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Blog - All By Himself
"Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high;" - Heb 1:3 How many people does it take to make atonement for the sins of a person and give him eternal life? Just one, you say; Jesus paid it all, you say. And to that I say, amen! But let's make sure that's really what you believe. If Jesus paid it all and there is nothing left to pay, then what if a person does nothing, spiritually speaking, his whole life? Are his sins paid for and will he have eternal life in heaven when he dies? No, you say; he must accept Jesus as his personal savior in order to be saved. So, that being the case, it doesn't take just one person to make atonement for the sins of this man, but by your own admission, it takes two: Jesus and the man who accepts Him as his personal savior. Without both of them doing their part, that man will go to hell. But there may be more than just two; the man has to hear the gospel before he can believe it and accept Jesus, and in order to do that, it must be preached to him by a preacher, as it is written, "How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?" (Rom 10:14). So now we have at least three people taking part in the salvation of this man: Jesus, the man himself, and the preacher/soul winner. But what saith the scripture? How many people does the scripture say are involved in the salvation of a sinner? God is very clear on this one; there is one person, and one person only, who is responsible for a man being made righteous: "For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous." (Rom 5:19), and that one person is Jesus Christ (Rom 5:17). Let's have a closer look at Romans 5:19. The second half of that verse starts out with the word "so" which means "In the way or manner described, indicated, or suggested; in that style or fashion." By inserting the definition of so, we see the verse says "For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so (in the way or manner just described and in that style or fashion) by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous." The verse then is plainly stating that men are made righteous by the obedience of Jesus Christ in the same way and manner as they were made sinners by Adam's disobedience. Question: what did you have to do to be made a sinner by Adam? The answer is:...nothing...you inherited your sinful nature from Adam through his sin that was passed down to you via natural generation, as it is written, "Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:" (Rom 5:12). Did you have to accept Adam as your personal sinner to be made a sinner? Did you have a say in whether or not you were made a sinner? Did you have to do anything to inherit your sinful nature? The answer to all these questions is obviously NO! So we see it is undeniable that those who were made sinners by Adam were passive in that transaction, just as they were passive when their parents made them. Now that we know the manner in which men were made sinners by Adam's disobedience, and we know that men are made righteous by the obedience of Jesus Christ in the very same manner, let's ask the same questions again. What did you have to do to be made righteous by Jesus Christ? The answer is:...nothing...you inherited your righteousness from Christ when God "made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him." (2Co 5:21). Did you have to accept Jesus as your personal savior to be made righteous? Did you have a say in whether or not you were made righteous? Did you have to do anything to inherit your righteous spiritual nature? The answer to all these questions is obviously NO! So we see it is undeniable that those who were made righteous by Jesus Christ were passive in that transaction, just as they were passive when their parents made them. The analogy of the new spiritual birth of a child of God to natural birth is not just a concoction of someone's imagination; it is scriptural truth. Just as a baby is not born by his own will, but rather only by the will of his parents, so God's children "were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God." (Joh 1:12). God, "of his own will begat he us with the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures" (Jam 1:18). God "predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will" (Eph 1:5). We all know whose will is active when a child is adopted; it is the parents' will, not the child's, which decides who gets adopted and becomes the child of the parent. You are probably wondering by now where our belief and obedience fits into all this. Our believe and obedience is the evidence, not the cause, of our being born of God. The Bible says, "Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God..." (1Jo 5:1) and "...every one that doeth righteousness is born of him" (1Jo 2:29). Notice it doesn't say that whosoever believes that Jesus is the Christ and does righteousness gets or will be born of God, but rather is born of God. You see now that your belief and your obedience (doing righteousness) is the evidence, not the cause, of your being born of God. It should be clear now that the scripture plainly declares that God's children are His children by the sovereign will of God and by the obedience of Jesus Christ living a sinless life and dying on the cross for them. The scripture gives Jesus Christ all the credit and glory for saving sinners and making them righteous. He truly did it BY HIMSELF (Heb 1:3); "by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us" (Heb 9:12). Thank God that the eternal redemption of His children is an accomplished fact, not just a possibility. Thank God that Jesus didn't leave it up to us, and that our salvation is not by the obedience of two or three (because we could have never done it (Gal 3:10)), but rather that is by the obedience of one, all by Himself, "For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified." (Heb 10:14).