We believe the Bible teaches that every desire, thought, word, and action contrary to God's will is sin, and that all sin is displeasing to God, harmful to ourselves and others, and a corrupting influence on creation and culture.1 The essence and root of sin is our failure to love, obey, and trust God as He is worthy to be loved, obeyed, and trusted.2 The human race sinned collectively against God when our first parents, Adam and Eve, disobeyed God's commandment.3 Consequently, all people of the human race, except Jesus Christ, both inherit a nature separated from the life of God and earn an unrighteous standing before Him.4 Thus, apart from union with Christ, all people are spiritually dead, enslaved to sin and self, and prone to the devil’s deception and influence.5 No one but Jesus Christ is inherently deserving of eternal life or able to enter God's kingdom except by God's grace.6
1 On sin involving desires, thoughts, words, and actions: Gen. 6:5; Matt. 9:4, 12:36, and 15:19; Mark 7:20-23; Acts 8:22; Rom. 1:21-23 and 2:16; 2 Cor. 10:4-5; Heb. 4:12-13; 1 John 3:4. On sin as displeasing to God, harmful to ourselves and others, and corrupting to creation: Gen. 3:17 and 6:6; Ps. 7:11; Prov. 13:15; Rom. 1:18-32.
2 Ex. 20:2-3; 2 Chron. 12:14; Ps. 10:4; Matt. 22:37-38; Rom. 14:23.
3 Gen. 3:1-7; Rom. 5:12-14 and 19.
4 Ephesians 2:1-3; Romans 3:10-20.
5 On an unrighteous standing before God: Rom. 3:10-23 and 5:15. On a corrupted nature: Rom. 5:12-14; Eph. 2:1-3 and 4:18.
6 Matt. 19:25-26; Luke 17:10; John 3:3-6, 6:44, and 14:6; Acts 11:18; Rom. 8:5-8; 1 Cor. 2:14; 2 Tim. 2:25.