Jesus and the Role of Sin in the Catholic Church

Essay by Syphorix May 2004

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According to the Catholic Church, every Catholic, through the sacrament of Baptism, "is freed from sin and reborn." Through the first sacrament of baptism and immersion, all individual members of the Catholic Church engage in the act of becoming members of Christ. Baptism enables an adherent of the faith to incorporate into the Church and made sharers in the mission of the Church. ("The Seven Sacraments of the Church ("The Seven Sacraments of the Church." 1213:5) However, without Christ's sacrifice of his life and suffering on behalf of humanity the sacrament of baptism would not be possible.

Baptism addresses the Original Sin of Adam and Eve in a way made possible only by the sacrifice of Jesus. As St. John baptized Jesus, so are all adherents of the Church. By Jesus' teaching, suffering, and dying the Church and its sacraments gain its power and original sin is obviated. "If water springing up from the earth symbolizes life, the water of the sea is a symbol of death and so can represent the mystery of the cross.

By this symbolism Baptism signifies communion with Christ's death." ("The Seven Sacraments of the Church." (1220) As Jesus was baptized, so are those who follow Him are baptized, and reborn anew into the life his sacrifice created.

Jesus Christ was the Son of God, sent to earth on behalf of God to die for the sins of humanity. When Jesus suffered, he engaged in atonement for all of the sins of humanity by taking on a fleshy existence. This is why for Catholics, it is so important to understand why Jesus, the Son of God "was set forth into the world as the son of a woman." (Creed: 3:1) To engage in the act of catechism or unity with the church is to become...