“And you He made alive, who were dead in trespasses and sins, in which you once walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience, among whom also we all once conducted ourselves in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, just as the others” (Ephesians 2:1-3 NKJ)
All mankind is born in sin, under the condemnation of sin
A person doesn’t go to hell because of being a murderer, or a thief, or liar, or a homosexual, or a transgender, or a rioter, or a looter or a communist, or a drunkard, or an adulterer, or for being a racist. None of these things is the reason for a person going to hell. All of these things are evidence of a person under the curses and condemnation of sin, of being a sinner; that is, one who is born a sinner, “a son of disobedience” and “by nature a child of wrath.” All mankind is born under the curse of sin and its condemnation, conceived and born in sin (Psalm 51:5) and are slaves to sin (Romans 3:9-20). What we do gives evidence of that sin nature and adds to the already guilt of sin because of the disobedience of our first parents, Adam and Eve (Romans 5:12-14; 3:19-20; Galatians 2:16; Psalm 14:2-3).
It is because of Adam’s disobedience as the Federal head of the human race that we are all born with a sin nature. Our rebellion, our hatred, our lusts and our evil ways are a part of who we are by nature. We don’t learn to lie, to steal, or to kill – these things are a part of our sin nature; imbedded in our heart from our conception in our mother’s womb. Did anyone have to teach a 2 year old to lie about taking a cookie without permission? No! It is evidence of our children’s sin nature. It is this inborn sin nature that causes us to be alienated us from God, our Creator (Romans 6:23; Psalm 5:4-6). This alienation from God is what is called spiritual death, which results in physical death and is the cause all of the infirmities of the body; not to mention, all the suffering and other evils that we experience in this life. Because we are sinners we are not right with God; that is, unrighteous. Being unrighteous we will not be able to stand in the presence of God; but rather separated from His grace, goodness and mercy in the eternal darkness and torment of hell, forever, as Jesus says in Matthew 25:30, 46. Man is hopelessly lost and helpless to himself.
Though man is helpless to help remedy his condemned state, there is hope. Hope comes not by the works of man clearing his guilt through good works, since that is impossible (Isaiah 64:6; Romans 3:20). It doesn’t come from changing the reality of who he is by “self-indentifying” as a “good or righteous person.” Nor is hope found in thinking that because God is a loving God He will overlook His justice to accept the sinner without His justice being satisfied. That would be contrary to His nature – He cannot go against who He is; otherwise, He would cease to be God. God cannot love at the expense of His justice; and He cannot be a just God at the expense of being a loving God. So, what is the remedy to this hopeless situation; hopeless, that is, from man’s perspective?
Hope is Found in Jesus Christ Alone
The answer is in the person and work of Jesus Christ. It is through Jesus Christ that God’s justice and love meet without one being sacrificed for the other. In Jesus Christ God’s justice is fully satisfied and His gracious love fully expressed toward sinners. God the Father sent God the Son into this world, who took on Him the very nature of man while remaining very God in the person of Jesus Christ. It is because Jesus Christ is very man and very God He was able to bear in His human nature on the cross the eternal wrath of God against sin on behalf of all for whom He died. On the cross Jesus Christ fully satisfied once and for all time the justice of God and as a result obtained the grace of God, the forgiveness of sins, righteousness, salvation and everlasting life. How do we know this? Three days after He died and was buried He was raised again from the dead – Jesus Christ was “. . . delivered up because of our offenses, and was raised because of our justification” (Romans 4:25 NKJ). His resurrection tells us His death on the cross satisfied God’s justice; paid fully the penalty for sin on behalf of many sinners. Through this act of grace for the sinner, Jesus Christ did what the sinner could not do for himself; reconciling God to the sinner, and gaining the sinner access to God by His blood.
By the grace of God through the preaching of the gospel the Holy Spirit mysteriously and mightily applies the blood of Jesus Christ to the sinner, washing away the stain and guilt of sin. Having removed the guilt of sin far from the sinner, the sinner is declared justified and clothed with the robe of Christ’s righteousness. The state of the sinner is changed. He or she is no longer under the state of the condemnation and death, but is set free from sin’s condemnation and bondage and transferred to a state of life and freedom, as an adopted child of God and an heir of eternal life.
Sinners are Saved by Grace Alone Through Faith in Jesus Christ Alone
Sinners are, therefore, saved by grace through the precious blood that was shed on the cross on their behalf. Won’t you this day repent of your sin and come by faith alone to Jesus Christ embracing with your whole heart all the benefits He obtained for sinners, like you and me? If you will come to Him by faith alone resting in His one sacrifice alone for your salvation and everlasting life then you will possess an eternal inheritance, eternal life, in Christ, and begin in this life to know the joy of belonging to Him who is both just and justifier of all who is in Jesus Christ by faith (Romans 3:26); to no longer serve sin but rather to serve Him who saved you in a life of thankfulness to Him and a love for Him and your neighbor.