The Bible Answers Short Questions From Our Readers
Plain Truth Staff
Romans 5:12 says, "Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men...." Does this mean we are guilty of Adam's sin? Must WE also pay the penalty for his sin?
When God created the physical earth and placed man upon it, He had created a PERFECT PHYSICAL CREATION! Adam had DIRECT contact with the Creator and Ruler of this universe! He had the potential, if he would have obeyed God, to receive eternal life. He had the RESPONSIBILITY of passing on the knowledge and opportunities he had to his children and grandchildren. But Adam and Eve were tempted as God reveals in Genesis 3 — both he and his wife DISOBEYED God — they sinned. They were driven from the Garden of Eden. By sinning, they CUT THEMSELVES OFF from the guidance, authority and knowledge of God (Gen. 3:24). Adam not only cut himself off — HE WAS RESPONSIBLE FOR CUTTING HIS CHILDREN OFF — from the help and instruction of God. Even his own son became a murderer (Gen. 4:8). Man no longer had the opportunity to have God's complete help and instruction through direct contact which he so desperately needs. By the time of the Flood, the earth was filled with sin and evil (Gen. 6:5). The root cause was because man had been cut off from God. ADAM WAS ORIGINALLY RESPONSIBLE FOR CUTTING MAN OFF FROM GOD! So Adam's sin was unique in that it was the first human sin — and it was he who cut man off from God. Now let's read Romans 5:12 again, "Wherefore, as by one man [Adam] sin ENTERED INTO THE WORLD, and death by sin." Adam introduced sin into the world among human beings — he was the first human being to sin. But notice, carefully! Sin was introduced into the WORLD — NOT into the nature of man! We have not been forced to sin because Adam sinned! As a result of Adam's sin, he died — paying the penalty for that sin (Rom. 6:23). In that way, he was also the first to pay the death penalty for sin — and INTRODUCED death by sin into the world! Continuing Romans 5:12, "And so death passed upon all men.... " But why? Do we all have to die because Adam sinned? No! Notice the latter part of this verse again, "So death passed upon all men" — Why? — "FOR THAT ALL HAVE SINNED!" That is why WE DIE — because all of us have sinned. As a result, we have incurred the death penalty ON OURSELVES! Adam paid for his sin! We pay for OUR sin. Adam had carnal human nature just the same as we have a carnal human nature. With this type of nature it is IMPOSSIBLE TO OBEY GOD (Rom. 8: 7). Adam was created with this nature which is hostile to God — the fact that he was tempted and sinned proved it! We too have this same carnal nature because we are all the children of Adam. It was nor because he sinned — but because he was able to reproduce himself and populate the earth as God had instructed him to do. He could produce only children with characteristics and a nature similar to his — just as today our children look like us — and even grow up with many of the characteristics and abilities we have as parents. It takes the love — the mind — of God, directing our thoughts, to obey His law. Adam did not have this love. He cut himself off from the opportunity of having it at that time. We read in Galatians 2:20, that it is the mind — the spiritual heredity we receive of Christ, which unites with our will. It is the mind of Christ IN US which causes us to obey God's law. Adam did not have this mind! We are born without this power to obey God. We must cry out for the power and the mind that will obey His law — and we can receive it (Rom. 7:24, 25)! It is through God'! Holy Spirit that we can OVERCOME this carnal human nature and ultimately — by God's grace — enter into the Kingdom of God. If you have not yet read our article "How to Be an Overcomer!" write for it immediately and we will have it sent by return mail FREE of charge.