How Did We All Become Sinful?
By Matthew Black, Pastor
Text: Romans 5:12-21
Date: Wednesday, April 15, 2009, 7pm
Tabernacle Baptist Church
7020 Barrington Road
Hanover Park, Illinois 60133
Introduction: Open your Bible to the book Romans 5. The title of this evening’s message is “How Did We All Become Sinful?”. Last week we were in Ephesians 2 which states that all people are “by nature children of wrath”. I told you this week we would deal with man being fallen by nature. By nature man does things that provoke the wrath of God. How did this happened? It happened when Adam sinned and brought the whole human race into condemnation. Let us read in Romans 5:12-21.
Romans 5:12-21, “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: 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 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. 15 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. 16 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. 17 For if by one man’s offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.) 18 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. 19 For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous. 20 Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound: 21 That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.”
[Prayer for Guidance]
The purpose of this chapter is to show that all people in the entire human race are sinners under the condemnation of God and can only be justified through the righteousness of Jesus Christ. Paul just spent chapters 3 and 4 of Romans showing how we cannot be justified through the law, but must come through faith in Jesus Christ.
In this chapter we have TWO races of people: those IN ADAM and those IN CHRIST. Verse 14 says that Adam “is the figure of him that was to come”. Adam is a type, a pattern, an example, a prefiguring and foreshadowing of Christ. Verse 15 says that Christ is the exact opposite of Christ. All those in Adam are condemned in sin to eternal death. All those in Christ are set free from sin and given eternal life.
HOW DID ALL THIS HAPPEN?
I. First we have to look at the ROOTS of sinful humanity. “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” (verse 12).
As a result: we all come under the curse of Adam’s sin. Sin entered into the human race “by one man”, Adam. Evil had already existed with Satan. Lucifer was not content to be the "anointed cherub that covereth", (Ezekiel 28:11-15). But sin entered you and I through Adam.
Adam chose to sin and that is how sin entered into the entire human family. He had been created in the very image of God. He had been placed in a perfect environment, with a perfect wife. He ruled in a perfect world. There was only one restriction on Adam. He was forbidden to eat the fruit of one tree in the Garden of Eden, Genesis 2:15-17. Adam ate of the forbidden fruit from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Genesis 2:17, “But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.” Adam died spiritually, and he began to die physically through the aging process. Adam eventually died.
The moment Adam sinned as been termed by theologians and "The Fall". Sadly, Adam's fall did not just affect Adam, but it affected the whole world! It was as if Adam was driving the bus of humanity. When he drove the bus off the cliff, we went with him. “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” (verse 12).
II. Second at the RESULT of sin. ““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”.
The obvious result of Adam’s sin is that the sinful people that are born into his race ALL DIE.
A. Spiritual Death - This is the natural state of all humanity as they are born into this world. Spiritual death is in reality being separated from God, Ephesians 2:1-2; 4:18.
B. Physical Death - This is the place all humans come to, when these temporal, earthly bodies are laid aside, Hebrews 9:27, “It is appointed unto man once to die, and after this the judgment”.
Verses 14 and 17 tell us that “death reigned” through Adam. It has ruled all men. All men die. When sin entered into the world, “death passed upon all men”. Because of Adam every one in the human race will die. The proof that they themselves are guilty of death is “for that all have sinned” (verse 12b).
C. Eternal Death - This is also known as "the second death". It refers not only to eternal separation from the presence of God, 2 Thessalonians 1:8-9; but also of eternal torment in the Lake of Fire, Revelation 20:14-15. It is the ultimate doom of every person who is not saved by the grace of God.
III. The REALITY of sin. Verse 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”.
A. As a result of Adam’s sin, all of Adam’s descendents are born with a sinful nature. Verse 19 says that all people are “made sinners”. All people sin because they are sinners. We were all “made sinners” because of Adam’s sin (“by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners” –verse 19). We are all therefore “by nature children of wrath” (Ephesians 2:3). All of Scripture confirms this. Let’s go on a journey through several verses.
