God manifests himself in three persons, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. It’s easy to recognize the Father and Son in many of our Christmas stories and traditions, but the Holy Spirit is sort of the missing character. That’s just in our remembrance of the story; in the Biblical account, he is all over that story.
If we’re aware of the Holy Spirit in the Christmas narrative at all, it’s probably when the angel Gabriel tells Mary that the Holy Spirit will come upon her and she will conceive, Luke 1:35. That’s just the first time Luke will mention the Spirit. Continue reading →
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. Continue reading →