MAX KLEIN BIBLE MINISTRIES
The Book of Romans : Chapter Five
A verse-by-verse commentary by Max Klein
Therefore having been justified by faith let us [command] have prosperity face to face with the God through our Lord Jesus Christ.
∆ικαιωθέντες οὖν ἐκ πίστεως εἰρήνην ἔχοµεν πρὸς τὸν θεὸν διὰ τοῦ κυρίου ἡµῶν Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ,
Through whom [the Lord Jesus Christ] also we have obtained that access by means of faith into this grace [at salvation] in which we stand [our eternal security]; and so, let us have esprit de corps in confidence of the glory of God [by receiving great blessing in time & eternity which blessings glorifying God].
Δι’ οὗ καὶ τὴν προσαγωγὴν ἐσχήκαµεν τῇ πίστει εἰς τὴν χάριν ταύτην ἐν ᾗ ἑστήκαµεν, καὶ καυχώµεθα ἐπí ἐλπίδι τῆς δόξης τοῦ θεοῦ.
And not only this [esprit de corps regarding glorifying God], but let us demonstrate esprit de corps in adversities, knowing that adversities bring about [through the application of doctrine] a staying power [an endurance: the strength, courage, honor, and integrity to handle all the pressures of life].
οὐ µόνον δέ, ἀλλὰ καὶ καυχώµεθα ἐν ταῖς θλίψεσιν, εἰδότες ὅτι ἡ θλῖψις ὑποµονὴν κατεργάζεται,
Jesus was able to remain on the cross since he had this staying power in His soul. Hebrews 12:2, “Be concentrating on Jesus, the pioneer (leader-hero, the first one to use the prototype spiritual life] and perfector [He perfected the use of the Problem Solving Devices] of our doctrine who because of his exhibited happiness [Sharing the happiness of God provided the strongest possible motivation], he endured the cross [the staying power to remain on the cross under the greatest pressure ever] disregarding the shame [He did not react to the sins for which he was being punished] and sat down [his humanity] at right hand of the throne of God [the Father].”
And this staying power [an endurance: the strength, courage, honor, and integrity to handle all the pressures of life] brings about demonstrated integrity, and demonstrated integrity brings about confidence [in God].
ἡ δὲ ὑποµονὴ δοκιµήν, ἡ δὲ δοκιµὴ ἐλπίδα·
And confidence does not disappoint, because the love for God has been poured out [the Greek word “ekcheo] in our hearts [our streams of consciousness] by the personal agency of the Holy Spirit who was given to us for our benefit.
ἡ δὲ ἐλπὶς οὐ καταισχύνει, ὅτι ἡ ἀγάπη τοῦ θεοῦ ἐκκέχυται ἐν ταῖς καρδίαις ἡµῶν διὰ πνεύµατος ἁγίου τοῦ δοθέντος ἡµῖν,
Confidence in the love of God and in one’s love for God:
Confidence is always related to knowledge. No one has confidence when he is in a state of ignorance. No one has confidence in a person unless he knows that person very well. First comes knowledge, second comes confidence.
In this verse, confidence is based on our understanding of God’s eternal love for us. As the believer learns about God’s love and responds, he develops a love for God. In this way, he gradually gains a confidence in God and in God’s plan.
As the believer advances in the spiritual life, he must advance with two columns. The first column is formed from his understanding of the principles and categories of doctrine found in Scripture. The second column is formed from his love (appreciation, respect, obedience, devotion) for God. There must be the simultaneously advance of two columns namely doctrine and love for they support and protect each other namely doctrine is the basis for love and love is the motivation to learn more doctrine.
Some Christians learn many doctrines of Scripture and may even learn of God’s love, but they never develop a love for God; they never walk by faith, appreciate God’s grace, develop divine standards and values, or try to please God in their motivation, thinking, decisions and actions. These Christians will eventually give-up under the pressures of punishment or testing. Only love for God [with emphasis on the primary components namely knowledge, integrity and the appreciation of grace and the functioning under it] provides the necessary motivation to carry one through the difficult times of punishment or testing.
Other Christians appreciate their salvation and eternal security, the seeds of love, but they do not learn consistently from a prepared pastor. Thus, eventually their desire to love dissipates and is replaced by emotion or legalism. It takes two columns to advance spiritually. If the Christian attempts to advance with only one column, he will fail.
If the Christian learns from a qualified minister about God’s love for him in eternity past, he should be able to respond to that love with a love for God. “We ourselves [mature believers] love God because he himself first loved us” (1 John 4:19).
The Holy Spirit is the teacher of love:
The Christian must understand God’s love of eternity past before he can develop a love for God. The Greek phrase, ἡ ἀγάπη τοῦ θεοῦ “he agape tou theou” can be translated as either “the love of God” or “the love for God.” Here it should be translated, “the love for God has been poured out [the Greek word “ekcheo] in our hearts [our streams of consciousness]” As the pastor communicates accurately about God’s love for the Christian in eternity past, the Holy Spirit fills the soul of the believer with an understanding and an appreciation of God’s love. The Greek word “ekcheo” is in the intensive perfect tense. The intensive perfect tense emphasizes the results of a completed action. The completed action is the believer’s spiritual growth and his understanding of God’s love for him in eternity past. This results in his love for God.
Who instructs the Christian regarding the subject of love? This is accomplished through the faithful ministry of God the Holy Spirit “through the agency of the Holy Spirit.” A faithful and qualified pastor is the voice; the Holy Spirit is the teacher. As the pastor communicates information dealing with God’s love for us, the Holy Spirit teaches and circulates that information in our stream of consciousness. Under the filling of the Holy Spirit the believer responds to God’s love with a love for God.
