It has been alleged by the Christian Research Institute that Adventism teaches that Christ had a sinful nature. Many Adventists covering the nature of Christ, state that Jesus Christ was born with Adam's fallen nature that has been passed on to all of humanity but did not sin. Such a belief is based on the following texts:
- "For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh" (Romans 8:3 NKJV)
- "For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin." (Hebrews 4:15 NKJV)
- "...concerning his Son (Jesus), who was descended from David according to the flesh..." (Romans 1:3 ESV)
- "Therefore, in all things He had to be made like His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people." (Hebrews 2:17 NKJV)
Adventist doctrine is that He took "man's nature in its fallen condition," but yet "Christ did not in the least participate in its sin", which shows Christ with post fall humanity but a sinlessness of Adam before the fall Mainstream Adventists believe that Jesus was beset with all of the moral weaknesses and frailties that ordinary humans experience. However, He did not have the propensity to sin. Christ could be tested by temptation, but like Adam before the fall, did not have our ungodly desires or sinful inclinations. Ellen White states "The Lord Jesus came to our world, not to reveal what a God could do, but what a man could do, through faith in God’s power to help in every emergency. Man is, through faith, to be a partaker in the divine nature, and to overcome every temptation wherewith he is beset."
Despite this, he managed to resist temptation both from within and without, and lived a perfectly obedient life. Jesus is therefore set forth as the supreme Example in whose footsteps Christians must follow. The fact that he overcame sin completely, despite having no advantage over other human beings, demonstrates that we too can live a life of complete obedience by trusting in him. Ellen White states "The Lord Jesus came to our world, not to reveal what a God could do, but what a man could do, through faith in God’s power to help in every emergency. Man is, through faith, to be a partaker in the divine nature, and to overcome every temptation wherewith he is beset."
Adventists are firm believers that people are saved by faith and not through works, however works are the necessary fruits that are proof of God truly being given a place in our lives.
"Notwithstanding that the sins of a guilty world were laid upon Christ, notwithstanding the humiliation of taking upon Himself our fallen nature, the voice from heaven declared Him to be the Son of the Eternal"
— Ellen White, The Desire of Ages, p. 112.
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