Who Is the Second Adam?
Tom: Verse 15 of Romans, chapter 5: “But not as the offense, so also is the free gift. [In other words, the gift is not like Adam’s sin.] For if through the offense 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.”
Dave: Well, that relates back to verse 14, which we looked at a week ago. It talks about Adam being the figure of Him that was to come.
Dave: That doesn’t mean that Adam, of course, was our redeemer. He’s the one through whom sin came and death came. So, in a sense, Christ, you could say, is the opposite of him.
Tom: Right. Because Adam was the first of the race.
Dave: That’s right. And Jesus is called the Last Adam. He’s called the Second Man. There was never a man from Adam until Christ who deserved to me called “Man”— who was man as God intended man to be. So, Christ is called the Second Man—this is 1 Corinthians 15. He’s the only one who deserved to be called a man since Adam. And, of course, He is perfect, created fresh from the hand of God in the womb of a virgin, just as Adam was created fresh from the hand of God out of the dust of the ground. And then, Christ is called “The last Adam.” The Bible is very precise in its language.
So, Christ is the progenitor of a new race. So, that’s how Adam is like Christ. Just as Adam was the progenitor of the original race of mankind, so Christ is the progenitor of a new race. And those of us who put our faith in Christ—there’s nothing we can do. There’s no way that we can make ourselves a new race. We can’t turn over a new leaf, and so forth. That won’t do it. There has to be a complete transformation—a re-creation. So the Bible calls us “new creatures” in Christ Jesus. Ephesians:2:10 says, “We are created in Christ Jesus.” Well, I think we ought to give the whole 8-10: “For by grace are ye saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it’s the gift of God, not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.
So, it is so wonderful, what God wants to do for us, by His grace. It’s a gift. And we’ve discussed that in the past.
Tom: At the beginning of this verse, you said that God had to put us to death—this race. What do you mean by that?
Dave: Well, there was a sword that kept the way to the Tree of Life when man was cast out of the garden. We fled from that sword, and, of course, today, it is very popular to complain against the death penalty, and they’ve tried to do away with it, and so forth: “it’s unjust.” And we fled from that sword. God is saying—He’s not vindictive—He’s saying, “Look, there is no way to get to the Tree of Life. There’s no way for a man to have eternal life except by passing the sword of judgment. And we fled it. And one day a man walked up to it—the second Man, the last Adam. He took (that’s Jesus Christ)—He took that sword of God’s judgment in His heart for us. He died for our sins. He payed the penalty that His own infinite justice required. And that is how He became the Way. He is the Truth. He is the Life. But He couldn’t give that life to man. He couldn’t even impart that truth to man. We are separated from Him.
So, Christ paid that penalty. He didn’t just…well, it’s beyond our comprehension. I try to illustrate it: It’s the difference between Barabbas—Barabbas could say (Barabbas being the prisoner that was let loose in exchange for Christ), and Barabbas could have said that Christ died in his place. But Barabbas wasn’t saved—it meant that Barabbas, that scoundrel, was set free to go out and live his life again as he pleased.
But Paul said, “I am crucified with Christ.” So when we accept the fact that Christ died in our place, and we recognize that when He took our place, God’s judgment had to come upon Him, then we acknowledge the justice of God’s judgment, the justice of the death penalty, and we accept His death as our death. And so we go through Christ into death and come out into resurrection. So, we have to be done away with. You can’t just turn over a new leaf. There has to be a new person created, and the old person has to be put to death. And that happens in Christ…
Dave: …and my faith in Him. This is the gift of God. This is redemption, and as I was saying, I’m still over here. I was in Augsburg a couple of weeks ago—Augsburg, where they just signed the accord, you know, between, the Lutherans and the Catholics. This is an incredible country over here where people were burned at the stake. They were burned at the stake because of the difference of belief in this very thing that we’re talking about.
