Friday, August 13, 2010

Original Sin - Romans 5:12 - Part 1 of 3

Romans 5:12-14 - Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned—  13 for until the Law sin was in the world, but sin is not imputed when there is no law.  14 Nevertheless death reigned from Adam until Moses, even over those who had not sinned in the likeness of the offense of Adam, who is a type of Him who was to come.
How is it that we are born sinful?  How did sin enter the world and cause the curse and all the problems that came as a result.

v12a - Therefore, just as through one man – Here we do get the origins of sin.  Through one man.  The focus here though is not merely on the origin of sin, or even Adam… even though that is a prevalent issue Paul is dealing with.  The larger issue is here though is to show a contrast.  To set up how it is through one man all die… but that is only important because of the contrast Paul will make in beginning in verse 15.  Though that through one man, all mankind die… through Christ, salvation has been provided.

Adam… he is our federal father.  Representative of the whole human race.  Genesis 3:16-19 - To the woman He said, “I will greatly multiply Your pain in childbirth, In pain you will bring forth children;
Yet your desire will be for your husband, And he will rule over you.”  17 Then to Adam He said, “Because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree about which I commanded you, saying, ‘You shall not eat from it’; Cursed is the ground because of you; In toil you will eat of it All the days of your life.  18 “Both thorns and thistles it shall grow for you; And you will eat the plants of the field;  19 By the sweat of your face You will eat bread, Till you return to the ground, Because from it you were taken; For you are dust, And to dust you shall return.”

From that point, the whole human race has been thrown into sin.  Why?  Are we being punished by God for what Adam did?  No… what does our text this morning explain?

[Therefore, just as through one man] v12b - sin entered into the world – Sin entered into the world… as a result of Adam’s rebellion.  Entered into the world.  That’s global.  We get so used to hearing the word sin and we know nothing of what the world was like before sin and so to just read that it almost doesn’t do justice to the horrendous turn of events that take place at the fall of man. 

Sin enters the world, God’s sin free creation, marred by this act of disobedience and the entrance of deception, and lies, and hate, and hurt, and suffering, and death… There is a universality to sin meaning that all people who have ever and will ever be born, will be affected by sin and they themselves are born with a sinful nature that inclines them to sin.

Sin is not a religious concept.  Sin is a universal reality… a global truth.  Even the atheist, the agnostic, the moral relativist who says that there is no such thing as absolute truth, on some level they have to admit to the existence of wicked things in this world.  But not about themselves of course…

Even some of us would be quick to throw a stone at someone else for a wicked act but we refuse to see our own sin.  But the global reality of it is that each one of us has sinned and the roots of it trace back to Adam.  Which is what Paul aims to show.

Now we need to note, before we move on that Paul very specifically says that sin ‘entered’ the world through Adam.  It entered the world.  Implying that sin already existed but not in the human realm.  Sin was not something God created when Adam disobeyed.  It already existed.  It must have already existed for Satan to rebel against God and be thrown out of Heaven.

1 John 3:8 tells us that Satan has sinned from the beginning.  “…the one who practices sin is of the devil; for the devil has sinned from the beginning. The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil.

So where did sin originate?  With Satan.  What is sin?  Anything that’s against God.  So at some point before Creation of the world, Satan rebelled.  That’s the origin of sin and then in Genesis 3 when Adam sinned and gave in to Satan’s temptation sin entered into the world through that act of disobedience.

That’s important because what we tend to do is blame God for sin.  ‘Well, God cursed us and that’s where sin comes from…’ and that folks just isn’t true.  Sin originated with Satan and entered when Adam, who represents the human race as the first human, sinned.

Sin entered the world.  Singular, not sins plural… we aren’t dealing with a specific sin here but rather the understanding that all sin of any kind is rebellion against God.

What enters the world is a sin nature.  The inherent propensity for unrighteousness.  Just as Adam passed on his physical nature to all mankind… all his descendants essentially… he also passed on his spiritual nature.

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