Is Sinful Nature in itself Sin?
1. What is sin?
"Sin is the transgression of the law" - 1 John 3:4. Sinful nature is NOT sin. Just like temptation, it is not sin. Only when one yields to temptation then sin appears because the law becomes broken. There can be one thousand temptations knocking on the door and sin cannot be present if there is no yielding to any of those. Thus, sinful nature in itself is NOT sin.
Having a fallen sinful nature does not make one automatically a sinner.
The truth is - You and I will not have eternal life because of unrepented sin(s), not because we have a fallen sinful nature.
2. Did we inherit a fallen sinful nature or sin?
We inherited a fallen sinful nature from Adam and Eve. We did not inherit sin. There is a big difference between inheriting a fallen sinful nature and inheriting sin.
3. Are we accountable for our fallen sinful nature or sin?
We are not responsible for our fallen sinful nature since we inherited without our choice, but for sin we committed by our own choices. Since we are accountable for the sins we committed, therefore, we ought to live a life without sin by God's divine power - 1 Peter 1:15-16; 1 Corinthians 10:13.
Our fallen sinful nature will remain with us until death, but we are not going to be condemned for having it since that does not make us sinners naturally. What makes us sinners is - when we transgress the law of God - [1 John 3:4]. If we continue to sin until death, we will reap the wages of sin which is eternal death - [Romans 6:23; Hebrews 10:26]..
4. Is having a fallen sinful nature by choice or without a choice?
Since we inherited a fallen sinful nature, we do not have a choice. But to commit sin, it is a choice. That is why we are responsible for sin. We can choose not to sin by choosing the power of God to help us overcome all temptations - 1 Corinthians 10:13. The bottom line is - sinful nature in itself is NOT sin.
5. Are We Born Sinners? Or - Are We Born With a Fallen Sinful Nature?
We are all born with a fallen sinful nature. Since we are all born with a fallen sinful nature, we are not born sinners. A sinner is someone who transgresses the law of God. A baby is not a sinner. [Read the topic on - "Are We Sinners By Nature?"]
For one to believe that we are born sinners because of our fallen sinful nature is making a false conclusion - that sinful nature in itself is sin.
6. What is the heresy of the teaching that says, "We are born sinners?"
This teaching is saying that because of your inherited fallen sinful nature, you are a sinner. Thus, the inherited fallen sinful nature now becomes the cause of sin rather than sin is by choice and it is the transgression of the law.
Another way of saying "we are born sinners" are as follows:
(i) "We are born robbers" ... therefore we cannot change our nature from being robbers because that is the way we are. That is our condition. And we will continue to be robbers until Jesus Christ comes back again.
(ii) "We are born idol worshippers" ... therefore we cannot change our nature from being idol worshippers because that is the way we are. That is our condition. And we will continue to be idol worshippers until Jesus Christ comes back again.
(iii) "We are born adulterers" .... therefore we cannot change our nature from being an adulterer because that is the way we are. That is our condition. And we will continue to be audlterers until Jesus Christ comes back again.
If the Holy Spirit of God is within us, we would never accept such teachings in the church.
7. Can we change our fallen sinful nature?
No we can't. Our fallen sinful nature will remain with us until death because we inherited it, and it is part of us. However, we are not sinners because of our fallen sinful nature.
Anyone who is in Christ is a new creature - 2 Corinthians 5:17.
8. What will change when we are in Christ while we are alive? Is it our fallen sinful nature or our character?
If Christ lives in us, our characters will change to be Christ-like while we are alive. If we lived a Christ-like character at the point of our death, we should expect to be resurrected in the first resurrection when Jesus Christ returns, and our mortal bodies to change from mortality to immortality
Why should we continue to believe the heresy that says, "We are sinners by nature?."