We Became Fallen in Sin
Because of the fall, we are now radically
different beings from what God intended us to be
For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.
— Romans 3:23
According to Romans 3:23, quoted above, as human beings we now have two basic problems before God. First, we have sinned. This happened in Adam and Even, our first parents (Gen. 3). We may argue with God that we were not there in the garden, but no one who is truthful with themselves will deny that, however that may be, today we are nonetheless sinful.
Yet, while we are all aware of the problem of sin, this verse goes on to speak of a second problem that few are aware of, namely, that we “fall short of the glory of God.” To say that we “fall short of the glory of God” means that we have failed to obtain the glory that God created us for. While this is speaking of something very negative, in doing so it also shows us something very positive, namely, that God created us for the purpose of obtaining His glory. But, because we are now sinful, the way for us to obtain that glory has been closed off, and in ourselves there is no longer any possibility of us ever gaining the glory God so wanted us to have.
And it is not only that we have done something wrong, but that we ourselves have been constituted with sin (Rom. 5:19). This is why, in this symbol, our soul and our body are black. However, there is a part of our being that is not completely fallen. This is our spirit. Within the spirit of even fallen human beings the conscience is still functioning, to a greater or lesser extent; were this not the case, we simply could not live on this earth, for the evil of man would simply be too great. So, to signify that our conscience still has some function, it is grey, rather than completely black.
Nonetheless, we have the problem of sin, which we should not have, and we do not have the glory of God, which we should have. We are, therefore, radically different beings from what God intended us to be, and that is why there is so much suffering in the world today. And because this is our situation, any salvation that God provides for us, to be a complete salvation, must fully deal with these two problems: the problem of sin and the problem of not having God’s glory. And that’s what we will see in the following steps. But first, we need to consider the ultimate result of the fall.