Welcome!

We’re posting one question and answer per week, for 52 weeks in 2019, based on the New City Catechism. Our hope is that you will take the time each week to memorize these questions and answers in an effort to strengthen your biblical knowledge and to “always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have” (1 Peter 3:15).

For background information on why we chose this Catechism resource and for a list of the entire Catechism, CLICK HERE.

We hope that you will find this resource to be useful in your study time, and especially as you discuss what you are learning in small groups or with family.

Q14 – Why can’t we keep God’s Law?

Q14: Did God create us unable to keep his law?

A: No, but because of the disobedience of our first parents, Adam and Eve, all of creation is fallen; we are all born in sin and guilt, corrupt in our nature and unable to keep God’s law.

Scripture Reference 
“Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so spread to all men because all sinned.” Romans 5:12


The Vertical Truth in Faith – What does this truth mean in my relationship with God?

An event outside of ourselves and prior to our existence caused us to be infected by sin’s curse. This may seem cruel of God at first glance; however, we must remember the remedy God provided. Through one man (Adam) came the curse on all mankind – through another man (Jesus) came deliverance for every person who believes from the curse and its effects. Because of this truth we can live in relationship with God again, as he originally designed. Also, this truth shows us a glimpse of the redemptive heart of God. He is a rescuer and He is determined to restore all things.

  • Romans 5:18-19“Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness lead to justification and life for all men. For as by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous.”
  • Romans 5:1“Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
  • Colossians 1:19-22“For in him all the fullness of God was please to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross. And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him,”

The Horizontal Truth in Love – What does this truth mean in my relationship with humanity?

We are frequently reminded of the fallen nature of our world. The depravity and the effects of sin are rampant. We can easily be swept away by fear and hopelessness because of news headlines or the actions of others we see with our own eyes. It’s important for us to remember that God provided Jesus as the Savior for the very people who are living under the curse of sin. We have the privilege of sharing this incredible truth with those who need to be rescued. We have the ability to demonstrate that the curse of sin no longer has control of us.

  • 1 Corinthians 5:18-20“All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.”
  • Romans 6:12-14“Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal bodies, to make you obey their passions. Do not present your members to sin as instruments for unrighteousness but present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and your members to God as instruments for righteousness. For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but grace.”

Practical Truth in Action – How can I put this truth into action?

The truth from Romans 5:12 can be helpful for us to include when we share the good news of Jesus with others. It shows God’s heart for us but also His ability to rescue us while honoring justice.  Also, we should expect that those who haven’t received the antidote for sin will live under the curse of sin. We should be sobered that so many are living without God and pray for their salvation instead. If you don’t genuinely have a heart to see those living under the curse come to Jesus – then start with asking God to give you a heart for people who don’t know Him and the opportunity to share the hope of Christ with them.

  • Matthew 9:12Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick Go and learn what this means, ‘I desire mercy, and not sacrifice.’ For I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.”
  • Luke 23:34“And Jesus said, ‘Father forgive them, for they know not what they do’.”
  • 1 Timothy 2:1-2First of all, then I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people.”
  • Romans 10:14-15But how are they to call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!’”

Note to readers

New City Catechism is a tool intended to spark family discussions and to inspire pursuits of greater understanding and spiritual growth. Gain greater insights by reading referenced scriptures in context and/or full chapters in your Bible. As a part of your prayers, ask the Lord for wisdom and understanding. The Bible reads, in James 1:5, “if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.”

More Questions & Answers:

Q13 – Who can keep God’s Law?

Q13: Can anyone keep the law of God perfectly? A: Since the fall, no mere human has been able to keep the law of God perfectly, but consistently breaks it in thought, word, and deed. Scripture Reference  None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks...