Paul in addressing the believers in Colossae reminds them that, although they still have earthly desires, their "new self" is capable of knowing God and is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator. Therefore they should seek those things at are above where Christ is seated.
In the Scriptures, original righteousness includes these gifts: a sure and certain knowledge of God, fear of God, confidence in God, and the desire and ability to give God these things. Scripture testifies in Genesis 1:27 that man was made in the image and likeness of God. What else was this image and likeness other than that man was created with wisdom and righteousness so that he could apprehend God and reflect God? Mankind was given the gift of knowing God, fearing God, and being confident in God. Paul shows in Ephesians 5:9 and Colossians 3:10 that the image of God is the knowledge of God, righteousness, and truth.
The ancient definition of original sin is that it is a lack of righteousness. This definition not only denies that mankind is capable of obedience in his body, but also denies that mankind is capable of knowing God, placing confidence in God, fearing and loving God, and certainly also the ability to produce such things. For even the theologians themselves teach that these are not produced without certain gifts and the aid of grace. We say that these gifts are precisely the knowledge of God and fear and confidence in God. It appears that the ancient definition says precisely the same thing that we say, denying fear and confidence toward God. It denies not only the actions, but also the gifts and ability to produce these acts. (paragraphs 17-20, 23)
Condensed from CONCORDIA: THE LUTHERAN CONFESSIONS, copyright 2005,2006 by Concordia Publishing House. Used by permission. All rights reserved. To purchase a copy of CONCORDIA, call 800-325-3040.