The Filling of the Holy Spirit was given to us for our benefit by the Lord Jesus Christ. The Greek dative of advantage requires that we translate this last part as follows: “to us for our benefit.” One of the greatest benefits in life is the teaching ministry of God the Holy Spirit. Through it, we can obtain the greatest possible love for God.
Love for God is never disappointing:
Ephesians 3:19, 20, “And get to know the love of Christ [and for Christ] which goes beyond academic knowledge [beyond gnosis is metabolized doctrine epignosis] that you may be filled [The Holy Spirit teaches us to love Christ] resulting in all the fullness of [blessing: refer to Romans 15:29] from the source of God. Now to him [Father] who is able to do infinitely more than we could ask [in prayer] or think on the basis of the power [the two power options producing the two columns advancing toward maximum glorification of God] that keeps working in us for our benefit.” Romans 15:29, “I know that when I come to you, I will come in the fullness of the blessing of Christ.”
When the Christian learns about the love of the Lord Jesus Christ, that is the love of his deity and humanity, then under the teaching ministry of the Holy Spirit we begin to love Christ. At this point, God the Father will give us things that are beyond our expectations or dreams. Not only this, but God the Father also converts every negative in life into a positive. Every problem, difficulty, pressure, disaster, or any evil directed toward the believer is converted from a negative to a positive through the application of one of the Problem-Solving Devices. Positive means spiritual blessing, production, and growth.
And we know [only a few Christians] that to those who love God [only the mature believers], he [God] causes all things [through the use of the 10 Problem Devices/the spiritual life] to work together for good [intrinsic good manufactured from divine power] to those [all believers] who are called according to his predetermined plan. (Romans 8:28)
How does Romans 8:28 apply to romance. This promise, which removes all disappointments of life, applies only to those believers who have a personal love for God. When the believer has a personal love for God, no person or situation in life is able to disappoint him.
Romance without capacity is disappointing.
Without capacity entering into a romantic relationship with people produces disappointment and frustration because expectations are not met. Very few people are loved the way they want to be loved or treated the way the want to be treated. Let’s say that two people in love get married. The wife expects her husband to love her always, and the husband expects his wife to respect and obey him consistently. Only two mature believers in fellowship with God can fulfill these expectations, but even mature believers are not always in fellowship. However, if one realizes that most Christians getting married are not mature believers, he can begin to understand the problem. They are both functioning under unrealistic expectations. Only God can love the believer in such a way as to completely fulfill all the believer’s expectations.
What happens when Christians enter into romance without the two columns? What happens when the Christian is not loved or treated the way he wants to be treated by the opposite sex? Well, he develops the demand-syndrome (a demanding attitude and behavior). The wife demands love from her husband, and the husband demands respect and obedience from his wife. When these demands are not fulfilled, they become frustrated. From this frustration come bitterness, self-pity and resentment. From resentment comes malice, and from malice comes revenge. Without a love for God and doctrine in the soul, the Christian will fail in marriage or in any other relationship in life.
For while we were still helpless [from birth to the 2nd birth] at the right time [in the fullness of time] Christ died [substitutionary spiritual death] as a substitute for the godless ones [without God: unbelievers].
ἔτι γὰρ Χριστὸς ὄντων ἡµῶν ἀσθενῶν ἔτι κατὰ καιρὸν ὑπὲρ ἀσεβῶν ἀπέθανεν.
Mankind is born with a sin nature and without a human spirit.
When Adam committed the original sin of disobedience, he died spiritually namely he acquired a sin nature and lost his human spirit. Adam was warned that in the day that he ate from the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, he would die spiritually.
But from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil you [Adam] shall not eat from it for in the day that you eat from it dying [the Hebrew infinitive: mot, spiritual death] you will die [the Hebrew imperfect: tamut, physical death] (Genesis 2:17)
In most translations of Genesis 2:17, the Hebrew doubling of the verb (the infinitive followed by the imperfect) is translated as an intensive “you shall surely die.” However, this translation does not convey the true meaning of this verse. The Hebrew doubling of the verb “mot tamut” should be translated “dying you will die” as certain scholars have argued. In this case the infinitive “dying” refers to spiritual death, and “you will die” refers to physical death. Adam and his wife died spiritually immediately but did not die physically until many years later.
On the very day that Adam and his wife ate of the fruit, they died spiritually, that is, they acquired sin natures and lost their human spirits. They demonstrated possession of their sin natures when they put on fig leaves (Genesis 3:7). Man with a sin nature seeks to have a relationship with God through some method of human good or religion. Then, when the Lord came into the garden and called for them that he might judge them, they demonstrated the loss of their human spirits by hiding from the Lord (Genesis 3:8). No human spirit means no relationship with God; no relationship with God means judgment. If Jesus Christ were to announce that he was going to visit your city tomorrow to judge, most believers would welcome him even those out of fellowship. However, most unbelievers would stay out of sight since they do not have a relationship with God via a human spirit. Also, since they no longer had a relationship with God, they easily succumbed to the temptation of fear from their sin natures (Genesis 3:10). In their fallen states, Adam and his wife possessed sin natures, but no longer possessed human spirits.
Thus, Adam’s descendants at birth possess sin natures (Romans 5:12), and do not possess human spirits (1 Corinthians 2:14; Jude 19). The progeny of Adam are born like fallen Adam.
For this reason, just as through one man [Adam, not the woman], the sin nature entered the world and through the sin nature, death [God legally imputes Adam’s original sin to the sin nature of the individual at birth. This results in spiritual death], and in this way death [spiritual death] spread [through the male sperm] to all mankind because in him all have sinned [the human race was seminally in Adam]. (Romans 5:12)
Paul calls the unbeliever ‘the soulish man’ because the unbeliever possesses a body and soul but not a human spirit.
