The First Adam and the Last Adam
Saw this and was impressed with the Messianic Jewish Perspective
Thought for the Week:
“God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him.” (Genesis 1:27) The yiddish collection of teaching called Tz’enah Ur’enah says, “Just as Adam was created in God’s image, so the Messiah is anointed by God, and God’s spirit will be upon him.” In this we learn that there is a direct correlation to be made between Adam and Messiah. God created Adam in His image. Paul writes of Yeshua, “He is the image of the invisible God” (Colossians 1:15). “‘The first man, Adam, became a living soul.’ The last Adam became a life-giving spirit” (1 Corinthians 15:45).
Paul explains that sin and death came to humanity as the result of one man’s sin. Though it is true that we are all guilty of sin, and we are all punished for our own misdeeds, the original introduction of disobedience came through our first father. Through one single act of disobedience, he forfeited his right to the Tree of Life and immortality. Therefore, death came through Adam, “even over those who had not sinned in the likeness of the offense of Adam,” (Romans 5:14) which is to say that everyone dies, whether they sin or not. An unborn child who dies (God forbid), though he never had the opportunity to commit sin, dies all the same.
It does seem frightfully unfair that one man’s single transgression should consign all humanity to death. But it is equally unfair that one man’s righteousness also offers all of humanity the reward of righteousness: “the right to the tree of life.” (Revelation 22:14)
For if by the transgression of the one, death reigned through the one, much more those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Yeshua Messiah. So then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to all men. For as through the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous. (Romans 5:17–19)
Adam’s name means “man.” As human beings, we are all sons of Adam, and we share in his physical nature, including the fallen aspects of it. We share in his condemnation. Messiah is also a son of Adam, sharing in Adam’s nature as it was prior to his disobedience and expulsion. He is in the form of the original man. Thus, the title “the Son of Adam”; that is, “The Son of Man.” He is a second Adam, and unlike this first Adam, He did not transgress. If the first Adam’s sin was sufficient to merit death for all mankind, the righteousness of Messiah—the last Adam—is sufficient to merit us life. “For as in Adam all die, so also in Messiah all will be made alive.” (1 Corinthians 15:22) And this life is not only a spiritual abstraction. It is the hope of eternal life through the resurrection of the dead. It is the reversal of Adam’s bane. We need only cast our allegiance with last Adam, the Life that gives spirit.