Adam was the biggest letdown, and his rebellion doomed all of us to imperfection and death. Jesus was as good as Adam was bad, and then some. How is it, then, that he can be called the last Adam?
And so it is written; the first Adam was made a living soul; The last Adam was made a quickening spirit. 1 Cor 15:45
If you have been conditioned to believe in the Trinity, you will never understand that scripture. Jesus, say the Trinitarians, is equal to God. He is God, only in a different form. So how can he be termed the last Adam?
Set aside the Trinity belief, and the picture clears instantly.
The key is to recognize that Jesus was a perfect man. That’s why he was born of a virgin, with Joseph merely the foster father. Had he been born in the usual manner, he would have been imperfect, same as all the rest of Adam’s descendants. He would not have corresponded in any way to Adam. It would have been apples and oranges.
And if Jesus is God, again we have apples and oranges. Adam and Jesus only correspond if we recognize that they were both perfect men, the only two perfect men that have ever been.
This is a huge point to recognize, because it enables understanding of a central Christian teaching: how does Jesus’ death benefit mankind. Without this one-to-one correspondence, all you can get is a touchy-feely answer to that question, one that pulls at the heart but does nothing for the head.
God sent his son to die, Trinitarians say, to show his love for humans. Yeah, okay, but why that and not something else?
Because God wanted to give the most precious thing he had, is the answer. Yeah, but….why not throw in all the angels as well, and the stars? Wouldn’t that show even more love?
No, that explanation may tug at the heart, but it does nothing for the head. It contributes to the John Coffey (J.C.)…like the drink, but spelled differently….image of Christianity: Christians are big on heart, with lots of hope, and boundless good will….but they’re really not too smart.
The Trinity teaching seriously interferes, even prevents, understanding this key Bible point. But if you make Jesus a perfect man, you get a result that satisfies the heart and the mind.
Adam was not created to die. Endless life was before him. When he rebelled, he pulled the plug on himself. But not just himself, also all his offspring….all of us. No longer would anyone look forward to endless life, now their certain destiny was old age and death. He sold them, Adam did. He sold them into the slavery of sin and death. And there they must stay, unless someone can buy them back.
A perfect man sold them into slavery, another perfect man will be needed as the repurchase price. Not another disobedient one like Adam, but a faithful perfect man, as Jesus proved to be.
You can’t find any perfect men among Adam’s offspring, they’re all imperfect. Only if God sends a heavenly son, his first born, to be born as a human, of a virgin, and so free from Adam’s imperfect heritage, can that perfect man be found. And that’s what God did.
When you free a kidnapped victim, the price you pay is called the ransom. The ransom price paid to release all of us from bondage to sin and death is a perfect human life, exactly corresponding to the perfect human life Adam threw away. Offering his own perfect life, Jesus bought back what Adam lost, he died for our sins. Now the expression died for our sins makes some sense. Jesus’ life is the ransom price needed to redeem enslaved mankind, and it is the exact price required, thus ransom carries the sense of completely covering….not too much and not too little.
When it comes to righting the greatest wrong ever, God plays by the same rules he made for us: an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth, a soul for a soul…..in this case, a perfect soul for a perfect soul. (Deut 19:21) Thus, the “legal” framework is in place to restore everlasting life on earth to those who desire it.
The Son Of Man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many. Matt 20:28
For there is one god, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; who gave himself a ransom for all. 1 Tim 2:5,6