But the soulish man [psukikos anthropos] cannot receive the things [the Word of God] from the Spirit of God for they are foolishness to him, and he is not able to understand because they are spiritually discerned [Since the unbeliever does not have a human spirit, he cannot discern spiritual matters.] (1 Corinthians 2:14).
Jude even defines the soulish man for us. “These are the ones [unbelievers] causing divisions soulish ones [psuchikoi] not having a spirit” (Jude 19). Jude very clearly states that the unbeliever does not possess a human spirit.
The sin nature resides in the cell structure of the body:
When the sin nature controls the soul, the person is described as having a “desperately wicked heart.” “The heart [soul] of man is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked.” (Jeremiah 17:9) In other words, the sin nature residing in the cell structure of the body presents a temptation which enters the soul and is defined in words and thought. So, although the sin nature does not reside in the soul, it can entice the volition of the soul with a well-defined temptation. Once this temptation is defined, the volition makes a decision for or against. If the person consents to the temptation, the sin nature takes control of the soul and in this way the soul becomes desperately wicked.
Let no one say when he is being tempted, I am being tempted from God, for God is not capable of being tempted from the source of evil, neither does he [God] tempt any man. (14) But each one [analogy to a man being tempted to fornicate] is tempted when he is lured away [enticed] and entrapped by his own lust [analogy to a female seductress]. (15) Then, when lust has conceived [becomes pregnant when the believer makes the decision to sin], it gives birth to sin [the believer commits the sin], and when the sin has become fully grown [the believer continues to involve himself in some sin and subsequently fails in the spiritual life], it brings forth death [the sin unto death]. (James 1:13-15)
The sin nature is not part of the soul. Since the sin-nature is material and mortal, it cannot be an intrinsic part of the immaterial and immortal soul. So, when God creates the soul at birth for each member of the human race, it does not possess a sin nature.
Paul used many expressions for the sin nature and many of them relate to the body. Paul uses the words, “sarks” (flesh), “harmartia” (sin, sin nature), “to soma tes harmartias,” (the body of sin) and “ho palaios hemon anthropos” (our old man) for the sin nature. Paul called the sin nature “flesh” and the “body of sin” since the sin nature resides in the cells of the body. He called it the “old man” since it is as old as the garden. Since the garden, the sin nature has resided in the body.
For we know that the Law is spiritual, but I am of the flesh [sin nature] sold in bondage to sin [the sin nature] (Romans 7:14).
But, I say, walk by means of the Spirit and you will not execute the lusts of the flesh [the sin nature] (Galatians 5:16).
Knowing this that our old man [sin nature] was crucified with him so that the body of sin [sin nature] might be rendered powerless in order that we should no longer be slaves to the sin [nature] (Romans 6:6). (As a result of the work on the cross, God has provided for the believer the Recovery Procedure and a powerful spiritual life which when deployed will render the sin nature powerless.)
The sin nature is passed down through the man in copulation:
Since the sin nature resides in the cell structure of the body, it is passed down to the next generation biologically. The sperm and the egg are biological life. Thus, when the sperm and the egg are united at conception, biological life is perpetuated, and the sin nature is transmitted to the offspring.
David understood that the sin nature is passed down in conception. Some theologians completely misunderstand the phrase, “in sin he was conceived.” They think that Jesse, David’s father, committed adultery resulting in the birth of David. This is ridiculous! There would be no reason for David to make such a statement about his father even if it had been true. David is teaching a very important point of doctrine, namely that the sin nature is passed down at conception. “Behold, I was born in iniquity [Adam’s original sin imputed] and in sin I was conceived [sin nature passed down in conception]” (Psalm 51:5).
Since Adam was given authority over the woman, and since he sinned knowing well the consequences, he would be the one who would pass the sin nature down to his offspring (Romans 5:12).
In order for God to pass down the sin nature through the man in copulation, the sin nature must reside in the sperm, but not in the egg. Therefore, God designed the production of the ovum differently from the production of the sperm.
Even though the woman possesses the sin nature in each cell of her body, the egg, a gamete (half-cell), does not possess the sin nature. The egg manufacturing process is called meiosis and polar body. In this process, part of the cell is discarded and destroyed and with it the sin nature. This results in a pure egg free of any contamination of the sin nature. We can deduce this logically for the egg manufacturing process begins with a whole cell and finishes with half-cells. Logically if the sin nature resides in the whole cell, but is not found in the egg, it had to be discarded at some point. Since part of the cell is discarded in this process, the sin nature logically was in that part which was discarded.
When the man produces the sperm, nothing is destroyed. The sperm manufacturing process is very different from the egg manufacturing process. God designed these processes differently in order that the man would be the transmitter of the fallen nature. So, since the sin nature is not discarded in the manufacturing of the sperm, the sperm contains the sin nature and is the means by which the human race receives its fallen nature (sinful nature).
Man is a sinner at birth:
The sin nature cannot function without human life since its temptations are put into thought within the soul and are then used to entice the soul’s volition. Therefore, the sin nature begins to function when the exiting fetus receives a soul and acquires human life. So, the beginning of human life and the activation of the sin nature are simultaneous.
When God imputes the soul at birth, at the same time he imputes Adam’s original sin to the sin nature. Thus, mankind is born physically alive, but spiritually dead. “For all have sinned [through the imputation of Adam’s sin at birth] and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).
For as through one man’s disobedience [Adam] the many [human race] were made sinners [the imputation of Adam’s Original Sin at birth], even so through the obedience of one [the humanity of Christ], many [those who believe] will be made righteous [imputed righteousness at salvation] (Romans 5:19).
