an entity, nor is it nature; rather
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