Adam vs Christ


This message will compare what we have in Adam in contrast to what we have in Christ (Romans 5:12-21).  Having a solid understanding of these things will give us a firm foundation of faith in which to build our lives upon.

Romans: The Glory of the Gospel Part 13

Adam Vs. Christ – Romans Rom 5:12-21

Mosaic Rockford – Dave Spooner – Nov. 19th, 2017



  • Last week in the first half of Romans chapter 5, we came to a fuller understanding of what we have through Christ: justification by faith, peace with God, access to grace, and the ability to rejoice in hope and in suffering. We came to understand that God’s love was shown to us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us, the righteous for the unrighteous, love to make us lovely. Not only did God show His great love for us by giving His son as a sacrifice for our sin, He also, through Christ, helped us to restore the right relationship through reconciliation with God.
  • In the section we are looking to this morning (the second half of Romans 5) the Holy Spirit through Paul contrasts the life and legacy of Adam with the life and legacy of Christ to further illustrate and highlight what we have in and through Christ.
  • Through this passage we gain the understanding of how our natural and spiritual heritage connect and contrast to one another.


Sin and death through Adam


Rom 5:12-14 ESV

Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned— 13 for sin indeed was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not counted where there is no law. 14 Yet death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those whose sinning was not like the transgression of Adam, who was a type of the one who was to come.


  • Through the sin of Adam, death spread to all because in Adam, all sinned.
    • Adam was the first human. God gave Adam dominion over the earth and everything on it (Gen. 1:26-29). Adam was the “gatekeeper and caretaker” of everything. The earth and everything in it was given to him.
    • Adam was made differently from everything and everyone else. God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness” (Gen. 1:26) and “The Lord God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature” (Gen 2:7).
    • Everyone else came from Adam. Eve was formed from his rib, and from them, we are all descendants.
    • When Adam (not Eve) sinned, the payment for his sin came (Death). Death then came to us all, because we all were in Adam, so we all received the consequence.  Adam was the head and representative of us all.
  • Sin was in the world before the law was given by God through Moses to the people. When the law was given, both the law and results were clearly defined.  Up until that point there was one law (do not eat of the tree) and there was also the law of the conscience – there was murder (Cain) and evil/wickedness etc. (during the days of Noah) and beyond.
  • Adam’s sin was different because it disobeyed a direct command which was first. Whereas the sins the followed were of a different kind (of conscience) but the same consequence (death) remained and reigned during the whole period of time.
  • Adam was a “type” of the one who was to come – the one who was to come was Christ, the “second Adam.”


Grace and life through Christ


Rom 5:15-17 ESV

But the free gift is not like the trespass. For if many died through one man’s trespass, much more have the grace of God and the free gift by the grace of that one man Jesus Christ abounded for many. 16 And the free gift is not like the result of that one man’s sin. For the judgment following one trespass brought condemnation, but the free gift following many trespasses brought justification. 17 If, because of one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ.


  • What we received in Adam from our natural humanity and sinful nature is what we have earned based on our behavior: judgment and death.
  • What we receive in Christ is a free gift based on His grace to us that brings justification and life.
  • From our sinful nature given to us from Adam– death reigns.
  • But from our new nature given to us by Jesus Christ – life reigns.
  • 1 Cor 15:22-23 ESV For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive.
  • We have earned death by Adam’s choice and we can receive life by Christ’s choice. We are all born “in Adam” and we can also be “born again” in Christ.  Death “in Adam” is inevitable; life “in Christ” is available.


1 Cor 15:45-49  ESV

“The first man Adam became a living being”; the last Adam became a life-giving spirit. 46 But it is not the spiritual that is first but the natural, and then the spiritual. 47  The first man was from the earth, a man of dust; the second man is from heaven. 48 As was the man of dust, so also are those who are of the dust, and as is the man of heaven, so also are those who are of heaven. 49 Just as we have borne the image of the man of dust, we shall also bear the image of the man of heaven.


Condemnation and justification for all


Rom 5:18-21 ESV

Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men. 19 For as by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous. 20 Now the law came in to increase the trespass, but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, 21 so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.


  • One trespass (Adam in the Garden) led to condemnation and death for all. One act of righteousness (Christ in the garden) led to justification and life for all.
    • Again, death is inevitable and life is available but not all follow this path.
  • By one man’s disobedience many were made sinners. By one man’s obedience, many will be made righteous.
  • The grace of God is sufficient to cover all sins (God’s grace is enough – it is a free gift that must be received, but it can never be earned. It will not run out or be insufficient – grace “abounds” super-abounds – it is superabundant).
  • Sin reigned in death. Grace reigns through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.


Adam Jesus
Of Earth Of Heaven
Chose to Sin Chose to become Sin
Took from a tree Gave on a tree
Disobedient Obedient
Condemnation Justification
Made People Sinful Made People Righteous
Death Reigns Life Reigns
Live to Die Die to Live


  • Sin and death are the result of our sinful nature. Any other religion, person, or self-help system outside of Christ will ultimately result in death. They are false prophets with false messages that keep people from recognizing and receiving the true Savior.  At best, they are just rearranging furniture and redecorating rooms on the Titanic. At worst, they are intentionally locking people into cells on a sinking ship.  There is no one or nothing like Jesus. “There is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” Acts 4:12 



  • Sin, judgment, condemnation and death come through Adam. Righteousness, grace, justification and eternal life come through Christ.
  • If you have given your life to Christ, continue to rejoice and live in Him. If you have not yet put your faith in Christ and have chosen to give your life to Him, I strongly encourage you to do so right now.
  • The first 5 chapters deal with sinfulness, wrath, righteousness and justification. The next section starting with chapter 6, has to do with our sanctification: how we are to live these things out in relationship to God and to each other. For the next 6 weeks over the Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s season, we will “push pause” on this series and pick it back up in the first Sunday in January.


Questions for the week ahead

  1. Compare what we have though Adam to what we have through Christ.
  2. What are the applications to your life from this comparison?