Christ born perfect through Mary:
God never does anything without a reason. Why do you think that God would not permit Joseph to copulate with Mary in the formation of the biological life of Jesus? If he had, Jesus Christ would not have been born perfect for he would have possessed a sin nature via the sperm. However, since God’s plan is perfect, Joseph was not permitted to copulate with Mary until after the birth of Jesus Christ (Matthew 1:25).
Furthermore, Jeconiah, the forebear of Joseph was very evil. Since he was so evil, God said that the Messiah would not come down through the line of Jehoiachin (also called Jeconiah, Coniah). This line starts with David and includes Solomon, Jehoiachin, and Joseph. Since Joseph is descendant from the line of Jehoiachin (Jeconiah) the Messiah cannot be a descendant of Joseph. However, Mary’s line starts with David, then Nathan and finally Mary herself. God chose this line to be the Messianic line. Thus, God had to use Mary’s twenty-three chromosomes to form the biological life of the humanity of Christ-otherwise Christ would not be the Son of David.
Thus says the Lord, ‘Write this man [King Jeconiah,] down childless [no royal heir]. A man who will not prosper in his days; For no man of his descendants will prosper sitting on the throne of David [no more Kings from that line] or ruling again in Judah (Jeremiah 22:30).
I will put hostility between you [Satan] and the woman [the Savior would come from the woman] and between your seed [fallen angels, unbelievers] and her seed [virgin birth of Jesus Christ, believers]; He [Lord Jesus Christ] will crush you on the head [Satan is defeated at the cross, Second Advent, and the Gog-Magog Revolution], and you will strike him on the heel [antagonism of Satan against Christ during the First Advent]. (Genesis 3:15)
God had to use the egg of Mary since the prophecy of Genesis 3:15 had to be fulfilled namely the humanity of Jesus Christ would come through the seed of a woman. God also had to use Mary’s egg since Jesus Christ had to be genetically related to David (2 Samuel 7:8-17; Psalm 89:20-37; Matthew 1:1). Mary is descended from David’s youngest son, Nathan. Thus, Jesus Christ is called the Son of David and will rule in the millennium and execute justice. In those days and at that time (in the millennium), I will cause a righteous branch of David [through Nathan and Mary] to spring forth, and he (Jesus Christ, the Son of David) shall execute justice and righteousness on the earth (Jeremiah 33:15).
The Lord Jesus Christ solved man’s problem:
As Adam was offered the redemptive solution so his progeny must be offered the redemptive solution. The Lord Jesus Christ explained the cross to Adam and his wife through the use of an animal sacrifice. After they both responded by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, he clothed them with the skins of the animal which was an illustration of being clothed with the righteousness of God (Genesis 3:20, 21).
Then at the right time in history, Jesus Christ went to the cross and died a substitutionary atonement, namely he was judged for the sins of the human race. “He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours, but also for the sins of the whole world” (1 John 2:2).
Death always involves a separation. The humanity of Jesus Christ was separated from having fellowship with God the Father while he was being judged for our sins. “My God, my God, why have you (in the singular a reference to the Father) forsaken me” (Psalm 22:1a; Matthew 27:46).
The sins of humanity required a penalty, and since Jesus Christ was a substitute for all humanity, he received the punishment for all the sins of mankind. “He [God the Father] made him [Jesus Christ] who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Corinthians 5:21).
Jesus Christ never lost his spiritual life nor his fellowship with the Spirit. That would be blasphemous to even suggest it. He had no sin nature; no imputation of Adam’s sin; no personal sins of his own. Although the humanity of Jesus Christ lost fellowship with the Father during those last three hours on the cross, he continued to have fellowship with the Holy Spirit who sustained him during that critical period of history. When Jesus said, “why have you forsaken me” it does not refer to God the Holy Spirit. The pronoun “you” is in the singular and refers only to God the Father. After his work was finished on the cross, he prayed to the Father demonstrating that his spiritual life was still intact (Matthew 27:50; Mark 15:37; Luke 23:46; John 19:30; Psalm 31:5).
Since Jesus Christ remained perfectly impeccable on the cross through the two power options, he was able to provide salvation for all mankind. So, even though mankind is born helpless and separated from God (sinners with a sin nature and lacking a human spirit), the work of Jesus Christ on the cross solved both the problem of sin and the sin nature and made it possible for mankind to acquire a human spirit at salvation and to have an eternal relationship with God through imputed righteousness.
For only rarely someone may die on behalf of a righteous person [emphasis on the greatness of the one who continues to live], indeed, on behalf of a good person someone might even be brave enough to die [emphasizes the greatness of the one who died].
µόλις γὰρ ὑπὲρ δικαίου τις ἀποθανεῖται· ὑπὲρ γὰρ τοῦ ἀγαθοῦ τάχα τις καὶ τολµᾷ ἀποθανεῖν
Jesus Christ paid the Price for the Spiritual Death of the Unrighteous:
Only rarely would someone die for a righteously noble person, and occasionally someone would have enough courage to die for a good person for example a soldier placing his body over an exploding grenade in order to save his buddies. However, no sane person would die for a horribly unrighteous person, but that is exactly what Christ, the perfectly sane person did. Jesus neither died for the righteous nor for the good, but rather for His unrighteous enemies. So, Romans 5:7 is a human analogy set up to contrast with what Jesus did for the human race as stated in Romans 5:8.
A person dying for a righteous person emphasizes the one spared, whereas a courageous person dying for a good person emphasizes the one giving his life. So, there is two categories of supreme sacrifice in the human race (Romans 5:6).
A righteous person is sometimes delivered by the death of another, whereas a courageous person will be brave enough to die for another.
In human sacrifice for another, only two things can be emphasized namely the character of the person who is delivered and in the second case, the character of the person who delivers and dies.
Maximum human sacrifice involves forfeiting one’s life for another.
However, there can never be an exact analogy between someone giving his life to deliver another and the work of Christ on the cross.
