On the Other Hand (Jesus is God)

Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned—  for sin indeed was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not counted where there is no law.  Yet death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those whose sinning was not like the transgression of Adam, who was a type of the one who was to come.

But the free gift is not like the trespass. For if many died through one man’s trespass, much more have the grace of God and the free gift by the grace of that one man Jesus Christ abounded for many.  And the free gift is not like the result of that one man’s sin. For the judgment following one trespass brought condemnation, but the free gift following many trespasses brought justification.  For if, because of one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ.  -Romans 5: 12-17

In some ways, Jesus is like Adam. By one man’s transgression, sin entered the world.  And by one man’s righteousness, victory over sin entered the world.  Adam and Jesus are alike in that both are a type of “first man.”  At the same time, they are total opposites if you think about it.  Adam was the first man to sin; Jesus was the first man to live without sin. 

In some ways, Jesus is like Moses. Moses led God’s chosen people out of slavery, and into the promised land.  When God’s anger would have wiped the people out of existence, Moses stood between them and God.  He reminded God of his promise to do good.  Like Moses, Jesus stands between us and God’s righteous wrath.

In some ways, Jesus is like David. David was a man after God’s own heart.  He was the King of Israel that all other kings would be measured by.  He was also a warrior, concurring his enemies and expanding the kingdom.

In some ways, Jesus was more like Solomon. King Solomon ruled during a time of peace.  He built God’s temple in Jerusalem, which David could not do because he had shed much blood.  Solomon is still remembered for his wisdom.

In some ways, Jesus is like John the Baptist. All of the people of Israel came out to John, who was preaching a message of repentance.  After being baptized by John, the first message Jesus preached (Mark 1) was to repent and believe the Gospel.

In some ways, Jesus is like every one of us. He was a human being, born as a baby to earthly parents.  He ate food when he was hungry, drank water when thirsty, and was tempted as we are.  He knew the pain of betrayal, and even suffered, bled and died.

On one hand, Jesus was like Adam; and Moses, David, Solomon, John the Baptist, and in a general sense, each of us.  But on the other hand… Jesus is God. He is the most unique of every religious leader.  He is like a high priest, but has no sins of his own for which to ask forgiveness.  He died and was laid in a tomb; but has now risen and lives forevermore.  Death and the grave have been defeated.  He did not consider equality with God a thing to be grasp (Phil. 2) but took the form of a servant; a servant obedient to death, even death on a cross.  No one has ever gone farther to bring home the sinful, the undeserving, the cursed or the wicked.  He is the good shepherd who lays down his life for his sheep.  He has become the firstborn of a large family, an adopted family, that will share his inheritance.

We use simile and metaphor in a attempt to wrap our brains around who Jesus is and what he like.  It is so difficult to do because there has never been and never will be another like him.  He is the embodiment of a loving God that we cannot understand.  His infinite love makes him unlike anything the world has ever seen.  If we could just understand that.

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