Part 3 of 25
God Points to “The Way” Home
Paul tells us how we are all genealogically related to the first man, Adam, having then inherited Adam’s infection - the Sin nature.
“…SIN CAME INTO THE WORLD THROUGH ONE MAN (ADAM), and DEATH AS THE RESULT OF SIN, SO DEATH SPREAD TO ALL MEN, [no one being able to stop it or to escape its power] because all men sinned.” (Romans 5:12 (AMP)
“Among these we as well as you once lived and conducted ourselves in the PASSIONS OF OUR FLESH [our behavior GOVERNED BY OUR CORRUPT AND SENSUAL NATURE], obeying the impulses of the flesh and the thoughts of the mind [our cravings dictated by our senses and our dark imaginings]. We were then BY NATURE children of [God’s] wrath and heirs of [His] indignation, like the rest of mankind. (Ephesians 2:3 (AMP)
These verses clearly indicate that every child born into the world since Adam possesses Adam's powerful Sin nature, with all of its ramifications; including corruption, darkness, pain and death. Mankind is lost. Parents sometimes wonder why their children act as they do. The answer is quite simple. Every child is related to rebellious Adam by their physical birth; sooner or later that fallen nature will become manifested.
Thankfully, every person who is alive today has not received what we all have justly deserved – the final judgment yet awaits the lost. “The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy” (Psa. 103:8). Mercy is when we do not get what we deserve – the judgment of God. Grace is when we receive blessing we did not deserve. God has extended mercy and grace to each of us.
God has made “a way” home for man. That way is “just” before our righteous God, satisfying His justice and also satisfying the longing of man’s soul. God desires to fulfill man’s desire and need in a way that only God could. Jesus said “I am the way….” God offers us the very life of the resurrected Christ to indwell us as the abiding answer for every need of our life.
Life does not pass easily for fallen mankind, lost in darkness, and lacking rest and peace in their souls. This is man’s condition until they personally meet God through His intervention in their lives. Thereby they may ultimately be brought to fellowship or union with God as He originally had intended for mankind (Eph 3:9-11).
Thankfully, while mankind is lost, God has put a homing device within the human spirit of each person. That device within man’s unfulfilled human spirit is instinctive; it generates a sense within man that something is missing, causing man to seek fulfillment. Man has a functioning conscience within his human spirit, as a lamp to his darkened soul. Proverbs 20:27 (NASB) The spirit of man is the lamp of the Lord, Searching all the innermost parts (the soul) of his being. God speaks into every man’s spirit to expose or reveal man’s need to that man, that He might draw that man to Himself (John 6:44).
In Scripture we are told that God made a way for fallen mankind to become justified and counted righteous. “(God)…commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (
5:8). Should we not be attracted to the One who cared so much for us that He would become human in order to die and redeem us? Rom.
“(Christ) made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: and being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross” (Phil. 2:7)
Having already seen man’s fallen Sin-infected condition, we must now realize that every person needs a change of nature at their core. Through natural birth we partake of the Sin nature that traces back to the federal head of all humanity, Adam. We all bear Adam’s imprint in the same way that we may have the same physical features as our birth-parents. How poignant it is to know that the Jesus of Nazareth took upon Himself “the likeness of men” as “the Son of man.” Thus, sinless as He was, He was able to shed His physical blood and die a physical death for our sins upon the cross of
Calvary. It was His love for sinful men, including us, that nailed and held Him to that cross. Jesus said of His human life “I it lay down of myself” (John 10:18).
When we recognize this truth of God’s love expressed at the cross, and we place our faith in Jesus Christ’s substitutionary death for us, and His as the new us resurrection, we are saved (Rom 10:9). It is then that a spiritual birth takes place in our spirit. We immediately become the literal “sons of God” (John 1:12; 1John 3:1). We are then born of God’s “seed” (Gk., sperma, 1Pet 1:23), “which is Jesus Christ” (Gal 3:16). By receiving God the Father’s “seed” we gain Christ’s literal “Spirit of life” (Rom 8:2a), which bears His very nature or Spirit-DNA (2Peter 1:4). With the deposit of Christ’s “Spirit of life” into our human spirit, we become members of “the body of Christ”; God's new creation on earth, “if any man be in Christ, he is a new creation” (2Cor. 5:17).
God then is so close to each believer, as He abides within then.
Colossians 1:26-27 Even the mystery (Gk., musterion, secret) which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints: 27 To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:
The indwelling Lord is able to comfort and console believers in the midst of their suffering life’s trials and tribulations. “(God) comforteth us in all our tribulation… (2Cor. 1:4).
2Corinthians 1:4-5 Who (God) comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. 5 For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ. 7 And our hope of you is stedfast, knowing, that as ye are partakers of the sufferings, so shall ye be also of the consolation.
Paul here is referring to the personal tribulations that he had encountered due to his poor health and spiritual conflicts at the hands of legalistic religion (see 2Cor 1:7-9). Personal trials come in all forms: criticism, rejection, financial setbacks, sickness, bereavement, etc. Here also of course, the Apostle Paul refers to “us,” the believers. Our heavenly Father knows that we are frail creatures of dust, oftentimes overwhelmed with sorrow, sickness and even death; not to mention the spiritual upheavals that come our way. Always sympathetic to our plight, He walks with us in every step of life's journey, comforting us in all our tribulations as we simply trust Him as our all. When sorrow overwhelms us, the Lord in His goodness is always present to comfort us in our time of need.
But exactly how does God comfort us in this day of “the dispensation of the grace of God?”
We know that today the heavens are silent and that neither the Lord nor any of His angelic host routinely visibly appears to minister to us today. After all, true “faith,” while substantive to the believer, often operates in the absence of things hoped for.
Today, during the “dispensation of the grace of God” (Acts 20:24), the Lord comforts us by the indwelling “Spirit of life in Christ Jesus,” which He has deposited within the human spirit of every rebirthed child of God. The indwelling “Spirit of Christ” is now our indwelling comforter (2Cor 3:17a).
John 14:18 I (Jesus) will not leave you comfortless: I (Jesus) will come to you.
John 16:33 These things I (Jesus) have spoken unto you, that in me (in union with me) ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation (Greek, thlipsis, pressure): but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.
The Spirit of the Lord is our abiding indwelling comforter, and He also our teacher (1John 2:20, 27). He may use such Scriptures as this above to speak words of guidance, comfort, and assurance to us as we recall them or as we read them. As we learn to endure sufferings by trusting Christ, then we can comfort and console others, as Paul does us here, by his words recorded in 2Cor 1:4-10.