“Yes, Adam’s one sin brings condemnation for everyone, but Christ’s one act of righteousness brings a right relationship with God and new life for everyone. Because one person disobeyed God, many became sinners. But because one other person obeyed God, many will be made righteous.”
Romans 5:18-19 NLT
What does “condemnation” feel like? We looked yesterday at the analogy of a prisoner in the dock about to be condemned to an eternal life sentence, but suddenly declared not guilty when Someone stepped forward to take the punishment in our place. But without that gracious act, we would have been condemned. Rightfully of course. The Judge is fair and incorruptible. The evidence of our guilt indisputable. There is only one possible verdict. There is no miscarriage of justice possible. An appeal to a higher court disallowed, because there isn’t one. Without Jesus we have no hope.
The condemned will spend eternity in a place called Hell. It will be a place of eternal torment. A place of fire and heat. The devil will be there, hardly an attractive thought. And God won’t be there of course. And there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. All glimpses of a terrible place that we can find in the Bible. Most of what we know about hell came from Jesus. But most unbelievers today don’t believe in a place called hell. There is whole raft of expectations, ranging from obscurity and nothing after we die, through to everyone will end up in a place called Heaven. All with little evidence to support their views. Death and what happens afterwards is not a popular topic for conversation down the pub, or on the bus.
But we won’t dwell on such a place. Rather, we focus on what Jesus did for us. “Christ’s one act of righteousness brings a right relationship with God and new life for everyone”. The contrast between Adam and Jesus is stark. One brought sin into the world. The Other dealt with it in “one act of righteousness”. The condemned are released into a new life with God. A life we can start to experience here in the time we have left in our natural lives. And after that we have an assurance that we will find a new existence in God’s presence, along with all our brothers and sisters who also put their faith in our amazing Saviour.
Dear Lord Jesus. What You did for us at Calvary surpasses any other event that has ever taken place on this planet. We are so grateful. Amen.