Only a representative analogy is possible for the death of Christ on the cross for sinners. On the cross, only the character of Christ is emphasized as having the integrity, the nobility, the ability, the greatness.
Those who were delivered through salvation have no character, no righteousness of their own in the site of God.
The physical death of a human being can never be compared to the substitutionary spiritual death of Jesus Christ providing the work of salvation for the entire human race.
Romans 5:8, 9
But the God demonstrates His own love for us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died as a substitute for us. Much more [with greater reason], therefore having now been justified [received imputed righteousness and declared righteous and qualified to go to heaven] by his blood [redemption, reconciliation, propitiation] we will be delivered from the wrath of God through him [through the work of Jesus Christ on the cross; Logically, the believer cannot be cast into the Lake of Fire.]
συνίστησιν δὲ τὴν ἑαυτοῦ ἀγάπην εἰς ἡµᾶς ὁ θεὸς ὅτι ἔτι ἁµαρτωλῶν ὄντων ἡµῶν Χριστὸς ὑπὲρ ἡµῶν ἀπέθανεν. 9 πολλῷ οὖν µᾶλλον δικαιωθέντες νῦν ἐν τῷ αἵµατι αὐτοῦ σωθησόµεθα διí αὐτοῦ ἀπὸ τῆς ὀργῆς.
“A fortiori” is a Latin phrase meaning "with stronger reason." (The equivalent Greek phrase is “pollo mallon:” by how much more.) It is a system of logic comparing two facts. Then by this system, one can infer from these two facts a stronger fact or conclusion. This stronger fact or conclusion is so powerful that it cannot be denied, it is an inescapable conclusion. This inescapable conclusion produces confidence in the Christian using it.
Even though nothing is difficult for God, the most difficult thing from the viewpoint of degree was providing salvation for sinful mankind. In order to do so, God the Father had to design a plan by which his righteousness would be satisfied. The Son would have to agree to become the God-Man, agree to provide the work for reconciliation and propitiation. His humanity would require a spiritual life strong enough to carry out this near impossible plan. The Holy Spirit would need to provide the power in order that the humanity of Christ would reach the cross in a state of perfect human righteousness and remain there until every sin of mankind was judged. This was not a simple matter.
On the other hand, one of the easiest things for God to do is to provide eternal security for Christians. Since all believers received imputed righteousness at salvation, God declares them qualified to live with him forever which declaration an immutable God cannot change. So, the pre-salvation and post-salvation sins already paid for on the cross, and other failures of the believer cannot remove the imputed righteousness given to him unconditionally at salvation. This is a relatively simple matter compared to what was required to provide a propitiatory offering on the cross for all mankind.
If God has done the most difficult thing for his enemies namely the work on the cross and all that led up to it, it follows logically he will not withhold the less difficult namely eternal security for his beloved children.
It is most difficult to give the believer at salvation imputed righteousness and to declare him perfectly righteous. It is easy for God to keep the believer from the Last Judgment. If God gave an unrighteous person as part of the salvation package his righteousness (when he believed in Jesus Christ), then he cannot take away that righteousness from a righteous person (the Christian with imputed righteousness). God gave his righteousness to a person whom he did not love personally. Therefore, God who is always rational cannot take away his righteousness from a person (Christian) for whom he has infinite personal love.
Paul understood that God is rational. Therefore, Paul uses an “a fortiori” system of reasoning to prove that the Christian cannot be brought before the Great White Throne Judgment at the end of history (Revelation 20:11-15). If the Christian can reason, then he will agree that if God did the most difficult things for his enemies, with greater reason, he would provide the simpler things for his beloved children (solve problems, provide eternal security etc.).
For if while we were enemies [as unbelievers], we were reconciled to the God [the Father] by means of the substitutionary spiritual death of His Son and we were, by how much more, having been reconciled [barrier between God and man removed by Christ], we [His beloved Christians] shall be delivered by His life.
εἰ γὰρ ἐχθροὶ ὄντες κατηλλάγηµεν τῷ θεῷ διὰ τοῦ θανάτου τοῦ υἱοῦ αὐτοῦ, πολλῷ µᾶλλον καταλλαγέντες σωθησόµεθα ἐν τῇ ζωῇ αὐτοῦ
Usually, one can do a lot more in his life than in his death. However, Jesus Christ did the most difficult for us as unbelievers through the work of His substitutionary death. Then, it follows logically that he can provide a spiritual life, an eternal body, and an eternal relationship with Him etc. through his life at the right hand of the Father. If we were reconciled to God as His enemies, it follows, a fortiori, that we will be delivered as sons by His life. In other words, if greater benefit has been given (reconciliation), the less (deliverance by His life) will not be withheld. If God can do the greater, it follows, a fortiori, that God can accomplish the less. Greater or less is not a matter of quality but of logical effort required.
And not only this [reconciliation] but also have esprit de corps [advance enthusiastically in the spiritual life] in the God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.
οὐ µόνον δέ, ἀλλὰ καὶ καυχώµενοι ἐν τῷ θεῷ διὰ τοῦ κυρίου ἡµῶν Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ, διí οὗ νῦν τὴν καταλλαγὴν ἐλάβοµεν
1. Esprit dé corps in God is synonymous with advancing toward occupation with the person of Jesus Christ. Occupation with Christ is the first characteristic of maturity adjustment to the integrity of God.
2. Our Lord Jesus Christ is mentioned as the only Savior, the one bearing our sins and being judged for them by the integrity of God.
3. God the Father judging our sins at the cross and Jesus Christ bearing our sins or being judged for our sins on the cross produced reconciliation.
