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Original Sin (2)

Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me (Ps. 51:5).

Last time, we saw that, as the organic head of the human race, Adam brought forth (with Eve) the entire human race. He is the father of all men. Because he was the organic head of the human race, the punishment Adam received from God was brought upon all men. Adam, as the punishment for his sin, was killed by God ("the day thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die;" Gen. 2:17). He was killed physically and spiritually. His physical death brought him (later) to the grave. His spiritual death made him totally depraved, alienated from God, and eventually would have brought him into hell—if God had not saved him.  Romans 5:14 tells us that Adam was the figure of Him who was to come, that is, our Lord Jesus Christ. Christ is the legal and organic head of His elect people. As their legal head, He represented His people when He was born of a virgin, suffered and died on the cross, rose again from the grave, and ascended into heaven. What Christ did for His elect people (as Paul makes clear in Romans 5) is what His people actually did in Him. The apostle speaks, in Romans 6, of dying with Christ, being buried with Christ, and being raised with Christ. All Christ did is, in the sight of God, what we do.

As our organic head, Christ, through the work of the Spirit, makes all His elect, for whom He died, one body with him, united to Him by a living faith. Thus, all that Christ did for us, as our legal head, is actually given us because He is our organic head. "For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive" (I Cor. 15:21-22).

David was conscious of the fact that the explanation of his sins of adultery and murder was his participation in and responsibility for Adam’s sin. So conscious was he of this that he confessed this sin as his own. This confession of David, recorded in Psalm 51, is a confession which every child of God must and does make. Heidelberg Catechism A. 54 makes a point of this truth, when, in its discussion of the article of the Apostle’s Creed, "I believe in the forgiveness of sins," it states: "That God, for the sake of Christ’s satisfaction, will no more remember my sins, neither my corrupt nature, against which I have to struggle all my life long ..." The Catechism teaches that our corrupt natures have to be forgiven, and are forgiven, for the sake of Christ’s perfect sacrifice. If our corrupt natures are not forgiven, we would go to hell because of them (even an infant who dies at birth and does not commit any actual sin), because we are responsible for them.

And so we must look at the whole matter from God’s point of view. God causes conception in the womb of our mothers. According to His eternal purpose, God gives to each man the gift of life in the world and a place in His creation. This is a great gift for which we ought to be thankful, for through the creation God Himself is to be known and worshipped. But we corrupted ourselves, first by our sin in Adam and then by our actual sins. We are, because of these sins, undeserving sinners.

But God is rich in mercy and grace towards all them that fear Him and forsake their sins. He gave His own Son who is our head and who accomplishes for us what we could never do. In Adam we fell. But in Christ we, undeserving sinners, are saved. So let us confess our original sin (Ps. 51:5), as well as our other sins, and receive forgiveness according to God’s tender mercies.

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Additional Info

  • Volume: 10
  • Issue: 15
Hanko, Herman

Prof. Herman Hanko (Wife: Wilma)

Ordained: October 1955

Pastorates: Hope, Walker, MI - 1955; Doon, IA - 1963; Professor to the Protestant Reformed Seminary - 1965

Emeritus: 2001

Website: www.sermonaudio.com/search.asp?speakeronly=true&currsection=sermonsspeaker&keyword=Prof._Herman_Hanko

Contact Details

  • Address
    725 Baldwin Dr. B-25
  • City
    Jenison
  • State or Province
    MI
  • Zip Code
    49428
  • Country
    United States
  • Telephone
    616-667-6033

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