Wait, What? How Can One Man Save All? (Romans 5:12-17)


Romans 5:12-17
12 Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned—13 To be sure, sin was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not charged against anyone’s account where there is no law. 14 Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who is a pattern of the one to come.
15 But the gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many! 16 Nor can the gift of God be compared with the result of one man’s sin: The judgment followed one sin and brought condemnation, but the gift followed many trespasses and brought justification. 17 For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ!

God started the chapter talking about the incredible grace of God: how Christ died for us when we were still sinners. But there is a natural question that everyone asks: “How could Jesus die for me personally? He’s only one man and there are billions of people?” So the Bible answers that question. There are many things we will never know about God while we’re on this earth. However, the Bible answers every question anyone will have about having a relationship with Him. So if the question you have is “How is it possible all can be saved from their sins from one man dying for them?” here’s your answer:
One perfect person can save all sins because one perfect person sinned.
Whether you believe the literal account of Adam and Eve or not, there is one reality there: there was no sin at one time, but there was always free will. One person chose themselves over God, and that not only caused death for them, it opened up the possibility for all to sin. And, once sin was possible, everyone sinned (Romans 3).
When we think about that, it makes total sense: one person brought sin into the world–and all chose sin because of it. So one person can take sin out of the world–and all now have a choice to be saved.
Jesus got up every day and chose God over himself. He chose self-control over anger. He chose loving others over hatred. He chose to be honest when he was tempted to lie. He lived every moment of every day sinless. Then he traded his righteousness for our sin as a gift–a gift for all mankind, but even better than that. He traded his righteousness for our sins individually. And it isn’t just a one-time forgiveness. It’s an all-time forgiveness. We’ll talk more about that in our next post.

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