Psalm 58:3, “The wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as soon as they be born, speaking lies.”
Romans 5:12 tells us that “death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned”. Why do all men sin? —Because “by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners” –verse 19. All sin and all the results of sin can be traced back to one moment in time when Adam, the first man, sinned against God.
Man is born in the flesh, unclean, with a sinful nature from birth.
Job asks the question in Job 14:4, “Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? not one.” He wondered how anything clean could come out of him. He recognized his depravity.
He goes on in Job 15:14, “What is man, that he should be clean? and he which is born of a woman, that he should be righteous?”
Job 25:4, “How then can man be justified with God? or how can he be clean that is born of a woman?” This question is answered in Romans 5! A man that is dead in sin and by nature a child of wrath can be justified by faith in Jesus Christ.
B. Since all men have a sinful nature, therefore all men are sinners. Ecclesiastes 7:20, “For there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not.”
Job says of God, “Behold, he putteth no trust in his saints; yea, the heavens are not clean in his sight. 16 How much more abominable and filthy is man, which drinketh iniquity like water?” (Job 15:15-16).
Romans 3:10-12, “As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one: 11 There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God. 12 They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.”
IV. The Representative of sin.
What is the death of people based on? Sin. Whose sin? Certainly their own. Certainly all have sinned. But there was a time when men did not have the law. Listen to verse 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 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.”
So sin is not imputed to those who have no law, and yet people still died. People were guilty. Why?
1. Certainly breaking of the Ten Commandments (the law) establishes sin, but—many died before that law was given. That came at Moses.
2. Certainly, once a person reaches the age of accountability they are guilty of breaking of the Law of Conscience—Of course all men are justly guilty because of the Law of Conscience (Romans 2:14-15, “For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves: 15 Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another”).
3. Guilt because of the Condemnation of Adam’s sin. On the account of one man’s sin, many die. They are condemned to death. “The soul that sinneth, it shall die”. To establish that all men are guilty of Adam’s sin, Paul says that you cannot be guilty unless a law has been broken. Romans 5:13, “For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not imputed when there is no law.” (Cf. Romans 4:15, “Because the law worketh wrath: for where no law is, there is no transgression.”
What law have infants broken? The answer: They are guilty in Adam! Many infants die without breaking the Law of the Ten Commandments written on their heart. The Bible is clear that all are sinners. But there are those who sinned before God’s Law was given, and they died. Certainly infants are sinful and selfish and prone to sin, but they die because of Adam’s sin.
V. The Remedy for sin. Romans 5:15-19 teaches that Adam is the head of the human race and that Christ is the Head of the new humanity. As 1 Corinthians 15:22 says, “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.”
A. All who are in Adam die. They are all under the just condemnation and judgment of the Lord. Consider verses 15-19.
B. All who are in Christ are made alive!! Consider what a great Saviour we have. 1 Corinthians 15:22, “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.” As awful as Adam’s act of sin was, Christ’s act of GRACE was infinitely GREATER!!! 1 Corinthians 15:45, “The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit”.
Conclusion: In closing I want us to see The Magnifier of sin and grace. Verses 20-21, “Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound”. To make sin even more sinful in our own eyes, God brought the Law. Look into the Law and let the mountain of your sin pile up.
Then look at Jesus Christ. Verse 21, “That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.” We are mighty sinners, but we have an even mightier Saviour!!
When Adam sinned, it set forth the spectacular response to the amazingly devastating consequences of that first sin.
THE TWO MEN
THE TWO ACTS
Adam—one trespass: verses 12, 15, 17, 18, 19
Christ—one righteous act (on the Cross): verse 18
THE TWO RESULTS
By Adam—Condemnation, guilt, death, verses 15, 16, 18, 19
By Christ—Justification, life, kingship: verses 17, 18, 19