4. Reconciliation involves both the bearing of our sins by Christ and the judgment of those sins by the Father.
5. Therefore, we have esprit dé corps in God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ.
For this reason just as through one man [Adam] the sin nature entered into the world, and so spiritual death through the sin nature [Adam’s Original Sin imputed to the Sin Nature], and so spiritual death spread to all mankind, because all sinned when Adam sinned [Since we were seminally in Adam when he sinned, we receive the sin nature through his seed and consequently receive the imputation of Adam’s Original Sin].
∆ιὰ τοῦτο ὥσπερ διí ἑνὸς ἀνθρώπου ἡ ἁµαρτία εἰς τὸν κόσµον εἰσῆλθεν καὶ διὰ τῆς ἁµαρτίας ὁ θάνατος, καὶ οὕτως εἰς πάντας ἀνθρώπους ὁ θάνατος διῆλθεν, ἐφí ᾧ πάντες ἥµαρτον
The constative aorist gathers into one entirety the entire human race. Hence, when Adam sinned, we all sinned because we were all seminally in Adam when he sinned. Illustration: Just as Levi was seminally in Abraham when Abraham paid tithes to Melchizedek, so the entire human race was in Adam when Adam sinned.
A few points:
1. Spiritual death is lack of relationship with the integrity of God—cut off from the divine attributes.
2. Spiritual death is the antagonism of the integrity of God toward mankind.
3. Spiritual death is divine righteousness rejecting both the sin nature as well as its function.
4. Justice demands justice. The justice of God executes what the righteousness of God demands.
5. Spiritual death is an impassable barrier between God and man established by the integrity of God at the time of the original sin.
6. Spiritual death is an impassable barrier perpetuated in human history, a barrier which can only be removed by the integrity of God.
7. The removal of the barrier demands both the function of the justice of God judging our sins when Christ was carrying them on the cross, and the imputation of divine righteousness to anyone in the human race who will believe in Christ.
For until the Law was given [Adam to Moses] personal sin was in the world, but personal sin was not imputed when the Law did not exist. [Paul used this period to make a point namely those personal sins were not imputed for condemnation as per the next verse. Personal sins apart from Adam’s Original Sin were not imputed until the cross at which time, they were imputed and judged.]
ἄχρι γὰρ νόµου ἁµαρτία ἦν ἐν κόσµῳ, ἁµαρτία δὲ οὐκ ἐλλογεῖται µὴ ὄντος νόµου·
Though personal sins existed in the world from Adam to Moses, they were not the basis for condemnation from the justice of God.
2. The only sin ever imputed to us was Adam’s Original Sin which was imputed to our sin nature at birth which imputation brought about our spiritual death and subsequent condemnation from God.
3. Our personal sins are the manifestation of spiritual death, but they are not the cause of spiritual death.
4. It is imperative to understand that personal sins apart from Adam’s Original Sin were never imputed until the cross. Only Adam’s Original Sin was ever imputed to us and that occurred at our physical birth resulting in our spiritual death and condemnation.
5. On the cross Christ not only bore our sins as a result of imputation but was judged for our sins as the means of salvation. ***
Nevertheless the spiritual death ruled from Adam to Moses [because Adam’s Original Sin was imputed at birth], even over those who had not sinned in the likeness of Adam's transgression, who [Adam] is a type of Him [Christ] who was destined to come [1st Advent]. (Adam was created perfect; Jesus was born perfect.)
ἀλλὰ ἐβασίλευσεν ὁ θάνατος ἀπὸ Ἀδὰµ µέχρι Μωϋσέως καὶ ἐπὶ τοὺς µὴ ἁµαρτήσαντας ἐπὶ τῷ ὁµοιώµατι τῆς παραβάσεως Ἀδάµ, ὅς ἐστιν τύπος τοῦ µέλλοντος.
Even though there was no Mosaic Law which defines sins, from Adam to Moses, yet spiritual death ruled. Even though these people did not sin in the likeness of Adam’s transgression, they were in Adam’s loins. Being in the loins of Adam, God imputed Adam’s Original Sin to their sin natures at the time of their birth. So, what is the point? Spiritual death is not related to our personal sins for apart from Adam’s Original Sin, no sin is ever imputed to any member of the human race for condemnation. These sins were imputed directly to Jesus on the cross for judgment.
Religion always distorts this truth. Religious people like the Judaizers always maintained that one is saved by doing good namely by keeping the Mosaic Law and by avoiding the gross sins as religious people would describe the more obvious sins. However, this is not true for one is not saved by keeping the Mosaic Law nor is one condemned by any sin he may commit whether it be an overt sin or one not so obvious.
A few points of explanation:
1. Adam’s sin was negative volition, direct disobedience to the command of God, regarding the prohibition of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil.
2. While members of the human race do not commit the exact sin that Adam committed, they do have the facsimiles and the justice of God recognizes the facsimiles under the principle of guilt. In other words, everyone does not express sin in the same way.
3. Not only sin but good and evil emanate from the old sin nature. Sin, good, and evil however, are not the basis for spiritual death. They are the result of spiritual death.
But so that gracious gift [the Incarnation and the saving work of Jesus Christ on the cross] is not like that transgression [Adam’s Original Sin]. For if by the transgression of that one [Adam] the many [the entire human race] died [spiritual death at birth] and they did, much more the grace of God [of the Father imputing all our sins to Christ and judging them], even the gift with grace abound to the many [persons who believe in Jesus Christ and then advance spiritually] by the one Man, Jesus Christ.
Ἀλλí οὐχ ὡς τὸ παράπτωµα, οὕτως καὶ τὸ χάρισµα· εἰ γὰρ τῷ τοῦ ἑνὸς παραπτώµατι οἱ πολλοὶ ἀπέθανον, πολλῷ µᾶλλον ἡ χάρις τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ ἡ δωρεὰ ἐν χάριτι τῇ τοῦ ἑνὸς ἀνθρώπου Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ εἰς τοὺς πολλοὺς ἐπερίσσευσεν.
