THE ANCESTRAL SIN: A COMPARATIVE STUDY OF THE SIN OF OUR ANCESTORS ADAM AND EVE BY JOHN S. ROMANIDES INTRODUCED AND TRANSLATED BY GEORGE S. GABRIEL
The Ancestral Sin is a comparative study of the sin of our ancestors Adam and Eve according to the paradigms and doctrines of the first and second-century Church and the Augustinian formulation of original sin.
Internationally esteemed as one of the most outstanding Greek Orthodox theologians and patristic scholars of our time, Fr. John Romanides was also a groundbreaking pioneer. Paradoxically, he did not break new but neglected and hallowed ancient ground. In an age of religious syncretism and rationalism, this classic work brings to light ancient truths long ago replaced by juridical schemes and forgotten in most Christian denominations.
Truths regarding the creation ex nihilo, the destiny of man, Adam's sin and fall, the origin of death, soteriology and God's relations with the world were exposited as the doctrines of the primitive Church by the Apostolic and post-Apostolic Fathers of the first and second centuries. Hindered by the paradigms of post-Augustinian thought, Western Christianity has rarely understood these doctrines that predate by several centuries the commonly held juridical ideas of original sin and atonement.
The Ancestral Sin is the only in-depth comparative study of these doctrines and the underlying paradigms of the earliest Church Fathers on the one hand and the scholastic theologians on the other. It presents the integrity of the Orthodox faith and apophatic, empirical theology of the early Church in sharp contrast to the Augustinian and scholastic rationalism expressed by the aphorism credo ut intellegam, or "I believe in order to comprehend."