Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Bible Q&A: Are Sins Passed Down Through Generations?

Yes and no. Our sins can affect the generations that come after us. Children are born with addictions to crack cocaine because of the sins of their parents. As children grow up, they learn from, and imitate their parents. Children that see their parents engaged in sin, whether it be something as major as drug abuse or something many consider minor as regularly missing church services, and that lifestyle is imitated and passed down to the children. One can see this with the children of the Israelites who often not only imitated their parents, but took one their sins one step further. This does not mean that the children are forced into this lifestyle, they always have choice, but what children learn, they often imitate. Sins are not passed down or inherited as some suppose. Verses such as Ezekiel 18:20 teach that each soul is responsible for his or her own sins. We are not born bearing the sin of Adam or the sin of our parents though their sins can physically affect us even from birth. We are all responsible for our own souls and our own sins and must act accordingly.

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