Read - Genesis 2v15-17
Message - Scott Woodburn
At a certain age the main question we want to ask is "Why?"..."Why do we have to go to school?"..."Why do I have to brush my teeth?"...then as the years roll on perhaps the question becomes "Why me?" Thankfully our Lord never stopped to ask "Why?", He didn't come reluctantly, He didn't drag His feet. Jesus came willingly into that which He created. But why did He come? Jesus came because sinful humanity had fallen and were in dire need of a Redeemer.
We spoke last week of the covenant of redemption and this week we speak of the covenant of works. This was the covenant made with Adam which promised everlasting life and was dependent on Adam's perfect and personal obedience. We find it outlined in Genesis 2 with God commanding Adam not to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil (v17). This was Adam's work. He could eat of any other tree (v16) but not this one. If Adam had met God's command with obedience then He would have enjoyed everlasting life.
Sadly this isn't a story with a happy ending. God was clear that the day Adam disobeyed would be the day that death would enter the world, Adam would surely die if he chose the road of rebellion (v17). The promise of everlasting life would be gone, the covenant of works would lie in tatters and humanity would fall from a place of bliss and joy. Adam did indeed disobey and in Adam all have sinned and deserve the wrath of God (Romans 5v12). It is here that we find the "why" of Christmas.
You and I are descendants of the first man Adam. We speak of him as the "federal head" of humanity and because we are part of the human race we share in disobedient and sinful Adam's fall. If we remain in Adam, then surely we will die (1 Corinthians 15v22). What we need is another Adam. A perfect Adam. An Adam who would perfectly and personally obey God. Jesus is the second Adam. The greater Adam. The first Adam is called "a type of the one who was to come" (Romans 5v14) with Jesus being the promised one.
Why did Christ take on flesh? Because of the fall, because of sin and because God had in eternity past decreed that He would have a people for His own possession. Without Christ's arrival and his subsequent perfect obedience and sacrifice at Calvary we would be undone. But Jesus has come and "while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly." (Romans 5v6)
Q48 What are we specially taught by these words, before me,” in the first commandment? These words, before me,” in the first commandment teach us, that God, who seeth all things, taketh notice of, and is much displeased with, the sin of having any other God.