Sabbath, October 14, 2006
“Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins: And by him all that believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses.” Acts 13:38, 39.
“Through the Saviour’s sacrifice, communion with God is again made possible. We may not in person approach into His presence; in our sin we may not look upon His face; but we can behold Him and commune with Him in Jesus, the Saviour.” –Education, p. 28.
CONSEQUENCE OF TRANSGRESSION
1. How did sin enter the world, and what are its consequences?
Romans 5:12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.
“In consequence of Adam’s sin, death passed upon the whole human race. All alike go down into the grave.” –The Great Controversy, p. 544.
2. What may be said about Adam’s disobedience to God’s explicit command? If he was not deceived, what caused him to fall?
1 Timothy 2:14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.
“Adam understood that his companion had transgressed the command of God, disregarded the only prohibition laid upon them as a test of their fidelity and love. There was a terrible struggle in his mind. … Love, gratitude, loyalty to the Creator–all were overborne by love to Eve. … He resolved to share her fate; if she must die, he would die with her.” –Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 56.
OUR PUNISHMENT FELL UPON HIM
3. With whom is Adam contrasted?
1 Corinthians 15:21-22, 45- 47 For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive… And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven.
“Immortality, promised to man on condition of obedience, had been forfeited by transgression. Adam could not transmit to his posterity that which he did not possess; and there could have been no hope for the fallen race, had not God, by the sacrifice of his Son, brought immortality within their reach. While ‘death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned,’ Christ ‘hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.’ Romans 5:12; 2 Timothy 1:10. And only through Christ can immortality be obtained.” –The Great Controversy, p. 533.
“The first Adam fell; the second Adam held fast to God and His Word under the most trying circumstances, and His faith in His Father’s goodness, mercy, and love did not waver for one moment. (Letter 8, 1895).” –S.D.A. Bible Commentary, vol. 5, p. 1129.
“All that was lost by the first Adam will be restored by the second.” –The Adventist Home, p. 540.
4. How was this contrast explained further in Paul’s letter to the Romans?
Romans 5:15, 16, 18, 19 But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many. And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification… Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.
“The apostle contrasts the disobedience of Adam and the full, entire obedience of Christ. Think of what Christ’s obedience means to us! It means that in His strength we too may obey. Christ was a human being. He served His heavenly Father with all the strength of His human nature. He has a twofold nature, at once human and divine. He is both God and man.” –S.D.A. Bible Commentary, vol. 6, p. 1074.
THE EXISTENCE OF THE LAW BEFORE SIN
5. What must have already existed since Adam’s sin brought calamity to all mankind?
Romans 5:13 For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law.
1 John 3:4 Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.
“Before this earth was called into being, God’s law existed.” –Thoughts from the Mount of Blessing, p. 48.
“Adam and Eve, at their creation, had a knowledge of the law of God; they were acquainted with its claims upon them; its precepts were written upon their hearts.” –Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 363.
“God made man upright; He gave him noble traits of character, with no bias toward evil. He endowed him with high intellectual powers, and presented before him the strongest possible inducements to be true to his allegiance. Obedience, perfect and perpetual, was the condition of eternal happiness. On this condition he was to have access to the tree of life.” –Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 49.
6. What did the death of mankind from Adam to Moses prove?
Romans 5:14 Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come.
“Adam taught his descendants the law of God, and it was handed down from father to son through successive generations.” –Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 363.
THE POWER OF SIN
7. What effect does the law have upon sin?
Romans 5:20, first part – Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound.
8. Regardless of whether men consider it big or small, to what does every sin lead?
James 2:10 For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all.
Matthew 5:19 Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
“Had some great test been appointed Adam, then those whose hearts incline to evil would have excused themselves by saying, ‘This is a trivial matter, and God is not so particular about little things.’ And there would be continual transgression in things looked upon as small, and which pass unrebuked among men. But the Lord has made it evident that sin in any degree is offensive to Him. “To Eve it seemed a small thing to disobey God by tasting the fruit of the forbidden tree, and to tempt her husband also to transgress; but their sin opened the floodgates of woe upon the world. Who can know, in the moment of temptation, the terrible consequences that will result from one wrong step?” –Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 61.
• Am I aware of the result of only one transgression?
• Do I recognize, as Paul did, the magnitude of sin in light of the cross and, even more so, the power of grace?
• Do I let the weight of sin oppress me, or do I accept the offer of grace from God?