What Does It Mean That All Have Sinned? (Romans 3:23)
Are we all born sinners? Is mankind naturally good or naturally sinful by nature?
Romans 3:23 says: For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God
So the Bible is stating that all human beings are guilty of committing sin against God. To sin means to break God’s laws (1 John 3:4).
So when the Bible says that we “all have sinned”, it means that we have all violated God’s law, for example the Ten Commandments (Exodus 20:2-17 and Deuteronomy 5:6-17).
So if you’ve ever told a lie; if you’ve ever stolen something; if you’ve ever had impure thoughts; if you have ever used God’s name in vain; if you’ve ever hated someone – then you are guilty of breaking at least one or more of God’s laws or commandments and this makes you a sinner who falls short of the glory or righteous standard of God.
Romans 3:10-12 says: … “None is righteous, no, not one; 11 no one understands; no one seeks for God. 12 All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.”
Again the Bible is stating that we have all sinned and that every person is born with the natural inclination to sin against God. Therefore there is no one who can claim to be sinless or claim to be naturally good because we are all lawbreakers who have broken God’s laws.
Romans 5:20 NLT says that “God’s law was given so that all people could see how sinful they were…”
1 Timothy 1:9-11 says: Understanding this, that the law is not laid down for the just but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who strike their fathers and mothers, for murderers, 10 the sexually immoral, men who practice homosexuality, enslavers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine, 11 in accordance with the glorious gospel of the blessed God with which I have been entrusted.
Where Did We Inherit Our Sin Nature?
As human beings we all inherited our sin nature from the first man – Adam who sinned against God in the garden of Eden (Genesis 3:1-24).
Romans 5:12-13 NLT says: When Adam sinned, sin entered the world. Adam’s sin brought death, so death spread to everyone, for everyone sinned.
Even when we desire through our own strength to do good, we inevitably find ourselves sinning because of the sin nature that we inherited from Adam.
In Romans 7:21-23 Paul spoke about his own struggle with sin and how there was a battle waging in him, where part of him desired to do good and obey God’s laws, but yet he inevitably found himself sinning.
Romans 7:21-23 NLT says: I have discovered this principle of life—that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong. 22 I love God’s law with all my heart. 23 But there is another power within me that is at war with my mind. This power makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me.
What Is The Remedy For Our Sin Problem?
Sin has the power to affect our relationship with God. Sin put man at enmity with God. Sin also has the power to bring death and spiritually separate us from God (Isaiah 59:2).
Romans 6:23 says: For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
In Romans 7:24-25 Paul asks who can free him from “the life that is dominated by sin and death” and he comes to the conclusion that it is only Jesus Christ who can free him.
Romans 7:24-25 NLT says: Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death? 25 Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord. So you see how it is: In my mind I really want to obey God’s law, but because of my sinful nature I am a slave to sin.
The remedy for mankind’s sin problem is found in believing and accepting the Person of Jesus Christ into one’s life. Total forgiveness of sins for humanity is found in believing in Jesus Christ and the finished work He did on the Cross.
Jesus Christ is God who became flesh (John 1:1-2; John 1:14). Jesus is the Son of God and the perfect sinless Man who came to Earth as the perfect sacrifice to save humanity from sin and the eternal consequences of sin.
John 3:16-17 says: “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through Him.”
2 Corinthians 5:21 NLT says: For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.
Therefore even though sin came into the world through one man – Adam, the Bible says that forgiveness, redemption and salvation for the world also came through one Man – Jesus Christ.
Furthermore, even though we inherited sin through one man – Adam, the Bible also says that we can inherit righteousness and receive salvation from eternal punishment through one Man – Jesus Christ.
Jesus Christ died on the Cross and shed His precious and innocent blood in order to fully pay the debt for our sins. Christ graciously paid the price for our sins so that we do not have to work for our salvation, but instead we can receive salvation as a free gift (Ephesians 2:8-9).
Romans 5:17-18 NLT says: For the sin of this one man, Adam, caused death to rule over many. But even greater is God’s wonderful grace and his gift of righteousness, for all who receive it will live in triumph over sin and death through this one man, Jesus Christ. 18 Yes, Adam’s one sin brings condemnation for everyone, but Christ’s one act of righteousness brings a right relationship with God and new life for everyone. 19 Because one person disobeyed God, many became sinners. But because one other Person obeyed God, many will be made righteous.
So even though we have all sinned and fallen short of God’s perfect standard of righteousness, the Lord offers salvation from sin and its consequences.
Salvation is a free gift of God which we can all receive by believing and accepting Jesus Christ as our personal Lord and Saviour.
John 1:12 says: But to all who did receive Him, who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God
God is not willing to see anyone perish but He is seeking that all would repent and reconcile with Him through Christ (2 Peter 3:9).
God’s remedy for our sin nature is found in accepting Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour. It is only through Jesus Christ that we can receive eternal forgiveness of our sins.
Romans 5:8-10 NLT – But God showed His great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. 9 And since we have been made right in God’s sight by the blood of Christ, He will certainly save us from God’s condemnation. 10 For since our friendship with God was restored by the death of His Son while we were still His enemies, we will certainly be saved through the life of His Son.