13 Characteristics Of The Sinful Nature That We All Have

There are many traits of the sinful nature that the bible talks about that characterize our fallen human nature which makes us do all manner of bad things that we even wonder about at times.

To help us understand this, I’ve compiled a list of 13 characteristics of the sinful nature that defines a sinner who has not been truly saved yet or experienced the new birth.

If you find yourself relating to these characteristics, then you should be very concerned about your soul and what you need to do to get saved.

What’s The Sinful Nature?

According to the bible, sinful nature is defined as the innate attribute and tendency of natural man that makes him rebellious against God inherited from our first parents Adams and Eve.

It’s this original sin we all have in our hearts because of the sin of our first parents that makes us naturally sinful and desire to do evil things.

The bible tells us in Romans 5:19 that we are all born with a sinful nature which can only be dealt with by Christ Jesus on the cross which is why He died to set us free from sin and its consequences.

Related: 7 Major Root Causes Of Sin (That Causes People To Sin.)

13 Characteristics Of The Sinful Nature.

Below are the 13 characteristics of the sinful nature that makes us all sinful by default and do the bad things we don’t like at times.

  • Selfishness.
  • Rebellion.
  • Carnal.
  • Unwilling To Submit To God’s Will.
  • Depraved.
  • Hatred.
  • Unforgiveness.
  • Morally Corrupt.
  • Uncontrolled Fleshly Desires.
  • Pride.
  • Guilt.
  • Hates Righteousness.
  • Not Born Of God.

1. Selfishness.

Selfishness is one of the major characteristics of the sinful nature that we are all born with which makes us naturally selfish and self-centered which is just part of our corrupt human nature.

And this is why we can’t truly love others selflessly unless we are getting something from the people we claim to love due to the selfish nature every human born of a woman has.

This is especially true in these last days we are living in as 2 Timothy 3:2 predicted that many will be lovers of themselves which is why many relationships or marriages don’t last these days as everyone is only about themselves and not the other.

Related: 15 Traits of The Old Nature Of Sin [Summarizing Sinners].

2. Rebellion.

The old nature of sin that controls every unregenerate sinner who hasn’t been saved and washed by the blood of our Lord Jesus Christ is naturally rebellious and disobedient towards God and His commandments found in the bible.

It’s this spirit of disobedience Ephesians 2:2-4 talks about that works and operates in the children of disobedience we see nowadays which has become rampant as many people these days don’t fear God.

And due to this lack of the fear of the Lord that makes one depart from evil (Proverbs 16:6) in sinners, it is why many people are not afraid of doing bad things which they even boast about without being aware of the horrific consequences awaiting them.

3. Carnal.

Carnality is one of the major characteristics of the sinful nature that natural man is born with which makes one mind only carnal and fleshly things that pleases the flesh.

And the apostle Paul says in 1 Corinthians 2:14 that natural man cannot perceive and understand spiritual things of the Holy Spirit which are foolishness to such people as they are spiritually discerned.

If you are carnally minded which is spiritual death according to Romans 8:6 you will only mind things that gratify your sinful flesh and not spiritual things that are beneficial to your precious soul.


4. Unwilling To Submit To God’s Will.

Sinners with an active sinful nature in them are controlled by their sinful nature which makes them hostile toward God. Their minds are in conflict with God and they cannot submit to His law nor can they please Him (Romans 8:6-8).

And such people always want to do things their way and what seems right in their own eyes even if what they are doing is contrary to God’s will as long as it pleases their sinful flesh, they couldn’t care less.

The sinful self-will of wanting it your way and not God’s that comes with the old nature of sin is what makes all unsaved sinners unwilling to submit to God’s will which is contrary to what their sinful flesh desires which is why they rebel against God’s will in the first place.

5. Depraved.

All the moral depravity we are witnessing in society, especially in these last days we are living in is all due to the depraved sinful nature of man.

And this is not restricted to the new testament alone. In the old testament in Genesis 6:11-13, we can see that as men started multiplying, they became exceedingly wicked and depraved in their hearts or minds such that their imaginations were evil continually.

So, all the moral depravity you are seeing now and the depraved things people do to their fellow humans is nothing new as it’s coming from our fallen nature which is why Jesus Christ said in Luke 17:26 that as it was in Noah’s days, so will it be before He comes in the last days.

6. Hatred.

Do you know why people hate each other and do unimaginable evil things to each other like wild animals and even worse than them?

The sinful nature is the reason why people hate each other which is why people kill each other in the first place and all the wars you see now and in the past are all due to the innate hared we have towards each other that stems from our old nature of sin we are born with.