A few points:
1. As noted in the previous verse Christ as the antitype to Adam’s type is
impeccable and perfect in His humanity.
2. Christ did not have a sin nature, did not have the imputation of Adam’s sin, did not have any personal sin, in contrast to the first Adam.
3. The typology of the two Adam’s, then, can only be carried a certain distance. It cannot be carried into their persons because as persons they were quite different. Adam was unique because he was created perfect and fell. Christ was unique because He is the God-Man and remained in His humanity impeccable.
4. The first Adam brought condemnation on the entire human race, while the last Adam brings salvation to the human race.
5. Because of the first Adam, the justice of God condemns man, but because of the last Adam the justice of God is free to provide blessing for man—beginning at salvation through imputed righteousness and justification.
6. Therefore, while the human race is born spiritually dead because of Adam the human race is born again in Christ.
God always give his best:
1. The believer in Christ through salvation adjustment to the integrity of God has been placed in a greater position than that which was lost by Adam in the garden.
2. God provides more in grace-adjustment to the integrity of God than man ever possessed originally in the garden.
3. The gift of grace, Jesus Christ, provides the a fortiori link explained in the following point.
4. The sin of the first Adam results in the condemnation of the human race, but now the grace gift of God provides more for the many than was lost originally.
5. Hence, the believer is not restored to the status of Adam before the fall, he is restored to something far greater than Adam ever had.
In fact, the grace-gift [refers to the Lord’s humanity being judged for the sins of the world] is not like that which came through one [Adam] who sinned [is not like the result of one man’s sin]. For on the one hand, judgment [of real spiritual death of Adam and his progeny] came from one transgression [Adam’s Original Sin] resulting in condemnation [to Adam at the time of his sin and to his progeny at birth]. But on the other hand, that gracious gift [substitutionary spiritual death of Jesus] was given because of many transgressions [many personal sins in the human race as a result of Adam’s sin] resulting in justification [the work of justification was accomplished on the cross for all humanity].
καὶ οὐχ ὡς δι’ ἑνὸς ἁµαρτήσαντος τὸ δώρηµα· τὸ µὲν γὰρ κρίµα ἐξ ἑνὸς εἰς κατάκριµα, τὸ δὲ χάρισµα ἐκ πολλῶν παραπτωµάτων εἰς δικαίωµα.
The real spiritual death of Adam and his progeny created the problem; the substitutionary spiritual death of Jesus on the cross solved the problem. The 1st Adam through his sin brought about our condemnation at birth; the 2nd Adam removed our condemnation through his work of Justification on the cross to those who appropriate that work through faith alone in Christ alone.
1. One to many: From one transgression (Adam’s sin) came many spiritual deaths and condemnations.
2. Many to one: The gift which is the saving work of Christ on the cross resulted in many transgressions or sins being judged for one justification.
3. The first Adam committed one sin and the entire human race came under condemnation because of that one sin.
4. The last Adam was judged for all sins and the entire human race is eligible for justification.
5. From one comes many sins, from many sins comes one justification.
1. The integrity of God is composed of divine righteousness and justice.
2. To avoid compromise and inconsistency a principle of doctrine becomes axiomatic: Divine justice can only bless divine righteousness.
3. Righteousness is the principle of divine integrity; justice is the function of divine integrity.
4. God cannot accept anything less than perfect righteousness and God cannot bless anything less than perfect righteousness.
5. Hence, the imputation of divine righteousness is absolutely necessary for any blessing from the justice of God for fallen humanity.
6. God loves His own integrity composed of His righteousness and justice.
7. Therefore, what righteousness rejects justice condemns. What righteousness accepts or approves divine justice blesses.
8. At the moment of faith in Christ mankind receives the imputation of divine righteousness and resultant justification.
9. God recognizes His righteousness wherever it resides.
10. Justification is simply God recognizing the imputation of divine righteousness at the moment of faith in Christ.
11. Therefore, righteousness imputed and resultant justification is the potential for all blessing from the justice of God.
12. While righteousness imputed is the potential, doctrine perceived and spiritual advance provides the capacity for the greater blessings.
For if by the transgression of that one [the Original Sin of Adam] real spiritual death ruled through that one and it did, much more [a fortiori] they [mature believers] who receive the abundance of grace [greater blessings in time] and of the gift of the righteousness [imputation followed by justification], shall rule in life [through the Operational Spiritual Life by advancing through the three stages of spiritual growth] through the One Jesus Christ [who had the Proto-type spiritual life].
εἰ γὰρ τῷ τοῦ ἑνὸς παραπτώµατι ὁ θάνατος ἐβασίλευσεν διὰ τοῦ ἑνός, πολλῷ µᾶλλον οἱ τὴν περισσείαν τῆς χάριτος καὶ τῆς δωρεᾶς τῆς δικαιοσύνης λαµβάνοντες ἐν ζωῇ βασιλεύσουσιν διὰ τοῦ ἑνὸς Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ.
A Fortiori of Eternal Blessing:
1. If the justice of God provided the greater blessings at spiritual maturity, i.e., the imputation of special blessings, it follows, a fortiori, that the justice of God will not withhold the less, i.e., eternal blessings and rewards at the Judgment Seat of Christ.
2. Paul explains a system of rationale as follows: If you have God’s perfect righteousness, you have logistical blessing. If you have logistical blessing, its purpose is to support you so you can advance to spiritual maturity and receive the greater blessing namely Escrow Blessings. If you have obtained your Escrow Blessings in time, that is a guarantee that you will have something even greater in eternity because it’s easier to provide; it’s the less. The less is always easier to provide logically, but it’s the greater factor namely your Escrow Blessing in eternity which will be much greater than Escrow Blessings in time.
