HOW PARADISE WAS REGAINED
Intro: In our last study from Romans, we talked about
how paradise was lost. We learned that Adam, the
father of all humanity, sinned against God. As a result
of his sin, the whole world was plunged into darkness.
Adam's sin had dire consequences for the whole of
humanity. As we move on in this chapter, we will see
here how paradise is regained. What Adam gave away,
Jesus bought back!
This passage is very difficult to understand. When
it is read, it seems very confusing and fuzzy. This
makes these verses extremely hard to outline.
However, it may help to look at this passage as a series
of contrasts. Paul is trying to show his readers the
difference between what they received from Adam and
what they have received from Jesus Christ.
There are three great contrasts that are mentioned
here. For me, they untangle these verses and make
their teaching clear. I would like to share them with you
this evening. I do want to say that these verse
comprise the central theme of the book of Romans.
Everything to this point has been working towards this,
and everything after this point works away from this.
The whole point is that where Adam failed, Christ
prevailed! What we lost in Adam, we get back, and
much more, in Jesus.
Let's take some time this evening to look at three
contrasts that are presented in these verse as we
discover how Paradise Was Regained.
I. TWO PEOPLE ARE CONTRASTED
(Ill. To help us see this thing a little clearer, it might
be helpful to know that of the forty billion people who
have lived in this world, God looks at humanity and
sees us in our relationship to only two men: Adam
and Jesus. This is the essence of Romans 5:15-21! You see, Adam did something back in the
Garden of Eden that affected the entire human race.
Jesus also did something on the cross that affected
the whole of humanity. Therefore it doesn't really
matter if you know who Daniel is. It doesn't matter
if you know about Moses or Mesopotamia, or
Babylon or the Medes and Persians. It doesn't
matter how much you know about the intricate
history of the Bible. Now, all these things are
important and you should take the time to learn
them all. However, to get a grasp of the whole of
the Bible, just remember that it all boils down to two
men: Adam and Jesus! You also need to know that
you are in one or the other this evening. To be in
Adam is to be a partaker of all his gifts to humanity.
To be in Christ is to be a partaker of all He had to
give. It is important to understand the difference
between these two men and their contributions to
the human race. Let's notice what Paul reveals
about them in these verses.)
A. Adam The Sinner - Verse 19 tells us that Adam
was "disobedient". This means that Adam went
against the command of God and committed a
sin! Verse 15 tells us that Adam committed an
"offence". That is, he crossed a line that God
had drawn, Gen. 2:17. When Adam sinned, his
sin did not just affect him, it also affected you and
me, Romans 5:12. So, we see that Adam the
Sinner transgressed against the Lord and brought
sin to every human being.
B. Jesus The Savior - Verse 19 tells us that Jesus
acted differently than Adam. While Adam
disobeyed, Jesus obeyed the Father and gave
His life a ransom for sin. This is made clear in
Phil. 2:5-11. While Adam brought sin to all of
humanity, the death of Jesus on the cross
opened the door of salvation to "whosoever
will", Rev. 22:17.)
(Ill. The contrast between the first Adam and the
second Adam must not be missed! Everything
we lost in the first Adam was regained by the
second Adam. Everything Adam gave away in
the Garden, Jesus purchased back on the cross!
Verse 15 tells us that what Jesus did was "much
more" than what Adam did! You see, Adam
sinned one sin and it brought death to all men.
Jesus died one death and it brought the
possibility of life to all! In a real, mysterious
sense, when Jesus dies on the cross, His blood
paid for all the sins of all men who have ever, or
who will ever live. Of course, this only becomes
effective for those who exercise faith in Jesus and
believe unto salvation. 1 Cor. 15:22 says, "For
as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all
be made alive." I think the difference in what
these two men accomplished is very clear!)
I. Two People Are Contrasted
II. TWO PROGRAMS ARE CONTRASTED
A. The Program Of Judgment And Death - Verse
15 tells us that because of Adam's sin "many be
dead". This thought is carried even farther in
verses 16-18. Here, the Apostle Paul tells us
that because Adam sinned, every man is doomed
to die. Not only that, but all men are also
condemned. This means that we all stand under
the wrath of God, Eph. 2:1-4; John 3:36. The
bottom line is that the end result of Adam's
trespass in the Garden is an eternity in Hell for all
men! This is a horrible thing, but it is nonetheless
true! It is bad enough to be condemned, but
verse 20 tells us that because the Law was
given, we can see how wicked we are. Men were
sinners already by nature, but when the Law
came, it added specific transgressions. Now,
men have the ability to look into the perfect Law
of God and see just how wrong they really are.
