This is a good little quote mine made by Ancient Insights on the topic of original sin. Ultimately, most people do not understand the topic not because they do not know that we inherit sinful proclivities and death, but people are woefully ignorant what sin (sinful proclivities) and death really are. Both are a separation from the divinizing grace (energies) of God as a result of a will that turns away from God. That’s it. And so, the deforming of human willing leads to the cascading effect of physical *and* spiritual death.

This is not a complicated issue and it in fact is Biblically consistent and the fathers teach this, especially when we keep this in mind and harmonize all their views on original sin. Death or concupiscence are not arbitrary punishments given to mankind. They are the symptoms of a disease, a will that does not cooperate with God’s will.

Proper anthropology teaches that man naturally always cooperates with God’s will. It is when we act against nature, that we sin, and acting against nature, we become physically and psychologically dysfunctional–hence our degradation into sinfulness and death.

I recommend that those who want to get deeper in the weeds to read my article:

Perhaps the best scholar on this topic is a Roman Catholic, Dr. Benjamin Heidgerkin. You can watch an interview with him here where he explains the topic:

Ancient Insights

Unfortunately, it’s a common idea nowadays that the Orthodox Church does not teach the “Augustinian” doctrine of original sin, and insteads opts for a mysterious belief in “ancestral sin.” However, this is simply not true. As will be demonstrated from the citations below, the Orthodox Church dogmatically teaches the doctrine of original sin. From the writings of the early Fathers, to the Ecumenical and pan-Orthodox Synods, to the teachings of contemporary saints, theologians, and catechisms, the Holy Church proclaims original sin, as it was formulated by St. Augustine and the Council of Carthage +419, at every level of her infallible teaching authority.

I’ve laid out these citations in chronological order so you can clearly see an unbroken chain, from the early Church to the modern day, of original sin being taught authoritatively:

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