So, therefore as through one transgression [Adam’s Original Sin imputed to the sin nature resulting in spiritual death] resulting in condemnation to all mankind [at birth], even so through one judicial sentence [God the Father imputing personal sins to Jesus Christ on the cross and then judging them.] resulting in the justification of life [no longer spiritually dead] to all mankind [though the work for justification was accomplished for all mankind, it must be appropriated].
Ἄρα οὖν ὡς δι’ ἑνὸς παραπτώµατος εἰς πάντας ἀνθρώπους εἰς κατάκριµα, οὕτως καὶ δι’ ἑνὸς δικαιώµατος εἰς πάντας ἀνθρώπους εἰς δικαίωσιν ζωῆς·
At human birth:
Human birth consists of physical life and spiritual death occurring simultaneously. There is no life in the blastocyst, in the embryo, or the fetus. As long as these are in the womb there is no life. There is reflex motility, movement, but there is no human life. Human life begins when the fetus emerges from the womb and God imputes to that fetus neshamah, the Hebrew word for the spark of (God’s life) life or breath of life. Once this spark of life is united to the brain of the fetus, a soul having human life exist. The spark of life plus biological life equals human life.
Genesis 2:7 “Then the Lord God formed man of dust from the ground [biological life], and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life neshamat chayyim, “soul life”] and man became a living being nephesh chayyah, literally “a soul having life,” i.e., human life].” Human life now resides in the soul.
I suggest one read the booklet, ‘The Origin of Human Life’ by R. B. Thieme Jr. ***
At the birth of Christ:
All cells in the human race are contaminated by the old sin nature. One exception: through meiosis and the function of polar body the 23 chromosomes of the ovum are uncontaminated and are free from the contamination of the sin nature. Therefore, while the woman is a carrier of the old sin nature, she cannot transmit the old sin nature genetically. Only the man transmits the sin nature through his seed which is produced biologically via mitosis, and since Jesus did not have a genetic father, he did not receive a sin nature genetically, and since he did not receive a sin nature there was no basis for God the Father imputing Adam’s Original Sin. So, Jesus was born perfect as Adam was created.
For as through one man's disobedience [Adam’s Original Sin] the many [the human race] were made sinners [the imputation of Adam’s Original Sin], so also through the obedience of that one [Jesus Christ] the many [believers in Christ] shall be made righteous [receive imputed righteousness at the point of salvation].
ὥσπερ γὰρ διὰ τῆς παρακοῆς τοῦ ἑνὸς ἀνθρώπου ἁµαρτωλοὶ κατεστάθησαν οἱ πολλοί, οὕτως καὶ διὰ τῆς ὑπακοῆς τοῦ ἑνὸς δίκαιοι κατασταθήσονται οἱ πολλοί.
“For as through one man’s disobedience”
1. This is a reference to the original sin of Adam in the garden.
2. Note the character of the original sin—disobedience to the authority of God.
3. Adam’s original sin resulted in both immediate spiritual death and the immediate acquisition of the old sin nature.
4. Adam’s perfect body became a body of corruption which is passed down to his offspring at physical birth through genetics.
5. The genetically formed old sin nature is the home for the imputation of Adam’s original sin to each member of the human race at birth. Thus, all become sinners at birth.
The new birth:
1. At the moment of salvation adjustment to the integrity of God through faith in Jesus Christ, God’s perfect righteousness is imputed to the believer so that blessing from the justice of God can have a target. The blessing received by all believers is called Logistical Grace Blessing.
2. However, the greater blessings from the justice of God remains potential until the believer attains capacity for these greater blessings through maximum doctrine resident in the soul.
Now the Law came in as a side issue [as a minor actor playing a minor role] in order that the transgression of Adam [Adam’s Original Sin] might be increase [the multiplication of personal sins]. But where personal sin increased [by the function of the Old Sin Nature] the grace [of God] increased in greater abundance.
νόµος δὲ παρεισῆλθεν ἵνα πλεονάσῃ τὸ παράπτωµα· οὗ δὲ ἐπλεόνασεν ἡ ἁµαρτία, ὑπερεπερίσσευσεν ἡ χάρις,
1. Paul who is the human author under the ministry of the Holy Spirit draws an analogy from Greek drama to describe the purpose and place of the Law in the plan of God.
2. The Law is analogous to an actor who enters the stage to play a minor role for though it defines sin, it has no power and does not provide a spiritual life.
3. Paul states that he was not even aware of the existence of the old sin nature apart from the tenth commandment. Romans 7:7, “Therefore to what conclusion are we forced? Is the Law sin? Definitely not! On the contrary, I was not cognizant of the sin nature except through the Law; for instance, I did not understand the lust pattern except the Law kept on saying, ‘You will not lust.’”
4. The Mosaic law demonstrates that we are spiritually dead at birth through defining personal sins in terms of the result of spiritual death.
That just as the sin nature has ruled in the sphere of spiritual death, so also the grace of God might rule through imputed righteousness [the basis of our spiritual life], because of eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
ἵνα ὥσπερ ἐβασίλευσεν ἡ ἁµαρτία ἐν τῷ θανάτῳ, οὕτως καὶ ἡ χάρις βασιλεύσῃ διὰ δικαιοσύνης εἰς ζωὴν αἰώνιον διὰ Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ τοῦ κυρίου ἡµῶν.
1 Peter 3:18, “For Christ also died [substitutionary spiritual death] for sins once and for all, the righteous as a substitute for the unrighteous so that He [Jesus Christ] might bring us to God [the Father] Jesus having been put to death in the flesh, but made alive [received a resurrection body] by agency of the Spirit.”