The Law, like a great mirror, points out every
imperfection and displays all of our wretchedness
in glaring detail, James 1:22-25.
(Ill. This is the program that all men are under in
their natural state. It matters not how important
or wealthy they are. It matters not how intelligent
they are. It matter not what they believe. If they
are outside of a relationship with the Lord Jesus
Christ, then they are already dead in sins, Eph.
2:1, and they are headed to eternal death in the
lake of fire, Rev. 20:11-15. This is a terrible
condition to be in this evening! However, millions
all around us are lost and headed to Hell. They
are living under the program of Judgment and
B. The Program Of Justification And Life - By
contrast, the same verses tell us that Jesus offers
a far different program! While the sin of Adam
brings death, devastation and damnation; the gift
of Jesus Christ brings, life, liberty and luxury!
What a difference Jesus makes! In Adam, we
are judged. In Christ, we are justified! In Adam
we die. In Jesus we live! In Adam we face the
wrath of God. In Jesus we enjoy the love of God!
In Adam we burn. In Christ we reign! I Adam
we are the servants of sin and Satan. In Jesus
Christ, we are the Sons of God! Can you see the
contrast? Notice again, Eph. 2:1-4! It is being in
Jesus that makes all the difference in life!
(Ill. Notice verse 20. Paul tells us that the lost
sinner is under a mountain of sin! He tells us that
sin abounded. This word means "to abound in
abundance." In other words, there was a pile of
sins and they were all pressing us under their
weight. Eventually, these sins would take our
lives and we would be destroyed. However, look
at the contrast! Paul tells us that where that
mountain of sin existed, grace did abound. He
uses a different word here. This word "abound"
means "to abound above measure; to
overflow." The first word speaks of addition.
One sin was added to another. The second word
speaks of multiplication. God's grace was
multiplied over and over again! Simply stated,
once we were being crushed under a mountain of
sin, now, in Jesus, we stand on a mountain of
grace! Yes, sin abounded, but grace super-abounded!
Certainly sin is a problem! After all, men die
from it and go to Hell because of it. However, as
extensive as sin is, there is far more grace
available to over come it. Thank God there is a
difference between Jesus and Adam! Can you
see the difference?)
I. Two People Are Contrasted
II. Two Programs Are Contrasted
III. TWO POSSIBILITIES ARE CONTRASTED
A. The Possibility Of Condemnation - verse 21a
deals with the first possibility. If a person
chooses to reject the free offer of eternal life and
forgiveness through the Lord Jesus Christ, then
that person will be condemned by God. Verses
16 and 18 all tell us the same thing. To refuse to
come to Jesus is to choose to remain in death
and it is to choose to go to Hell!
B. The Possibility Of Conversion - Verse 21b tells
us that there is also the possibility of salvation. If
a lost sinner will simply trust Jesus Christ by faith,
he will be saved and justified by the blood of the
Lamb. This person will go to Heaven when he
leaves this world.
(Ill. It is very easy to see that Jesus makes a
difference! Which of these two possibilities is
true for you all depends on who you are in: Jesus
or Adam. If you are in Adam, then you are going
to Hell. There is nothing else for you but
judgment and wrath. However, if you have
trusted Christ and are in Him, you have passed
from death unto life, John 5:24, there is nothing
for you but eternal life and a home in Heaven.
The question that must be faced is: who are you
in tonight? Which matters very much.)
Conc: I want to say that I like what Jesus gave us far
more than I like what Adam gave us. My friends, have
you gotten out from under Sin Mountain? Do you stand
on Mount Grace this evening? Does the truth of these
verse reverberate in your spirit tonight? Do you know
that you have traded families?
You see, according to this passage, all those in
Adam are under the reign of death, v. 17. That is a sad
thing! However, by contrast, all those who are in Jesus
reign in grace, v. 17. One of two things is true about
you this evening. Either you are a slave to death, or
you have been raised from death and made a king in
Christ. Which is it? After all, we are all just made men!
Look at verse 19. Either we are made sinners by being
in Adam, or we are made saints by being in Jesus
Christ! Which is true concerning you this evening?