“Nevertheless, death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those who did not sin in the likeness of Adam’s transgression. He is a prototype of the Coming One. But the gift is not like the trespass. For if by one man’s trespass the many died, how much more have the grace of God and the gift overflowed to the many by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ. And the gift is not like the one man’s sin, because from one sin came judgement, resulting in condemnation, but from many trespasses came the gift, resulting in justification. Since by the one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive the overflow of grace and the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ.” Romans 5:14-16,17 Holman Christian Standard Bible
Over the past 6 years I have watched a lot of television! Well, maybe listened is a better description of my activity as I lay in bed, the room spinning much of the time! One program was very interesting. I don’t recall the name of the series, but I do recall it was intriguing. Two successful inventors would travel to meet with an aspiring maker who would pitch their invention. Each budding inventor had a prototype of some kind they would show the program hosts. If the hosts were impressed they would set up a meeting with potential investors.
Everything rode on the pitch and the ability of the prototype to function as it was designed. As you would guess the designer was all about his prototype! It was interesting and painful to watch some episodes, especially those where the prototype failed. But those moments when the invention operated exactly as it was designed were amazing! Seeing the expressions on the faces of the creative hopefuls was priceless. Then came the difficult part, the pitch to the possible investor, because it was there everything the inventor had been building towards would either be realized or once more rejected.
I don’t know for sure about you, but I will hazard a guess, none of us likes rejection! However, it is easy to forget just how devastating rejection can be, because until we are the one experiencing it we have very short memories. In a way it makes sense. Why would we sit around obsessing over rejection? We would have to be out of our minds to do that, right? Well, I’m one of those who got caught in a time vortex for nearly 40 years. Every few years memories of rejection would come creeping back into my conscious mind reawakening all the pain I thought I’d left behind.
What just struck me was how we add to the pain of others when they are under the destructive power of rejection. Often we are unaware of the pain we have caused or are causing another person. At other times we are wickedly aware of what we are doing! It is in those moments we are at our most vulnerable to be destroyed by the enemy of God, because it is then we have strayed onto the territory of our most ancient enemy whose only bent is to destroy. Our destruction is the enemy’s ultimate goal. It is the only weapon left to him in his hatred of God and his desire to inflict as much pain on the Creator as is possible!
Adam is referred to as the prototype of the “Coming One”, and earth was where the prototype went wrong! Adam was originally created to be the steward of planet Earth with Eve as his completer-companion. Then it all fell apart as it was known it would. There is no way to create humanity or any being with the gift of free will and not anticipate the rebellion. Having created beings with the ability to enjoy freedom, the Creator had to anticipate there would one day inevitably arise the specter of rebellion.
The amazing difference between the fall of Adam and Eve and God’s response to the rebellion of man is legendary! It makes absolutely no sense to me that God would choose to respond in the way He has. This is where I need to face reality. Because along with Paul, too often I find myself doing things I know are not what God wants or desires for me. God’s response goes even further than that; His grace brings the gift of justification.
It is through this overflowing grace God provides the righteousness that reigns in our lives through the one man Jesus Christ! Think of it, two men separated by millennia and representing the two choices made by those who represented the prototype of this planet! The first Adam and the second Adam, each having significantly impacted the course of this earths history and future.
If there is one thing to take away from this it’s the understanding of God’s amazing love and grace. Because as we stand condemned through Adam and his choice to rebel separating us form the Life Giver, so does Jesus justify us through the offering of Himself in our place. It is through the overflow of God’s grace we become more than we are and enter the process of becoming all He desires.
“Since by the one man’s trespass death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive the overflow of grace and the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ!”
Enjoy the overflow of God’s Grace that makes everything different! We are called to joy because of God’s Grace overflowing in us. It is a paradigm shift away from the hopelessness with which the enemy tries to deceive us as he seeks to separate us from the One who gives us Life!
“And I heard every creature in heaven, on earth, in the world below, and in the sea—all living beings in the universe—and they were singing:
‘To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb,
be praise and honor, glory and might,
forever and ever!’” Revelation 5:13 Good News Translation