Q.17: What is sin?
A. Sin is any want of conformity unto, or transgression of, the law of God.
( 1John 3:4 )
Q.18: What was the sin whereby our first parents fell from the estate wherein they were created?
A. The sin whereby our first parents fell from the estate wherein they were created, was their eating the forbidden fruit.
( Genesis 3:6,12 )
Q.19: Did all mankind fall in Adam’s transgression?
A. The covenant being made with Adam, not only for himself but for his posterity, all mankind descending from him in ordinary generation sinned in him, and fell with him in his first transgression.
( Genesis 2:16-17; Romans 5:12; 1Corinthians 15:21-22 )
Q.20: Into what estate did the fall bring mankind?
A. The fall brought mankind into an estate of sin and misery.
( Romans 5:12 )
Q.21: Wherein consists the sinfulness of that estate whereinto man fell?
A. The sinfulness of that estate whereinto man fell, consists in the guilt of Adam’s first sin, the want of original righteousness, and the corruption of his whole nature, which is commonly called original sin; together with all actual transgressions which proceed from it.
( Romans 5:12-21; Ephesians 2:1-3; James 1:14-15; Matthew 15:19 )
Q.22: What is the misery of that estate whereinto man fell?
A. All mankind by their fall lost communication with God, are under His wrath and curse, and so made liable to all miseries in this life, to death itself, and to the pains of hell for ever.
( Genesis 3:8,10,24; Ephesians 2:2-3; Galatians 3:10; Lamentations 3:39; Romans 6:23; Matthew 25:41,46 )
Q.23: Did God leave all mankind to perish in the estate of sin and misery?
A. God having out of His mere good pleasure, from all eternity, elected some to everlasting life, did enter into a covenant of grace, to deliver them out of the estate of sin and misery, and to bring them into an estate of salvation by a Redeemer.