(20.) On Christ as the Last Adam

(20.) On Christ as the Last Adam

(20.) On Christ as the Last Adam.

“The Scriptures tell us, ‘The first man – Adam – became a living person.’ But the Last Adam – that is, Christ – is a life-giving Spirit.” (1 Corinthians 15:45).

There are two representatives of humanity: Adam and Jesus. Adam was born of the earth. Jesus was also of dust, but is not merely dust. He was conceived by the Holy Spirit in the body of a woman, born of both earth and heaven. Unlike Adam, Jesus is fully man and fully God, and is somehow 100% human and divine. All of humanity is spiritually related to one of these two spokesmen. Our destiny hinges on our relationship to these two men. Adam sinned, Jesus saved. Adam is the one into whom we are all naturally born. Jesus is the One through whom we can be supernaturally reborn. Adam inaugurated the old human race. Jesus ended Adam’s race and inaugurated a new spiritual species. Adam was the old creation, Jesus is the new creation, able to remake people into a new spiritual humanity.

Jesus’ representative obedience overcomes Adam’s representative disobedience.   Adam’s family line leads to spiritual death, and leaves an inheritance of guilt, a sinful nature, and God’s judgment. Jesus’ family line leads to life and leaves an inheritance of forgiveness, a new nature, and God’s salvation. Adam’s failure was reversed by Christ’s victory. Christ’s righteousness is more powerful that Adam’s sinfulness. Grace is more powerful than sin. Adam’s inheritance of sin was no match for grace, and his inheritance of death was proved powerless against eternal life.

By Adam’s offense, all have been condemned. That one man’s disobedience left an inheritance of fallenness, a tendency to sin. But Jesus’ righteous obedience left an inheritance of transformation, a free gift from God. Sin reigned through Adam. Purity reigns through Jesus. Adam was created in the image of God, but he tainted it through sin. Jesus redeemed humanity by retaining a perfect image of God, an untainted image.

Both of humanity’s representatives were tempted by the evil one. Adam’s fall seemed unlikely, since He was tempted while strong, in a garden paradise, a wholesome environment. Jesus’s victory was also rather unlikely, because He was tempted while weak, in a barren wilderness. Adam yielded to temptation while in an innocent world. Jesus refused to yield to temptation while in a sinful world.  Jesus’ spiritual strength proved to be the answer to Adam’s spiritual weakness. The human sin dilemma was solved, and Jesus solved it. The Last Adam undid the damage from the first Adam. The first Adam took the fruit from the Tree, and fell hard. Jesus elevated the race of Adam by reaching out to another Tree, the Cross. Through his sinful disobedience, Adam allowed the devil free reign in his life. Through His righteous obedience, Jesus bound the strong man once and for all. In the beginning, Christ co-created Adam. In the fullness of time, He recreated Adam into a new humanity. The Last Adam is the only Adam we’ll need to know.

One Reply to “(20.) On Christ as the Last Adam”

  1. Yes! Amen! Beautiful! I love that you emphasize that JESUS and everything He did is GREATER!! The comparison between first and last Adam in Romans 5 is I believe one of the most important chapters in all of Scripture.