Part 2

The Old Creation


In order to understand our new identity as new creatures in Christ, perhaps we should start with Adam and the “old things” of which we once were a part.

Paul sets forth the story of the old creation in Romans 5 by beginning where the Bible begins, with “the first man Adam”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.” (Romans 5:12-14)

What went wrong with the old creation is that the first man, Adam, sinned. Paul mentions this in almost every following verse.

15 … through the offence of one (Adam) many be dead…

16it was by one that sinned (Adam), so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation….

17 …by one man's offence (Adam’s) death reigned by one…

18…by the offence of one (Adam) judgment came upon all men to condemnation…

19…by one man's disobedience (Adam’s) many were made sinners… (Romans 5:15-19)

Every person born into the world is “in Adam.” Thus the whole race was affected by Adam’s sin. Paul identifies at least three results that we all inherit from Adam.

18Therefore as by the offence of one (Adam’s) judgment came upon all men to condemnation

19 For as by one man's disobedience (Adam’s) many were made sinners

21That as sin hath reigned unto death… (Romans 5:18, 19, 21)

“Condemnation,” “death,” “made sinners – that’s what we received from Adam. We are born with the same fallen “nature” (Eph 2:3) and destiny that Adam possessed after the fall.

Every grave marker in every cemetery is a testimony that God’s Word is true. Because all of us have a Sin nature and have sinned, death works in us all unto death. “Death reigns” as a king over the old creation. And this is more than simply physical death, for Revelations 21:8 declares:

“But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is THE SECOND DEATH.” (Revelation 21:8)

There is a death after physical death called “the second death.”

Adam’s legacy is that in our very nature we are sinners. We sin because we are sinners – it’s our nature to do so. We are its slave. Perhaps not murder, but who has not lied, stolen, been angry, bitter, deceived, or perhaps murdered someone’s reputation? Get caught speeding once and you’re a speeder, likewise with sin. We sin more than we realize, by nature. The testimony of Scripture is clear: we are “the servants of Sin” (Rom 6:17). In John 8:34 Jesus declares: Jesus answered them, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin.”

Sin has come and gripped us so tightly that it runs all of the old creation. Selfishness, anger, lying, self-centeredness, lust, stealing, malice, bitterness, greed, evil thoughts, pride – make your own list. The Bible calls it sin and it so dominates the old creation that these are thought of as “normal” human behavior. People do them all the time. We don’t think anything of it because “that’s the way people are.”