This is why 1 John 3:15 tells us that if you hate someone, you are a murderer by default and it’s this hatred that leads to malice, jealousy, and eventually murder when it has fully matured.

7. Unforgiveness.

Wonder why people hold grudges on petty things against others and are unwilling to forgive and let go even for years? It’s the sin nature that is responsible and this is seen in all kinds of relationships today be it friendships or marriages.

Many people including people who claim to be Christians are full of bitterness and unforgiveness towards people who hurt them in one way or the other and just can’t let go of the offenses done against them which is sad indeed.

Jesus Christ warns such people that if they don’t forgive other people’s trespasses, neither will their Father in heaven forgive them also (Matthews 6:15). Revenge or beef is now rampant nowadays which is why people kill each other over petty things that can make you laugh at times.

8. Morally Corrupt.

It’s just a matter of fact that our evil sinful nature is the reason why we are inherently corrupt morally and this moral corruption can be seen in the rampant sexual perversions in our society today.

All the incest, child defilement, rape, homosexuality, lesbianism, and so on is the result of the morally corrupt nature we have due to the original sin we inherited from our first parents who first sinned by eating the forbidden fruit in the garden of Eden.

The bible says in 2 Timothy 3:1-5 that evil and moral perversions of all kinds will be on the increase in the last days due to the weak moral fiber and character most people will have these days.

9. Uncontrolled Fleshly Desires.

A person or a sinner without God’s grace that brings salvation to everyone Titus 2:11 talks about will be led by their sinful fleshly desires to do all manner of abominations God is against.

If you still have the corrupt nature of the sin of your old self, all the works of the flesh Galatians 5:19-21 talks about will what characterize your life.

Due to the uncontrolled sinful fleshy desires of the flesh in many people, it’s the reason why sexual immorality and abortions are commonplace in many young people who can’t discipline their bodies with God’s word.

Related: How To Have Victory Over The Flesh [In 12 Simple Steps.]

10. Pride.

Pride is the most common characteristic of the old nature of sin that we are all born with that makes us not submit to God’s sovereignty or will.

And it’s this sinful pride we are all born with that makes us hate and despise correction and wise counsel of the Lord and His servants who try to correct us of our evil ways.

If you are such a person who is full of pride and yourself, Proverbs 16:18 has a warning for you that you will soon come to ruin if you don’t remove your pride and arrogance reign on the throne of your heart as Satan found out the hard way when he was cast out of heaves with his angels.

11. Guilt.

Sin always brings guilt and condemnation to one’s life as we see in Genesis 3:9-13 when Adam and Eve hid from the presence of the Lord due to the fear of what they did.

Every sinner has this guilt of sin that makes such people fear and tremble before the Lord which is why they are afraid and ashamed to be in God’s presence due to the guilt conscience convicting them of their sin.

And if you want this guilt of sin to go away from your life, all you need to do is repent and give your life to Jesus Christ who can cleanse and set you free from the guilt of sin that is brought upon every sinner.

Related: 11 Consequences Of Sin (To Help Avoid Sin All Costs.)

12. Hates Righteousness.

It’s just a matter of fact that our old sinful nature hates righteousness and loves to sin because our sinful flesh is corrupt and fallen which is the opposite of the new nature one gets when one become born again.

This is why you will hate righteousness if you still have the old nature of sin in you and love that which is evil which is seen in the lives of many people who practice evil and take pleasure in it.

Paul talks about such people in 2 Thessalonians 2:7-12 who take pleasure in unrighteousness and have no love for the truth in them. Many people love their sin and filth like hell which is why they can’t turn away from it.

Related: 11 Signs Of A Wicked Heart (Evil People Always Manifest.)

13. Not Born Of God.

Last but not least, not being born of God is the most important characteristic of the sinful nature that makes a sinner act the way they do and do the evil they do with impunity.

We are told in 1 John 3:9 that a person born of God does not sin God’s seed abides in him and he cannot keep on sinning because he has been born of God.

But if you are not born of God with the new imputed nature of the Lord Jesus Christ in you to help not sin, you will still sin even if you don’t want to as the Adamic old nature of sin is still active in you.

Related: 13 Signs You Are Not Saved (Indicating Fake Conversion.)


I hope the above 13 characteristics of the sinful nature will now help you have a clear understanding of why people do evil or sin in the first place. In closing, if you found this post helpful, kindly let me know in the comments below as well as any questions you might have on what you have read. Stay blessed and don’t forget to share.

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