Bible Study: “Jesus is the Last Adam”

Bible Study: “Jesus is the Last Adam”


Jesus is the last Adam, who was born to overcome
what the first Adam brought into the world through his transgression. Every Thursday, I release a new Bible Study
that comes from The Gospel Project, where have been working chronologically through
the entire Bible to see how all of Scripture points to Jesus. We finished the Old Testament
last week, which means, yep, you got it, this week we start the New Testament. We will work
through these 27 books over the next year and a half. Before we get going, hit that subscribe button
and that bell so you never miss an episode. Also, I will ask you several questions throughout
the study. Drop your answers down in the comments. Alright, you ready? Let’s study the Bible. Sin is neither a popular word nor a topic
of conversation sought after by most, but the concept is important and affects everything
we see around us and within us. The primary word for sin in the New Testament has roots
as an archery term. 1 Sin is “missing the mark” of God’s holy standard; it is
anything less than perfection. As hard as we might try, we will never hit the bullseye
of God’s righteousness every time we act, speak, or think. But this assumes a genuine
desire to get it right in the first place. The reality of our sinful state is not that
we fail because we are incompetent; rather, we miss the mark because we usually aim at
the wrong target. Some of us have a hard time grasping the problem
of our sin and the proper rescue needed. We try so hard to get it right but find ourselves
looking at the wrong target—self-righteousness. Not only will our best performance continually
miss the mark, but the very attempt to save ourselves is also, in itself, offensive to
God (Isa. 64:6). Here’s a question for you to think about:
Why do you think we tend to downplay the severity of our sin problem and attempt to fix things
on our own? we are misguided and think we can fix it on
our own; we don’t like to admit we are broken and beyond our own means of repair; we don’t
understand or believe how deep our sin problem goes The first human being, Adam, was created by
God, placed in this world, and commissioned as an image-bearer of God. Adam initially
lived without the presence of sin and enjoyed the full presence of God, yet he failed to
remain pure. This resulted in the marring of God’s image within him and introduced
sin into the world, which brought death and condemnation to all humankind. Centuries later,
the Son of God, the last Adam, also entered this world pure. Yet Jesus succeeded in remaining
sinless. Christ not only rescued us from death and eternal separation from God, He also gifted
to us His perfect life of obedience. Now, in Christ, we stand before our holy God as
if we had lived that perfect life ourselves. Here is our first point. The Son of God came to overcome the
transgression of the first Adam (Luke 3:23,38; Rom. 5:12-15). Christians sometimes treat sin as if it were
a communicable disease: Just stay away from the sinful people, keep your hands clean,
do all the good churchy things, and you will end up “alright” in the end. But the reality
of our sin problem is much more dire than a seasonal cold. It is not something we simply
catch; it is part of our spiritual DNA from the moment of our conception (Ps. 51:5). Through the fall of our forefather Adam, we’ve
each inherited a nature broken and bent toward sin, and along with it, the penalty of death
that sin deserves. Humanity needs a new “Adam,” one neither compromised by nor predisposed
to sin, to deliver us from death and corruption and to restore our wholeness and integrity
as God’s image-bearers. Listen as I read Luke 3:23, 28 and Romans
5:12-15. Luke 3:23 Jesus, when he began his ministry,
was about thirty years of age, being the son (as was supposed) of Joseph, the son of Heli
… 38 the son of Enos, the son of Seth, the son of Adam, the son of God.
……………………………… 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
all sinned— 13 for sin indeed was in the world before the law was given, but sin is
not counted where there is no law. 14 Yet death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over
those whose sinning was not like the transgression of Adam, who was a type of the one who was
to come. 15 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. Think about this question: How does the biblical
view of sin and death compare to the world’s? if the world even thinks about sin, it is
something small and insignificant, whereas the Bible teaches sin is a deadly business,
an offense against our holy Creator God; the world sees death to be a natural part of the
cycle of life, but the Bible teaches that death is an unnatural consequence of sin;
sin is not just a personal thing but far bigger as it affects all of humanity because of our
one forefather Adam In the beginning of time and at the conclusion
of God’s work of creation, we get a peek into a divine discussion. God, who is one
God in three Persons, said, “Let us make man in our image,” and He did (Gen. 1:26-27).
Then God declared that all of His creation was very good (v. 31).
