This talkes about the difference between chapters 3 and 4 and 9 and 10 in the book Adam, Eve and The Serpent. This is for a class called Western Civilization

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Adam, Eve and The Serpent

Mark Sarkisian

Western Civilization

Adam, Eve and the Serpent

It is interesting that Catholic theologians (Pelagius, Julian, and John Chrystostom) did not accept St. Augustine belief that Adam's original sin somehow morally corrupted Adam and his descendants. One objection is that if Adam had this much influence, Adam would be like a God. Likewise, Pagels emphasizes the contradictions in scripture on whether or not Christians should be married or single. These contradictions can be resolved by simply believing that staying single has some good qualities, but getting married also has other good qualities. Likewise, sex is perfectly fine within marriage, but like other gifts, it can also lead to problems and sin when not used lawfully. Refraining from food and sex can be beneficial, but it is not for everyone at all times.

Regarding Jesus' teachings on sexuality, marriage, and divorce: "Jesus and his followers, at the beginning of what came to be called the Christian Era, took up startlingly different attitudes toward divorce, procreation, and family from those that prevailed for centuries among most of their fellow Jews."

{Pagels, 9} Elaine Pagels writes about how sex became sinful among Christians. In its early stages, most of the followers of Jesus were Jews who understood that the command of God was to be fruitful and multiply. But in Jesus' own commands to repent and purify, many followers found the "primary point of reference" to change the Jewish attitude toward sex. Later Gnostics and ascetics emphasized that converting meant more than accepting baptism and following a set of moral codes; it meant finding one's spiritual nature. By the time of Jerome, Christian writers wrote to Christian women to be better than their sisters by abstaining from sex.

Of course, with the fall of the Roman...