February 10, 2008pm   Dying to Live   Romans 5:12-19
By Ronald E. George Jr. at the Fayetteville Baptist Church

The divine paradox:  It is better to give than receive.  How can it dying be good?  How can we die in order to live. 

Romans 5:12 Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because all sinned— 13 for before the law was given, sin was in the world. But sin is not taken into account when there is no law. 14 Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who was a pattern of the one to come.
15 But the gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many! 16 Again, the gift of God is not like the result of the one man’s sin: The judgment followed one sin and brought condemnation, but the gift followed many trespasses and brought justification. 17 For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ.
18 Consequently, just as the result of one trespass was condemnation for all men, so also the result of one act of righteousness was justification that brings life for all men. 19 For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.

  1. The Beginning of Death:  Death was the product of the gift of free will that God gave to Adam and to Eve.  Death is the wages or result of sin.   Gen.3:1  Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, "Did God really say, `You must not eat from any tree in the garden'?"  2  The woman said to the serpent, "We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden,  3  but God did say, `You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will  die .'"  4  "You will not surely  die ," the serpent said to the woman.  5  "For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil."       …..      Gen.3;17  To Adam he said, "Because you listened to your wife and ate from the tree about which I commanded you, `You must not eat of it,'  "Cursed is the ground because of you;  through painful toil you will eat of it  all the days of your life.  18  It will produce thorns and thistles for you,  and you will eat the plants of the field.  19  By the sweat of your brow  you will eat your food  until you return to the ground,  since from it you were taken;  for dust you are  and to dust you will return."

 

  1. The purpose of Death:  Hebrews 9: 27  Just as man is destined to  die  once, and after that to face judgment,  28  so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many people; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him. Death comes to all so that all may live.  Passing on from this life to the next affords us the opportunity to live again.  Just as Jesus gave up his life then we must give up ours so that we can take it up again.   This second life is far greater than the first.  The caterpillar must die in the cocoon to become born again. 
  1. The law revealed sin and death:  The purpose of the law was to show us how far we have gone from God.  God who is the source of our life, because he is the creator and the originator of all life, is also the giver of life.  We have all sinned and come short of the glory of God.  So therefore since we have left the source of life we must be brought back to live again.  God provides the way for us to come back.  He is called our salvation and his name is Jesus.  The price had to be paid.  The price or the wages of sin is death.  Jesus paid it all.  He is our redeemer or the one who has paid back our price of life. 

 

  1. The Gift is life after death:  The gift of life was given to all who believe.  It is the gift of salvation.  Because of the sin of one man named Adam death came to all.  But because one man named Jesus died so that all may have life and may have it more abundantly.  The gift was far greater than the sin so that it overflows to all the world so that all may be saved.  It is not God’s will that any should perish but that all may come to repentance.  He died so that we may live.  We have received Him and the gift that He gives which is the gift of God who is life.  We may live again.  We have been born again.  We have new life in Christ Jesus our Lord. 
  1. The divine paradox says that it is better to give than to receive.  Is it better to give your life than to receive your life?    John 12:23  Jesus replied, "The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.  24  I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds.  25  The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life.  26  Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me.      Would we be willing than we should die so that others would live?  Would we be willing to give up our lives and become the living sacrifice for the lives of those we would love and long to save?  Jesus said to take up your cross and follow him.  If we take up our cross and give our lives then others may receive Him.   Are we ready to give up our wants and desires for others?  Are we ready to sacrifice ourselves for someone else?  Is it better to give than to receive? 

The Holy Bible : New International Version (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1996, c1984). Ro 5:12-19.