A Citizenship In Heaven
Are we already Citizens of Heaven?
Adam was made a living soul and afterward put in a garden eastward in Eden. He was set in an environment of mortality. All about him plants and animals were dying. He knew the facts of death.
And Adam himself was created a mortal being. He could only live a prolonged life, and that by eating of the tree of life. He was a candidate for immortality. He was on trial, to see whether he would obey his Creator or not.
Adam was threatened with death if he disobeyed God's one and only command for him. And that death was to happen in the very day that he transgressed.
Adam wilfully sinned. He died the day he sinned. This does not necessarily mean that a day is a thousand years and that he did not live out that time. Adam died in less than 24 hours after he ate of the forbidden fruit. How?
There was a sacrifice, a substitute. One died in his stead and he was identified with that victim which shed its blood and gave of its skin that Adam might be covered.
Adam knew that this innocent victim stood as a representative of himself. It had died a death from which there was no return and for which there was no remedy. This was what was threatened to him, and he realized that it was what he deserved.
Coupled with the promise in Gen 3:15 , this sacrifice was a picture story of what was to happen in the future. But it was not yet time for God Himself to take the place of Adam and die in his stead. That was to come later. But Adam had the promise and could by faith obtain eternal life and resurrection in a sure and efficacious sacrifice to be made in the future, even as you and I can look back to it and be identified with that Sacrifice.
Adam did die 930 years later, but not the death that was threatened to him in Eden. He "fell on sleep" and awaits the call for resurrection. After the sacrifice was made, Adam again was a candidate for immortality, but on different conditions.
When Adam fell, he not only brought death upon himself and the forfeiture of immortality, but brought the same upon countless millions of his children. They too can only have resurrection and immortality by being identified with or baptized into the death and resurrection of the Redeemer, the one great Sacrifice. They must follow their father Adam in this respect. Most of them follow something they need not do. Most men at some time try the fig leaves to cover themselves. But they soon discover that their own works are not sufficient; they soon wither away and drop off.
When Adam and Eve made the aprons of fig leaves and then hid themselves, they fully expected God to appear and carry out the sentence of death. How surprised they must have been when He provided a way of escape. Maybe it was hard to believe. They learned a great lesson in the love of God.
The record leads us to believe that Adam failed in many ways, yet his children had been taught the sacrifice, and the reason for it. The place was where the cherubim were placed at the garden.
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