Covenant and Salvation (3)

How Serious is Sin?

In the previous lessons we have been looking at why God saved mankind.  God intended for man to glorify Him throughout creation by bearing His image and by enjoying communion with Him.  This exalted position was established in the Covenant of Life (also known as the Covenant of Works) that God made with Adam.  Adam possessed true knowledge, original holiness, and righteousness relative to God Himself and to creation.  Adam would have gone on to an even more intimate communion with God had he passed his probation of temptation in the Garden of Eden by speaking God’s word to his wife and to the serpent and by expelling the serpent to maintain the sanctity of the Garden.  Adam, however, failed in his role as God’s original Prophet, Priest and King thereby plunging himself and his posterity into a state of corruption that affected all humanity.  Adam’s sin was not simply transgression against God’s laws, nor just falling short of what God intended for man.  Rather, it was—and still is—personal rebellion against and a direct affront to God Himself.  For this reason, God utterly hates sin and is right to judge it.

Adam and Eve Driven from Eden

We looked at these things because there is a persistent tendency for people—even Christians—to denigrate the pre-Fall high status of man, deny the seriousness of sin, and dismiss the idea of God as judge.  Such tendencies eviscerate the Gospel.  At the same time, this background sets the stage for why salvation is necessary.  Indeed, God has not given up on having communion with His people.  God’s work of salvation was thus needed to restore His people in terms of their position before Him and to renew His image in them. 

Handouts and Notes for Lecture 3

Handout for Lecture 4

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