Natural Born Killers

Daily Reading – Genesis 3:1-7 – Romans 5:10-21

In Romans, Paul explains how we are affected by the sin of Adam and how Adam’s actions were a type of the future actions of Christ. Through one man death came to all men. And in a far greater way, the actions of one man brought the gift of righteousness.

First, notice the consequence of Adam’s sin.

Romans 5:12

“Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because (you) all sinned”

How is this possible?

square_genesis3_desaturateAdam sinned by breaking a command of God. Sin entered the world and was imputed to us, meaning it is as if we were there together with Adam when he sinned. (and thus all sinned Romans 5:12) We are all natural born killers because our father Adam was a law-breaker. David says it like this,

Psalm 51:5

“Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.”

However, Romans says that sin is not taken into account when there is no law (verse 13), and yet those who lived from Adam to Moses, before the covenant was given at Sinai, were held captive to death. Even though we did not rebel against the command, we were in our nature law-breakers along with our father Adam who did rebel against the command.

(A question here concerns the destiny of babies who were brought forth in iniquity and suffered the consequence of death before they had a chance to come to the knowledge of faith. Here is a resource concerning this question.)

This is the first of the 3 great transactions in the Bible.

I. Adam to mankind
II. Mankind to Christ
III. Christ to us

The second great transaction is mankind giving our sin over to Christ.

2 Corinthians 5:21

For our sake he (God) made him (Christ) to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

Just as a hand was laid on the sin offering in the Old Testament to represent the passing of guilt from man to the unblemished sacrifice (Levitiucs 4:4, 4:24, 4:33), God laid is hand on Christ and transferred the guilt of Adam along with the many trespasses of our own rebellion on his unblemished sacrifice.

Romans 5:17

But the free gift is not like the trespass. For if many died through one man’s trespass, much more have the grace of God and the free gift by the grace of that one man Jesus Christ abounded for many. And the free gift is not like the result of that one man’s sin. For the judgment following one trespass brought condemnation, but the free gift following many trespasses brought justification. For if, because of one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ.

So through the one act of righteousness, Christ becomes the Second Adam and imputes to mankind the gift of righteousness. This is the third great imputation in Scripture.

Can you be sure of your salvation? Absolutely. For our righteousness is imputed to us as a free gift of grace. For you to lose your salvation Christ would have to stop being God.

There is a great phrase in verse 17 that describes the gift of those who receive Christ’s righteousness. They will “reign in life.” This comes to pass in the vision John had of the New Heaven and the New Earth.

Revelation 22:1-5

Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb through the middle of the street of the city; also, on either side of the river, the tree of life with its twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit each month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. No longer will there be anything accursed, but the throne of God and of the Lamb will be in it, and his servants will worship him. They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. And night will be no more. They will need no light of lamp or sun, for the Lord God will be their light, and they will reign forever and ever.

As a result of the sin of our father Adam, mankind lost the Garden of Eden. But the free gift is not like the trespass and our promise is much greater than to simply be restored to the garden. God takes us beyond Adam all the way to Christ.

Reflection

I. What are some sins in your life that evidence you inherited the iniquity of your father Adam?

II. What is the significance that Christ became sin on your behalf?

III. Through the gift of righteousness we have the promise to reign in life forever. Take a few moments to consider what we have to look forward to on that day.

No condemnation

There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. Romans 8:1

Heir of God 

and if children, then heirs—heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him. Romans 8:17

Brothers of Christ

For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. Romans 8:29

Perfection

Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is. 1 John 3:2

Glorified Body

But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself. Philippians 3:20-21

No More Pain

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” Revelation 21:1-5

And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.”

The Emmaus Trail is a weekly devotional study that explores the theme of God reconciling himself to the world through the redemption of his Son. 

Luke 24

That very day two of them were going to a village named Emmaus, about seven miles from Jerusalem, and they were talking with each other about all these things that had happened. While they were talking and discussing together, Jesus himself drew near and went with them. But their eyes were kept from recognizing him. And he said to them, “What is this conversation that you are holding with each other as you walk?” And they stood still, looking sad. Then one of them, named Cleopas, answered him, “Are you the only visitor to Jerusalem who does not know the things that have happened there in these days?” And he said to them, “What things?” And they said to him, “Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, a man who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people, and how our chief priests and rulers delivered him up to be condemned to death, and crucified him. But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel. Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since these things happened. Moreover, some women of our company amazed us. They were at the tomb early in the morning, and when they did not find his body, they came back saying that they had even seen a vision of angels, who said that he was alive. Some of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said, but him they did not see.” And he said to them, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?” And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself. 

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