The Bible doesn’t record exactly how long it was this way, but for a period of time
all was indeed good, pure, and whole—so good that God was able to walk with Adam and
Eve in the garden (Gen. 3:8). The first humans lived in paradise and enjoyed the unhindered,
perfect presence of God. All His power, holiness, and splendor were on full display before all
of His creation, particularly within the garden of Eden and in His image-bearers. Until sin entered the scene, Adam and Eve
impeccably reflected God’s character and enjoyed God’s presence. But then paradise
was shattered with the fall of Adam. The perfect fellowship he and Eve enjoyed with their Creator
and each other was lost. Sin opened their eyes, hardened their hearts, and affected
all of humanity to come (Gen. 3). Because of sin, now every soul deserves God’s just
punishment—death and hell. Like a genetic mutation that leads to a fatal
flaw, every person now experiences both physical and spiritual death as a result of sin. We
no longer reflect the perfect image of God as we were originally intended to. This destruction of God’s imprint within
humankind through the introduction of sin was a deep offense to our holy God, who is
righteous and just and must always act rightly and administer perfect justice. Sin cannot
and will not go unpunished by God, and the punishment for sin is death (Gen. 2:16-17).
Paul made it clear that all have sinned, and now every soul deserves condemnation and the
punishment of death and hell (Rom. 3:23; 6:23). Check out this Essential Doctrine “Nature
of Hell”: For those who are not found in Christ at the time of their death, the Scriptures
say that God’s condemnation remains upon them (John 3:36) and that they will be judged
according to their deeds done on earth (Heb. 9:27). The punishment that awaits unbelievers
in hell is an eternal, never-ending suffering that comes from sins committed against an
infinite God (Matt. 25:41,46). In hell, sinners are forever separated from God. Here is our second point. The Son of God came to make the dead
alive (Rom. 5:16-17). The declarations of a legal system—“guilty”
or “not guilty”—hold great power over the lives of defendants, for good or for ill.
But the declarations God makes over us are always right. Regarding our own legal status
before God, we are all guilty; each of us deserves the penalty of death for our sin.
Yet through the gift of Christ’s righteousness and sacrifice, this ruling has been overturned.
By faith in Jesus, we have been declared “not guilty.” Listen as I read Romans 5:16-17. 16 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. 17 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. Christ came to overcome the destruction from
Adam, both in terms of our guilt and our corruption. The condemnation for our guilt as sinners
must be corrected first through justification, our being declared to be in a right legal
standing with God. By this declaration, God imputes our sin and guilt to Christ and His
righteousness to us. Yet our diseased spiritual DNA must be fixed through a spiritual transfusion
of sorts, namely, through the Spirit-led process of renewal and change known as sanctification. Justification is a permanent, once-for-all
declaration of righteousness. Sanctification is an ongoing work by which
the Holy Spirit transforms us and makes us more and more righteous in our person, more
and more like Jesus. The good news of the gospel is that God grants
both justification and sanctification to anyone and everyone who believes on Christ, the second
and last Adam. The first Adam entered this world without
the presence of sin yet failed to remain sinless. The last Adam, however, entered this world
holy and succeeded, allowing Him to make what theologians call, with reference to the doctrine
of justification, “the Great Exchange”: Jesus took on our sin, guilt, and condemnation,
surrendering Himself to the death penalty we deserve, and we, by faith, receive His
perfect righteousness He achieved through His obedience to His Father. Through the shedding
of His sinless, life-giving blood, the Messiah provides spiritual restoration to all who
accept His gift of grace. Check out this Essential Doctrine “Imputation”:
When God pardoned sinners at the cross, our sins were imputed, or transferred, to Christ,
who became sin on our behalf. Our sin was imputed to Christ, and Christ’s righteousness
was imputed to us (Rom. 5:17; 1 Cor. 1:30). When God the Father looks at those who have
trusted in Christ, He does not see their sins but the righteousness of Christ as belonging
to them (Rom. 4:6). Through Christ we now have a choice: continue
identifying with the first Adam or become united by faith with the last Adam. We either
continue on with the guilt and condemnation that come with affirming Adam’s sinful choice
by our own sinful choices or we repent and accept the righteous imputation of Christ
that brings eternal life. Jesus’ sacrifice in the place of sinners means the presence,
peace, power, and perfection of Christ may now become an inseparable part of who we are
because we are in Him and He is in us. Listen to this quote: “When God looks upon
the human race, He sees but two men—Adam and Christ. Every human being is either ‘in
Adam’ and lost, or ‘in Christ’ and saved; there is no middle ground.” Here’s kind of a personal question for you:
How have you experienced the blessings and benefits of being in Christ by faith? Drop your answer in the comments. Here’s our last point. The Son of God came to make sinners
righteous (Rom. 5:18-21). Scientists have discovered that cancer cells
ultimately stem from damaged DNA, causing what were once normal, healthy cell processes
to become rogue and potentially deadly. 3 In the case of Leukemia, a bad blood cell
line takes over and crowds out the healthy cells we need to stay alive. A doctor might
prescribe a stem cell transplant after chemotherapy and radiation to try to eradicate the damaged
cells. A transfusion of healthy stem cells, the precursors of all cells, may repair bone
marrow and bring new life to the body and blood. Before the transplant, the circulating
blood cells were doomed to bring about death. After a successful transfusion and treatment,
the new life-giving donor cells displace the weakened, death-causing cancer cells and hope
for life is restored. The worst of all maladies—an incurable corruption
of our spiritual DNA—is inherent to all humankind. Like an invasive cancer, the corruption
of Adam brought death to human beings. But like a life-giving transplant, the grace of
God brings life. Through the gift of Christ, God has provided a rescue out of our rotten
destiny. Listen as I read Romans 5:18-21. 18 Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation
for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men. 19
For as by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s
obedience the many will be made righteous. 20 Now the law came in to increase the trespass,
but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, 21 so that, as sin reigned in death,
grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ
our Lord. Jesus took our sins upon Himself and gave
us His righteousness—all so God could declare “not guilty” over us (2 Cor. 5:21). Now
when God looks upon us, if we are in Christ, He sees us just as if we had never sinned.
