13. In the beginning of human history,
our first parents walked with God.
But rather than living by the Creator’s word of life,
they listened to the serpent’s lie
and fell into sin.
In their rebellion
they tried to be like God.
As sinners, Adam and Eve feared
the nearness of God
For the fall of humanity into sin, see Genesis 3. On the serpent, see, in addition to Genesis 3, Revelation 12:9 and 20:2.
14. Fallen in that first sin,
we prove each day
that apart from grace
we are guilty sinners:
we fail to thank God,
we break God’s laws,
we ignore our tasks.
Looking for life without God,
we find death;
grasping for freedom outside the law,
we trap ourselves in Satan's snares;
we lose the gift of joy.
For the effects of the fall on humanity, see especially Romans 1:18-3:18.
15. When humans deface God’s image,
the whole world suffers:
we abuse the creation or idolize it;
we are estranged from our Creator,
from our neighbor,
from our true selves,
and from all that God has made.
On the defacing of God’s image, see Romans 1:21-23; for the restoration of the image in Christ, see Romans 8:29, 2 Corinthians 3:18, Ephesians 4:22-24, and Colossians 3:10.
16. All spheres of life—
family and friendship,
work and worship,
school and state,
play and art—
bear the wounds of our rebellion.
Sin is present everywhere—
in pride of race,
arrogance of nations,
abuse of the weak and helpless,
disregard for water, air, and soil,
destruction of living creatures,
slavery, murder, terror, and war,
worship of false gods,
the mistreatment of our bodies,
and our frantic efforts to escape reality.
We become victims of our own sin.
Among many passages, see Psalm 14 and 53, Amos 1-2, Romans 1:28-32, and Galatians 5:19-21.
17. In all our striving
to excuse or save ourselves,
we stand condemned
before the God of truth.
But our world,
broken and scarred,
still belongs to God,
who holds it together
and gives us hope.
See Psalm 62 and 89:28-37; Romans 5:3-11; 15:13; and Hebrews 11:1.