Union with Adam

The first sin of Adam is transferred to every human person (not when they are teenagers but when they are conceived). This transfer of guilt is not good news.

United to Adam by his guilt transferred to us, we then share Adam’s nature. To make the union something prior to sharing the guilt keeps begging several questions. Unless we know that a transfer of guilt is unjust, we have no reason to deny that our union with Adam is by legal imputation.

Transfer of guilt is union, and results in moral corruption and death. This depravity is not for the elect alone, because the guilt of Adam is not for the elect alone.

The gospel has a glorious transfer, which IS good news. Christ was not imputed with the corruption of the elect, but with their guilt. Even though corruption is part of the punishment for imputed guilt, Christ was not imputed with corruption but with guilt.

Even though many preachers focus on the supposed “spiritual death” that Jesus experienced in the three hours before He died , the emphasis of the Bible is that Christ Jesus bore the guilt of His people, the sins of the elect. The result of that was Christ’s death.

Christ did not have to be corrupt to be human. Nor did He have to be guilty to be human. This means that Christ can be and was imputed with the guilt of the elect alone, and not with the guilt of the non-elect.

The guilt transferred by God to Christ was not completely satisfied until Christ died on account of the sins of the elect.

Not only punishment for guilt, but guilt itself was transferred to Christ. The gospel talks about election, because the gospel talks about Christ bearing the sins of specific elect persons.

Isaiah 53:5 speaks of the punishment which brought us peace. But Isaiah 53:6 also tells us that “The Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us.” The servant Christ bore not only punishment but also iniquity.

By means of Roman and Jewish politicians, God punished Christ who was legally charged with all the sins of the elect. This is not unfair. It is good news but only for the elect.

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5 Comments on “Union with Adam”

  1. markmcculley Says:

    Legal imputation with the righteousness, being baptized into Christ’s death, is “actual” but actual does not mean “not legal” and it does not mean “transformed on the inside”. Therefore, Christ being “made sin” (II Cor 5:21) is not about something which is more real or actual than legal imputation. Christ did not become corrupt on the inside: Christ became guilty.

    Justification is not something which is “more than” legal declaration. Justification IS legal sharing in Christ’s righteousness, and thus being legally constituted righteous in God’s sight. Romans 5:18 Justification is alone (merely) legal.

    Also, condemnation for Adam’s sin is not corruption. Condemnation by sharing in Adam’s guilt is alone (merely) legal. The corruption which follows this imputation should not be confused with the imputation.

  2. markmcculley Says:

    Most Calvinists (even those who don’t teach eternal justification) do teach that “made alive” in Ephesians 2 is regeneration.

    Here are the options;
    1. new creation means regeneration only
    2. new creation means imputation and regeneration
    3. new creation means imputation only (but that results in regeneration)

    Of course how i set up the three options tells you I think 3

    What’s the “real” difference between saying 2 or 2?
    as long as we don’t leave out the legal?

    My answer: 2000 years ago, Christ did not become alive by regeneration: he was never corrupt, so the three texts are not about regeneration.

  3. markmcculley Says:

    A reader asks: Are gifts forced upon people?

    mark: Can people give gifts? Can a gift be given? Those are big questions, but the question for now is “can a sinner give God gift of helping God to save her?” Romans 11:35 “who has given a gift to God that God would repay”?

    You can say it’s not a quid pro quo, that’s it’s still a gift from God, that it’s not by our works but by our acceptance of the gift, but at the end of the day, you condition the salvation (thus the gifting) on the sinner.

    The reader writes that “A “Gift” has to be received by a choice to receive it”, but the “receiving” in Romans 5 is not by the sinner believing but by God imputing. How do we know that? Original guilt, the first sin of Adam imputed to us, is not received by our sinning, does not depend on our sinning. Guilt is received by God’s imputation, and we are guilty before we ever sin. To keep the parallel, the elect receive by imputation the legal worth of Christ’s obedient death. The source for believing the gospel is that imputation.

    The reader asks: is all all? Romans 5 is not talking about all sinners. All the elect become guilty by imputation, and that same all becomes justified by imputation. I am not denying that all the non-elect also become guilty by imputation, but that is not what Romans 5 is talking about.

    I don’t want to waste too much time answering the questions of a person who rejects the authority of Romans 5:12. Make no mistake. I like questions, but when they become a substitute for submitting to what the verse says, then we are wasting our time.

    To ask all or the elect is a waste of time, if you deny the first principle that guilt can be justly transferred by God to another. If you deny that, you deny both the law and the gospel.

    The reader asks: if all are are without excuse that God has made himself known to them, then isn’t it the penalty of their own sin and not Adam’s? Romans 1:20 and 27. Isn’t that kind of blame shifting?

    mark: This is a false dilemma. Agreeing that we are sinners with our own guilt in no way contradicts the imputation of Adam’s sin. What is blame-shifting is to look at that imputed guilt and to refuse the idea that it’s now your sin. You want to blame Adam, but you are now in legal solidarity with Adam’s sin.

  4. markmcculley Says:

    objective factual guilt can and is transferred legally but not as a “subtance” , and so is righteousness (which is God’s value placed on Christ’s death and thus transferred legally not as a substance) Christ did not become corrupt in his humanity, as some Lutherans teach when they teach that all humanity is “objectively justified” — here’s a link about the debate but the person on the “better side” is still teaching that all the sins of the world were transferred legally to Christ http://www.presenttruthmag.com/Judgment/88.html


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