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Read:  Romans 5:18-19

“18 Therefore just as one man’s trespass led to condemnation for all, so one man’s act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all. 19 For just 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.”

It was Benjamin Franklin who first said, “… in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.”  It’s tax day!  Well, it used to be before the US government pushed back the date for filing to July 15th, due to the impact of the COVID 19 virus.  Nevertheless, Benjamin Franklin’s premise seems safe with regard to taxes these 231 years later.  But how about death?  The resurrection of Jesus Christ seems to draw that into question. Has that oldest of human foes, sin and death, both have been drained of their power?  Paul thinks so, writing, “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death.” (Romans 8:1-2).  Paul goes on to further explain how Christ redeems humanity.

In Romans 5 Paul takes us back to the Garden of Eden and Adam (“Adam” means “man”) and makes the argument that just as the act of sin by one man (Adam) led to the fall of many, even all – so the act of redemption by one man (Christ) will lead to redemption and life for all.  The power of sin and death are defeated by Christ.  Now, some will say, “but there is still sin, and there is still death”.  Yes, but they have lost their power.  As one scholar puts it, “Sin remains, but no longer reigns”. 

Faith in this good news has led some to live fearlessly.  That’s good, but fearlessly should not mean carelessly. Healthy faith helps us live life with assurance and to live purposefully.  That is the place in our faith we want to strive toward.

I want to close with a glimpse of the Christ’s Kingdom from Rev. 21:3b-4, “See, the home of God is among mortals. He will dwell with them; they will be his peoples, and God himself will be with them; he will wipe every tear from their eyes. Death will be no more; mourning and crying and pain will be no more, for the first things have passed away.”

Shalom,

Pastor Rob Nystrom