12 Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned
18 Therefore, as through one man’s offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life. 19 For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man’s obedience many will be made righteous.
Romans 5:12, 18-19
In Genesis 2:7, God made the loving decision to create man in his image and in His likeness.
We know what happened. Man chose to disobey God.
Romans 5:12 says:
Wherefore as by one man sin entered into the world and death by sin and death passed upon all men for that all have sinned
The Greek tense for this word, "sinned", is what’s called an heiress tense; which means it points back to an event that took place in the past. When it says all have sinned, it's not dealing with our individual sins; it's dealing with the sin of Adam. We all sinned in Adam. We see an example of this in Hebrews 7:9-10, where Levi is said to have paid tithe through Abraham, his ancestor.
As a result of Adam’s sin, we experience death. We don't like it. we don't want it; but that's what Adam brought upon us.
Romans 5:19 tells us:
for as by one man's disobedience (Adam’s) many were made sinners, by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.
It took one man to make us all sinners, likewise, through the righteousness of one man, we can be made righteous. The verse speaks of that other man; the second Adam, who does something that undoes what Adam did.
This is good news!
In Romans chapter 6:23, Paul mentions this good news. He says here
"For the wages of sin is death"
That's what we've been experiencing, watching people die, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
We need to distinguish between the death that Jesus saved us from and the death that we now still experience.
I want you to stroll with me just for a few moments. In John 11 we see Jesus. He's with his disciples. He gets word from the sisters of Lazarus, his dear friend, that Lazarus is sick. They want Jesus to come and heal him. But Jesus delayed, and Lazarus died.
Notice what it says in John 11:11. Jesus tells them
“these things said he after that he said unto them our friend Lazarus sleepeth, but I go that I may awake him out of sleep. Then said his disciples, Lord, if he sleeps, he shall do well.”
We would expect for somebody, if they get rest, to get better.
"How-be-it, Jesus spake of his death but they thought that he had spoken of taking a rest in sleep. Then said Jesus unto them plainly, Lazarus is dead" (Verse 13).
Here we find that the death that everybody now experience is a death that Jesus calls sleep, but he says that he can awake people out of this kind of death.
The Bible also speaks of another death. Revelation 20: 13 deals with the special resurrection of those who have rejected God and his salvation. It says:
The sea gave up the dead which were in it, and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them, and they were judged every man according to their works (verse 14).
Hell, here, meaning the grave, was cast into the lake of fire; this is the second death (verse 15). Whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast in the lake of fire.
That death is referred to as a second death. The Bible does not show anywhere where there's a resurrection from this death; that one is final. In other words, it's like an eternal death of permanent non-existence. There's no coming back from this. That's the death that Christ endured. He suffered and was victorious over this eternal aspect of death. He conquered it, and then he went into the grave. He rested there for three days and rose again victorious, also over the grave.
When he came here, he had to conquer eternal death and the grave.
Jesus knew he was going to die for the sin of the world. Even before He gets to the cross, He experiences something rather shocking for a young man in his 30s. After his last supper on Thursday night, Jesus, with his disciples, is walking to the garden of Gethsemane, where he will eventually be arrested.
As he's going to the garden, Jesus suddenly says, my soul is utterly sorrowful, even unto death. Jesus is letting his disciples know something has gripped him. This is the experience of that eternal death that Christ is experiencing.
The Bible also tells us in Hebrews 2:9 that Christ tasted death for every man. It's this death, which is equivalent to that second death, that Christ suffered.
He's praying. He's agonizing. In fact, he's sweating drops of blood. This is not normal. This is not the kind of death that we usually see. At the cross, He cries out "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?"
We see something that happens when one is experiencing this eternal death. It's one in which one is being separated from God. That's what sin does to us.
1 Corinthians 15:22 says, "for as in Adam all died, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.” Adam caused death. Christ makes it so that people may live forever.
To save humanity from extinction, Jesus united his divinity with our humanity; we are made one with him. Then he takes that humanity and lives a perfect life, which the law of God demands. The law also demands the death of the sinner. Christ suffers, defeats eternal death, and then after conquering that rested in the tomb for three days, rising with the key to death and hell.
Now we can access that life that is in Christ by faith.
2 Corinthians 1:9 says:
"but we have the sentence of death in ourselves that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God which raises the dead.”
We were facing death. The human race was condemned to eternal death because of Adam's sin, but God sent his Son to reverse what Adam did. Adam did something that affected all of us, but Jesus did something that also affected all of us.
May you also experience the wonderful blessing of having life through the Son, Jesus Christ. He's our only solution to our sin problem -- and the death problem that sin has brought upon the human race. If you believe on Him and accept Jesus Christ and what he's already accomplished for you, oh my friend, you will personally experience that salvation. Jesus suffered eternal death for us, and one day he's coming to deliver us from this present world of sin and take us to a world where there's no more sin, no more death, and no more suffering. God bless you.
The storms of this life often threatens to overflow and overwhelm us; but in God's Word we find reasons to keep swimming; keep striving; keep pressing and holding on. In this series we explore 21 reasons why we can have hope, even in a world, or personal experience, that feels hopeless.