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Hope for Sinners

 

By Heath Jarrett

Human beings are the capstone of God’s creation, uniquely made in the image of God and given dominion over all the earth (Gen 1:26–29). At the culmination of creation, God expressed his delight with everything he had made, saying, “it was very good” (Gen 1:31). Adam and Eve were perfect people living in a perfect world.

However, when Adam sinned in the Garden of Eden by breaking God’s sole prohibition, that perfection was shattered. Sin entered into the world through one man’s disobedience, and the curse of death has reigned over humanity ever since (Rom 5:12–14). Just as God warned, “in the day that you eat of it you shall surely die” (Gen 2:17), humanity has been plagued with both physical death and spiritual death as a result of sin. While Adam went on to live physically for over 900 years, he still succumbed to death as did his descendants (Gen 5). The unraveling disease of death went instantly to work on man.

But even more striking is the immediate break in fellowship with God that Adam and Eve experienced. With one sin, the perfect relationship between man and God was broken. Immediately after the fall, Adam and Eve sought to hide themselves from the presence of the Lord and to make excuses for their actions (Gen 3:7–13). Spiritually, the deathblow of sin came in a moment.

Adding to our human predicament, we are all subjected to the power of Satan, as we willingly follow him in our dead spiritual condition.

“And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience—among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind” (Eph 2:1–3).

Though it appears unfair that Adam’s sin and guilt has infected all of humanity, we cannot seek to be exonerated from condemnation. Death “spread to all men because all sinned” (Rom 5:12). We all have willingly sinned and have received its curse for we are all “by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind” (Eph 2:3).
Mankind’s only hope is the last Adam (Rom 5:14; 1 Cor 15:45). Praise God, where Adam failed, Christ has prevailed!

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