Under the Hood: How Justification Works
Romans 5:12-21


Death through Adam's sin to us in Adam; life through Christ's righteousness to us in Christ
Death thru Adam's sin to us in Adam; life thru Christ's righteousness to us in Christ

You are part of an on-going story of the triumph of God's grace over sin. At birth, Adam was your spiritual head; if your faith is in Christ, He has become your spiritual head. Justification of the saints works the same way universal condemnation works: by proxy. "As we are condemned on account of what Adam did, we are justified on account of what Christ did." - Charles Hodge


The two sets, under Adam and under Christ, are invariable combinations: sin, condemnation, and death are always found together; and righteousness, justification, and life are always found together. The two sets are parallel but antithetical (opposed in character and purpose). They are similar in their principles of operation but contrary to each other in every other way.

Sin-condemnation-death to all through AdamRighteousness-justification-life to all through Christ
In Eden, we're not born yet; we can't decide what to do.In eternity past, before Creation, we weren't born yet; we couldn't decide what to do.
Adam is appointed our representative to decide for us all. When God looks at Adam, He sees all mankind.The Son of God is appointed our representative. When God looks at Christ, He sees all the chosen. By implication, His incarnation is planned; He will become one of us so that He can justly represent us.
By defying God's authority, Adam declared war on God on our behalf, and we were all made God's enemies. The status of all mankind became: at war with God.By surrendering His life, taking on Himself the wrath of the Father against our sins, we were reconciled to God. The status of the chosen became: at peace with God.
The sentence for rebellion is death. That is how, when Adam sinned, we all fell under the death penalty.The gift of God is eternal life. As Christ was raised from the grave in a glorified body, so our spirits are raised to new life.

01 September 2002
David J. Finnamore
Orlando, FL