Bruce Collins, Evangelist

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The Influence One Person has in Life


Meditation for the week of June 14, 2009

Romans 5:19
For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man’s obedience many will be made righteous.

Years ago, when the world was in its infancy, Eve made a decision; and then Adam, her husband, made the same decision.  They decided to disobey God.  Eve made the decision because Satan deceived her.  Adam made the decision because he loved his wife and didn’t want to lose her (See 1 Timothy 2:14).  He was willing to leave paradise because of his love for his wife, and that is exactly what Christ was willing to do for His bride (the church) as well.  The difference was that Adam sinned while Christ did not.

However, that one sin has brought sorrow and death into this society that we live in.  All of mankind faces death and many of us face many kinds of sorrows all because of the one sin of one man.   I wonder if Adam knew what we now know, if he would have made the decision that he made.  Because of the sin of one man, Cain would kill Abel, ultimately man’s heart would be evil continually (Genesis 6:5), the earth would be filled with violence and God would finally have to say, “Enough!” and bring the destruction of the flood.  The coming tribulation period with all of its wars and destruction will be the result of that one sin.  Look at the influence for evil one man had who would probably be considered a good man by our society today. 

Adam and Eve were not the first sinners.  Satan had sinned before them, but he apparently was not a part of this society that God had created.   He had already rebelled against God before he influenced Adam and Eve to do the same.  So it was by Adam’s sin that sin entered into this society or world.  The angels had already experienced sin.  Adam was charged with this sin because he had been put in charge of this society.  

Satan is no one’s friend, but he appears to be friendly.  He uses “philosophy and vain deceit (Colossians 2:8)” to rob us of our God given blessings.  Philosophy is man’s logic based on what man thinks is right.  A philosopher will usually start his sentences with “I think” or “It seems to me”.  A man who wants to please God starts his sentences with “God says” or “the Bible says.”  Vain deceit is just empty lies; but when Satan lies, he tells us what we want to hear.  Because of that, often we are not discerning when He is getting us to question the truth of Scripture or the ultimate goodness of God.

But there is another man, and He had great influence for good.  The man Christ Jesus was obedient and because of His obedience many will be made righteous.  Here we have a lesson in Bible interpretation.  We cannot go to a dictionary to find the meaning of the word many in a technical sense and understand this verse.  The first many obviously means all.  We know that is the Biblical message.  All have sinned (Romans 3:23).  All we like sheep have gone astray (Isaiah 53:6).  But just because Christ died, not all are saved or made righteous.  But the many who are made righteous will be made righteous by one man’s obedience.  And that is also the Biblical message.  We have to believe on the Lord in order to be made righteous as we read in Romans 3:22-23, “Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.”  When God says many are made sinners, He means all everywhere.  When He says many will be made righteous, He means all everywhere who believe.

We all influence others.  Adam’s sin affected everyone everywhere.  Christ’s obedience has provided salvation for everyone everywhere.  But righteousness is only obtained by those who are  willing to believe on Him.  We are all affecting people every day.  Each individual is ultimately personally responsible for his or her own relationship with God, but it would certainly hurt me to know that my sin or hypocrisy was their excuse to turn away from the Lord.

Bruce Collins

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