And the pope, the Catholic Church, said, “Salvation comes through the sacraments. It comes through doing good works. It comes through the church.” And you have to keep working for it, and you never know whether you’ve got it or whether you’ll make it to heaven. And there were those who, from reading the Bible—and, you know, I’ve talked to some. I was talking to a man just today who was so far from God, and yet, by reading the scriptures, he saw—they saw—that salvation is a gift of God; it is by grace; it is through Christ. And this is where that battle was fought. And it’s just amazing to be here and to travel in this area.
And some of us have forgotten that, and of course, you know, there’s—now they’re saying that there’s no difference; I guess it was a semantic misunderstanding (that would be a shock to Luther and to Calvin. It would be a shock to the popes back then as well). What has changed? The Catholic Church has not changed.
Tom: Not at all.
Dave: Somehow, the evangelicals, even—not just Protestants, Modernists, but evangelicals are now denying the reality of what the Reformation was all about. And this is what we’re discussing. It’s a gift of God. It’s a completed work. It’s a finished transaction. We receive eternal life as a free gift. There’s nothing we can do. Salvation is not…the gospel is not about what we do—it’s about what Christ has done. And as soon as we deny the sufficiency of His sacrifice by saying that the Mass is a sacrifice, Christ is being sacrificed again and again, that we have to ingest Him as a wafer into our stomach, and somehow we hope we’re going to get through Purgatory—the pope has just opened “holy doors,” if you can imagine—doors being “holy” in Rome. He opened four of them. Pilgrims will come from all over the world to walk through these doors—to somehow think that that will give them grace from God! But it doesn’t save them. They have to do penance, and they’ve got to do more good works, and so forth.
I’m right over here where this whole battle was fought, tragically, with the death of many people.
Tom: Yeah, but, Dave, as you say, the Catholic Church hasn’t changed…
Dave: Not at all!
Tom: Vatican II—but that’s only superficial. The Lutheran Church, with sacramentalism and means of grace, and now moving further and further toward ideas, dogmas, beliefs, doctrines that are….
Dave: Well, but, Tom,…
Dave: Yeah, it’s very simple. It’s a delusion, because, as you know as a former Catholic, one billion Roman Catholics have not changed what they believe. They have not changed what they do. This document that they’ve signed does not make one iota of difference. So, if Catholicism is still the same, and there was a day when Luther nailed his Ninety-five Theses, I mean, the pope would have burned him at the stake if he could have found him. And he was kidnapped by some friends and taken away and hidden in a castle and protected. And now, they’re saying, “Oh, no. We agree. We all believe the same thing.’
Well, the Catholic Church has not changed. Well, then, apparently the Lutherans have changed. As they have told me here in Germany and in Switzerland, this area, it is not the evangelicals who signed that document over here. It is the liberals and the Modernists, and yet we have evangelical leaders in America who signed Evangelicals and Catholics Together. They say, “Well, we accept one another as brothers and sisters in Christ.”
Well, it’s a tragedy, but we’re trying to discuss it from the Word of God, and when we look at the Word of God, this is what it says, that salvation is a free gift, and it was accomplished on the cross by Christ. There’s nothing we can do. And this is where people died for that belief.
Tom: Dave, one of the reasons we’re going through these verses—and I hope it’s clear to our listeners—these things that you just mentioned are a clear rejection of these incredible verses with all that God offers, with all that He has done, and that’s a rejection of this.
Dave: Tom, it’s nothing for us to dialogue about, for the Lutherans and Catholics to dialogue, or whatever. There’s no discussion about it! This is…we’re separated from God by sin. And either God is going to save us, or we’re not going to be saved. And salvation comes from God, it comes on His terms. So, the theologian will sit down and discuss this for thirty years, I’m sorry—it’s ludicrous! It’s a waste of time. What they need to do is go to God’s Word. What has God said about this? And this is all that we’re trying to discuss now, and this is what this program is all about. Search the Scriptures Daily. Don’t take our word for it. Don’t take the word of any theologian or any church. You’d better take the Word of God, because He’s the one we’re going to face, and He’s the one who has accomplished everything, and He offers salvation as a free gift. And it’s an insult and a rejection of that gift not to accept it on His terms. And you’ll never have it on any other terms.