Catechism Insight – Doctrinal Standard WSC #17 & 18

Doctrinal Standards WSC #17 & 18

  • Q. What happened to man in the fall?
  • A. Man fell into a condition of sin and misery.
  • Q. What is sinful about man’s fallen condition?
  • A. The sinfulness of that fallen condition is twofold. First, in what is commonly called original sin, there is the guilt of Adam’s first sin with its lack of original righteousness and the corruption of his whole nature. Second are all the specific acts of disobedience that come from original sin.

Memory Verses

  • ”For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23, ESV).
  • “Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save, or his ear dull, that it cannot hear” (Isaiah 59:1, ESV).

Study Passage: Romans 3:1-20

Support Passages: Psalm 5:9, 10:7, 14:1-3, 36:1-4; 53:1-4; Isaiah 59

Bible Story: Numbers 13-14 (14:1-10)


  • Adam and Eve were the only two human beings to live without sin. They did not have a sin nature until they disobeyed God by eating of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Since Adam and Eve, the Bible teaches that every single human is born with a sin nature. That is to say they we are “conceived in sin”. From the very beginning of an individual’s life their heart is sinful – they are an enemy of God. It is the death of Christ and the work of the Holy Spirit that enables us to have eternal life.
  • As a result of Adam and Eve’s sin, we display our own disobedience to the true and living God.  Our sinful heart is revealed by the words that come out of our mouth and our sinful actions.

Discussion Questions

  • What is sin?
  • What was the sin of Adam and Eve?
  • What were the consequences of Adam and Eve’s sin?
  • Are individuals born sinful or do they learn how to sin? Explain.
  • If we are born sinful, we are enemies of God. How do we become friends of God?
  • What part does God play in this process?
  • What part does man play in this process?
  • What do our actions and words reveal about our heart?
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that we may present everyone mature in Christ."
(Colossians 1:28, ESV)

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