As we have already seen in Romans 3:23, all men (everyone) have sinned (born with a sin nature) and therefore cannot measure up to God’s holy standards. That being said, then the natural question that should follow is “What is the result of man’s sin?”. To find the answer to that question let’s again look at what God’s Word has to say about it. Again, in his letter to the Romans, Paul perfectly describes what man can expect as a result of his sin condition. The first half of verse 23 in chapter 6 of Romans makes the assertion “For the wages of sin is death,” and from that we discover a number of important truths. Let’s break it down into two simple observations.
First , he uses the word ‘wages’ to infer that whatever the result of our sin, it is something we actually earn. In other words, man gets what he deserves because of his sin and is responsible and accountable for what he receives. Neither God nor any other man is responsible for our sin and therefore we must settle for what we have earned. The word picture is used to make this very clear.
Secondly, the word ‘death’ is used to describe the ultimate result of our sin. When one thinks or speaks of death, most of the time it is in the physical sense that it is being considered. This is certainly true because of the sin nature we have inherited as result of Adam and Eve’s sin in the garden. Remember, God had said they would surely die if they ate of the fruit from the forbidden tree. If you read the rest of the story in Genesis you will see that eventually they indeed died a physical death and no longer had a presence on the earth. But is that all there is to the death that Paul talks about in his letter? I think not.
There is another result of man’s sin that is worse than physical death. We know this as spiritual death and that simply means the eternal separation from God. God desires to have an intimate relationship with every person that has ever been born or to be born but man’s sinful condition doesn’t allow that to happen. We must remember that God is holy and cannot have any association with sin. Therefore man has what appears to be a hopeless situation because his sin nature can only do what is natural and that is to sin. So eternal separation from God is our ultimate destiny after physical death and it is what we have earned as sinners. The sad thing about this situation is that there is nothing any of us can do to bring an end to this dilemma. Unless a miracle takes place in our lives we are doomed because ‘the wages of sin is death.”
We now see that we all our sinners and cannot have a relationship with God in that condition. We also see that the ultimate result of our condition is physical death and with that comes spiritual death, eternal separation from God with no hope. The question then becomes ” How can God be a God of love and leave us in that condition?” Well take heart. Next week we will take a look at the rest of verse 23 and see what Paul has to say about a possible solution to our problem. Remember, God still desires a relationship with each of us.
The Bible declares in Romans 3:23 “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God” in which two things are made very obvious to the reader. One, the word all is used to mean all men with no exceptions from Adam forward. Two, that because of sin, man is no position to have a relationship (comes short of the glory of) with the Creator of the universe and all things therein. Because God is holy He can’t have any part of sin. In other words, a great gulf exists between God and man as a result of sin and man can’t span that gulf.
One of the questions we can ask ourselves then is ‘How did man get in this predicament’? Well, to answer that, we must understand and believe the Creation story in the book of Genesis and realize that God made Adam and breathed into him His own breath of life. Therefore Adam was innocent at the time he was created and Eve being made by God from Adam’s rib was also innocent. What does it mean they were innocent? That means that in the beginning they had pure hearts and motives because that had a relationship with their creator and thus had not been exposed to anything contrary to God’s nature. So, what happened? Let’s see if we can answer that question.
God created Adam after he had created everything else and He said that what He had created was good but His creation of man was “very good”. He then gave to Adam charge of a beautiful garden He had created and He instructed Adam to take care of all the trees in it. However, He had placed in the garden one tree that was hands off. God gave Adam clear instructions eat of the fruit from that tree which He called the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. So far so good so what’s the problem?
The bible says that the serpent was more crafty than any beast in the field and he approached Eve with a simple question. A paraphrased version of the question goes something like this; “Did God really say that you couldn’t eat of every tree in the garden?” Eve answered him exactly like he knew she would; “God said we cannot eat of the tree in the middle of the garden because we will surely die if we do.” The statement that the serpent makes next was the clincher. “You will not die. God knows that when you eat of that tree you will like Him, knowing the difference between good and evil. The stage is now set for man to make a choice between believing God or the lie of Satan himself and the rest history.
The bible says that Eve took and ate of the fruit and then gave some to Adam and he followed suit. It also says that they eyes were then opened and they knew that they were naked. The shame of their nakedness made them aware that they need to cover themselves. Their innocence had disappeared and they knew that the relationship they once had with the Creator was gone. Thus sin entered the human race through one man Adam and every person born since that time has inherited the sin nature that resulted from their actions. Since that time the gulf has existed between God and man.
Next week we will find out the result of sin and if there is a solution to man’s problem. Our reference verse will be Romans 6:23.
“For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
One of the things that concerns me the most these days is that I don’t hear a clear presentation of the gospel from the pulpit anymore. For that very reason I believe many opportunities are being missed to see people saved in our churches today. Of course, my observation is based on hearing only one person preaching at the church I have been attending but I hear the same complaint from members of other local churches.
It appears to me that many of the younger preachers seem to be carefully presenting the gospel in such a way that leads one to believe that somehow the theology has changed from what I have known for many years. I think many church members (Christians?) these days do not have an understanding of what the real gospel is and therefore they don’t know any difference. Any attempt to question what is being presented results in the questioner being labeled as a whiner and complainer.
Over the next few weeks I plan to discuss what I believe is the real Gospel and will back that up with God’s Word. I will use what is commonly referred to as the Roman Road and we will see where it takes us. So, be ready next week for a discussion on man’s inherited condition as described in Romans 3:23.
“For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God”
The Saturday Evening Post has taken on a new look. The previous version of the post was used as a communications tool for the Senior Men’s Sunday School Class (Old Timers) at Parkview Baptist Church and was published for over three years. That version has now been archived but all the former posts can still be found by using the following link:
The new post will have a different format. I hope to use it to encourage and minister to the reader. At times it may be that I just share what’s on my heart or what God has been dealing with me about. Other times I may be just getting up on my soapbox and saying what I think about a particular issue. Whatever may be the case I hope you enjoy it and will comment when you have something to say.
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The first official post will follow.