Christ Our Provision (continued)
In Christ - The Redemption of the Race (continued)
God's Second Man, the Representative Man, took the sinner's place in condemnation. The absolutely perfect Law-keeper has taken the punishment of the most wicked lawbreaker. The full curse of the law was expended upon Him. Thereby every claim of the law was fully satisfied and the way of acquittal from all condemnation was made available to every sinner who would put forth in the crucified Saviour (Galatians 3:13).
But cancellation of guilt was but the negative side of redemption. The last Adam is to be Head of a new race "made righteous" in His righteousness. Justification provides not only deliverance from the old-standing "in Adam," but also the placing of the redeemed in the new standing "in Christ." Christ has become his righteousness and he is "accepted in the Beloved" (Romans 3:24; Ephesians 1:6; 1 Corinthians 1:30).
The one who is "in Christ" has written over his life for time and for eternity those two glorious words "no condemnation (Romans 8:1). "In Christ" he stands before God as perfectly freed from sin as though he had never sinned. He now has a relationship to God in which sin has nothing to say (Romans 5:1). Negatively, the law has no claim against the redeemed. But more than that, he stands before God in the perfect righteousness of the altogether righteous One.
In Eden God judged Adam's sin. Adam was driven out of the garden. Access to the tree of life was made impossible. Not only was access to God ended but the wrath of God rested upon Adam (Genesis 3:24; Romans 1:18; Ephesians 5:6).
"The wrath of God" - what terrifying words! We tremble before them. How can there be any escape for an altogether ungodly and unrighteous humanity from so terrible a thing as the wrath of God, especially in the light of God's statement that knowing full well His displeasure, they not only continue in their wickedness, but even take pleasure in doing so? (Romans 1:32).
Is there any possible way of escape from the wrath of God and its inevitable judgment? Again on the authority of God's Word we declare that there is but one way: the way which only the infinite grace of God could have provided (Romans 5:20, 21).
But it must be a way that will close hell and open heaven to the most ungodly and unrighteous. Can the grace of God compass that? Yes, infinite grace working through infinite love has bridged the otherwise impassable gulf between hell and heaven through God's second Man, the Representative Man, who went not only "the second mile" but the last mile in the work of redemption, by taking the sinner's place in judgment.
(continued with # 62)