This is the depth of our justification before the Father that the Son earned on our behalf. But more than just our justification—being
declared righteous—Jesus has done all that is necessary for our sanctification—being
made righteous (2 Pet. 1:3). He has saved us and given us His Spirit. We’ve been called
to live out the holiness of God through displaying the righteousness of Christ, and we’ve been
given the Holy Spirit to strengthen and guide us on this journey. Our new inward identities
in Christ are to become outward realities in obedience so we display the glory of our
great God of grace. Think about this: What is the difference between
a gospel view of sanctification and rules-based approach?
a rules-based approach to sanctification leaves the power for spiritual growth in our hands
alone, a power that we don’t have; a gospel view of sanctification recognizes the work
of the Holy Spirit in our lives to make us more like Jesus; a gospel view of sanctification
makes our actions a response of faith, humility, and gratitude for what Jesus has done for
us, whereas a rules-based approach makes our actions at best the product of duty and at
worst the product of pride; a rules-based approach focuses primarily if not exclusively
on external works and appearance, but a gospel view of sanctification addresses the heart
behind our actions as well Though the fall of Adam held dire consequences
for us all, there is great hope for humankind through Christ. As promised long ago, God
came to earth in Jesus the Messiah to deliver His people from bondage. Though God’s justice
was satisfied through the death of Christ for our sin, He moved way beyond this act
of mercy and lavished upon us His gifts of grace. All who receive the righteousness of
Christ are given freedom from the chains and condemnation of sin and will spend eternity
with their Savior. Because we have been forgiven of our sin through
Christ and have been given His righteousness, we proclaim Jesus as the long-awaited offspring
of Adam, in whom alone salvation is found. It’s time for you to apply God’s Word
to your life. Choose at least one of these to focus on this week. •What steps of faith will you take because
God declares and makes sinners righteous on account of Jesus? •How can your church help one another to
“show off” the righteousness of Christ in your community? •With whom will you share the good news
that Jesus came to overcome our sin problem and give us eternal life? Check out this quote: “Paul speaks of an
abundance of grace to show that what we have received is not just a medicine sufficient
to heal the wound of sin, but also health and beauty and honor, and glory and dignity
far transcending our natural state … There is not a trace of death left, nor can any
shadow of it be seen, so entirely has it been done away with.” Pray with me. Father, we have sinned against You both in
Adam and in our own actions. Despite our being rightfully condemned in the first Adam, we
offer thanks and praise to You for appointing a second and last Adam—Jesus—in whom we
are justified before You because of His complete obedience. Compel us through the Holy Spirit
to point others to the abundant grace, eternal life, and perfect righteousness found in Jesus
Christ, our Lord. Amen. Remember that Jesus is the last Adam, who
was born to overcome what the first Adam brought into the world through his transgression. It’s been said that, “God loves you just
the way you are, but he refuses to leave you that way.” God loved you so much that He
sent his son to live the perfect life you couldn’t live, to die the sinner’s death
you deserve, and he defeated sin and death by rising from the grave. Put your faith and
trust in Jesus today.” Shoot me at DM if you want to chat about what it means to give
your life to jesus. Hit that thumbs up button if you enjoyed this
study. Also, subscribe to this channel so you can walk through the Bible with me. To learn more about the church I pastor, Central
Baptist Church, visit cbcmaysville.com. Lord willing, I will see you next week. God bless.

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