There is a universal epidemic.
Adam and Eve are our physical and spiritual parents, and they have sinned greatly against God, each other, and all their children. They have horribly sinned against us, and because of their foolish desires, choices, and actions, we have all been plagued with a spiritual birth defect — an evil inclination to sin. It is a universal epidemic; all of us have been infected with original sin, and we prove daily to be lawless rebels with devilish hearts. Therefore, while our particular sins show themselves differently, and while the earthly consequences of our various sins are not all the same, and while some of us look better on the outside than others, all of us continually prove to be like Adam, Eve, Cain, and Lamech. Without exception, we are all totally deprave.
Now, some may reason this perspective to be judgmental, harsh, negative, and outdated. Many preachers and teachers have abandoned presenting us in such terms. However, there is no reason to puff one another up with “fake news” regarding our own righteousness and goodness. Listen afresh to the evaluation of our Creator and Judge:
The Lord said, “My Spirit shall not abide in man forever, for he is flesh: his days shall be 120 years.” … The Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And the Lord regretted that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him to his heart. So the Lord said, “I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land … for I am sorry that I have made them.” … Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight, and the earth was filled with violence. And God saw the earth, and behold, it was corrupt, for all flesh had corrupted their way on the earth. And God said … “I have determined to make an end of all flesh, for the earth is filled with violence through them. Behold, I will destroy them with the earth. (Genesis 6:5-13)
By nature, all men and women are “flesh,” and when God grades our hearts and habits, he declares we:
- Our wickedness is great in the earth
- Every intention and thought from our hearts is only evil
- Are corrupt
- Merit only God’s regret, grief, sorrow, and wrath
- Merit only God’s bringing to an end, blotting out, and destruction
There is a specific cure.
There is hope. Scattered throughout the first seven chapters of Genesis, certain declarations and descriptions are made of Adam, Eve, Able, Seth, Enoch, the Sons of God, and Noah. These individuals:
- Are looking forward to the Special Offspring
- Are covered by the Lord’s sacrifice
- Offer forth pleasing sacrifices
- Call upon the Lord
- Walk with God
- Obey and do all the Lord commands
- Are contrasted with the “Daughters of Men”
- Are labeled as righteous and blameless
How can this be? If they are all born totally deprave, then what makes the difference? A fantastic phrase is used in the midst of Genesis 6:
But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord. (Genesis 6:8)
God looked down and with a holy, just, fair, wrathful and burning eye, he saw the sin of all men and proclaimed the sentence earned by the rank sinners before him.
Then, with his holy, just, fair, wrathful, and burning eye, seeing the sin of all and the condemnation they deserved, he merciful, and gracious gazed forth grace towards Adam, Eve, Able, Seth, Enoch, the Sons of God, Noah, and his family. This was not because these folk were by nature righteous and blameless. They were not different. They were not better. They were not the exceptions. They too were damned by the spiritual epidemic of original sin and total depravity. However, for reasons known only to God, they were granted the Cure of the God’s Gospel Gaze. They were saved by the heart and eyes of the One who would one day save them by means of his hands and feet.
Friends, so where do you stand today? There are only two groups found before the all-seeing eye of the Lord.
Group One: Towards many, God is looking down with his holy, just, fair, wrathful and burning eye. He sees your sin and proclaims anew the sentence you have earned. You are guilty and rank before him. Excommunication, death, and hell are your lot.
If you find yourself in Group One, all you must do is respond to the gaze of God today. If you find your heart longing to receive Jesus’ gracious merit and not your own earned demerit, call upon him in faith and let a local Christian friend or pastor know of your decision. What a fantastic day this is in your life!
Group Two: But towards many, God is looking down with his holy, just, fair, wrathful and burning eye. He sees your sin and proclaims anew the sentence you have earned. You are guilty and rank before him. Excommunication, death, and hell are your lot … but towards you he is gazing with mercy, grace, and a smile on his face.
If you find yourself in Group Two, then quit acting like you are still found in Group One. God is gazing grace at you. He has sent forth and killed the Special Offspring for you. He has placed all his anger and condemnation on Jesus Christ for your sins — he has none left for you. He has placed all Jesus’ righteousness on you — he needs nothing more from you. You can now willingly offer forth pleasing sacrifices to him. You can be one, because you are one. You get to call upon the Lord and walk with your God. You can now do what the Lord commands and experience gracious blessings for you and your household. You are “Sons of God” and you are declared different from the “Daughters of Men.” Yes, like Noah, regardless of what you do, you are “righteous” and “blameless,” and this is not because some “Power of Positive Thinking” minister declares you to be so. This is only because of God, who with his eye gazes only grace upon you, and with his mouth declares you to be his holy saint. Be humble. Be happy. And be holy as you walk in the never-ceasing grace of your Savior and Lord.