Through the Bible with Les Feldick
LESSON 1 * PART 3 * BOOK 21
OLD ADAM CRUCIFIED – ROMANS 3:19-22
It’s such a joy to be able to teach, and to hear how the Lord is opening hearts, and we ask that you continue to pray for us. Let’s get back into where we left off in our last lesson in Romans Chapter 3, but remember we aren’t going to rush through this Book of Romans. This is one of the basic Books of Scriptures for us today. I don’t know why it’s ignored like it is, except it must be a Satanic conspiracy of some sort because here is where we have to begin to have an understanding of God’s tremendous plan of Salvation. The people of the Old Testament had Salvation, and it’s hard to put your thumb on it, but we know they did. We know that Abraham, David, and Moses and all the rest of them are in glory, but they were under a whole different set of circumstances, spiritual as well as physical than we are. But for us as Gentiles, those of us who have not been steeped in the Mosaic system, then the Apostle Paul is the man we have to listen to. Let me show you a verse in Romans Chapter 11, and this is repeated several times throughout Paul’s writings. Some of these things we read, but yet we don’t read them. We see it, and yet we don’t see it. Here in verse 13 we find a small insufficient verse, but based on what I just said it means everything.
“For I speak to you Gentiles, inasmuch as I am the apostle of the Gentiles,…”
Now I’ve been stressing that for five years now on this program. Remember Peter and the eleven were the Apostles of Israel, and Galatians 2:7-9 makes that so plain. They understood that, and shook hands on that agreement. So here is where you have that divergence now not only of personalities, but of doctrine. And here comes these tremendous Pauline doctrines that have never been revealed before. Let’s also look at the Book of Ephesians in Chapter 3, because I want you to see why I’m saying the things that I’m saying. So many people have been Sunday school teachers for years, yet have never seen these verses in the manner that it was intended. So many people think they read it, they think they know it, but they don’t. Now let’s read this verse carefully.
“FOR this cause (in other words everything that Paul had been writing in the first two chapters, because of this tremendous Gospel of Grace) I Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ for(whom?) you Gentiles.” Do you see that? Now that should tell you something. He was commissioned strictly for the needs of the Gentiles. Verse 2:
“If ye have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward:”
So many people read this verse but don’t see what it has to do with them. Everything we have concerning our doctrines today had to come through this apostle. Just look at that verse again. Don’t you see how plain that is? Most people don’t want to see it, they don’t want to give Paul the credit, they want to think that it’s just an extension of what Peter preached. No it isn’t. This is a whole new revelation, and look what Paul says in the next verse.
“How that by revelation he (the ascended risen Lord) made known unto me (Paul) the mystery (now what does the word revelation mean? An unveiling. Something that has been kept under wrap is suddenly unveiled. And that’s exactly where’s he’s at); as I wrote afore in few words.”
“Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ (now look at verse 5). Which in other ages (or generations) was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit; That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs,… Now come down to verse 9, and it can’t be made any plainer. How can people close their eyes to this? But many do. Look what it says.
“And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery (or secret), which from the beginning of the world (Adam) hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ.”
Do you see what that’s saying? That tells us there was a time when no one knew these things, they hadn’t been revealed yet, and that is why by inspiration of course, Paul tells us that he received it by revelation. It was now time for it to be revealed, in fact he uses the explanation in the Book of Corinthians “I am like one born before the due time.” What did Paul mean? He was premature. He came too early according to the whole Nation of Israel. Israel is still blind to these great things that Paul experienced (their day is coming), but that’s what he meant when he said, “he was like one born before the due time.” He received all these revelations and the rest of Israel was blinded. But we aren’t blind tonight, or at least we don’t have to be. Now let’s come back to Romans Chapter 3. And so this great Apostle of the Gentiles, as part of his revelations of this doctrine of Grace is telling us that the Law could do nothing but condemn, and point the finger, and say guilty. And then as we saw in the last part of our last lesson in verse 22:
“Even the righteousness of God which is (appropriated) by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:”
Well no difference between what and what? Between Jew and Gentiles. You see the Jew has to come on the level playing ground that we do. He can no longer come in on Covenant ground, he can’t come before God today, and say, “Now wait a minute God, I’m a Jew.” But God says, “That’s not the way I see you. I see you as no different than a Gentile.” A white person can’t come to God and say, “Now I’m coming to you as a white person.” Oh no, there is no difference between white and black, yellow and brown, rich and poor. We come in on the same level playing ground, and we are all alike, we are all sons of Adam. And the only way we can appropriate everything that God accomplished on the Cross is by one the two absolutes I gave you in the last lesson.
“Without faith it is impossible to please him (God),”
We are going back to Genesis and deal with Adam in just a moment, but before we do, let’s look at the other absolute.
“…and without the shedding of blood is no remission (of sin).”
Both of these knock out the good works people, they don’t know what faith is. They don’t know what it is to take God at His Word, they say, “I’m doing it own my own. I think I’ll make it.” The other thing that the good works people do is absolutely shun the Blood. People don’t like the blood aspect, but you see that was the whole purpose of the Cross. “He had to shed His Blood.” It had to be a death where that was evident, otherwise you see the Jews could have gone ahead and killed Him their normal way of capital punishment, by stoning Him. But that wouldn’t have fulfilled the shedding of Blood that we have on that Crucifixion. So those are the two imperatives or absolutes, and keep those two in mind as we look at verse 22 once more.
“….by the faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:”
Let’s see how that applied to Adam in Genesis Chapter 3. One of the best ways to understand certain tenets of Scripture is to go back to where it was first mentioned, and here it is. Here is the first time we have a man who is going to be faced with both of these imperatives. He has to first and foremost know that he approaches God by faith. Secondly there is going to have to be a Blood sacrifice.
“And Adam called his wife’s name Eve; because she was the mother of all living.”
Now remember for the early episodes that took place in the Garden we find Adam alone. Eve was inside of Adam at that time. I know people don’t like that concept, but that’s what the Scriptures teach. Eve was in Adam! And after Adam had named all the animals, he must have been lonely, and God knew he was.
“And the LORD God said, `It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.'” And so He brought Eve out of Adam and presented her to him as the woman. But she was called Eve, she was called woman, in other words “out of man.” Now sometime later we come to the place where Adam calls the woman Eve. And Eve means the “mother of all living.” Now think for a moment, you have to put all of this together, and I know it can get complicated. Back there before they ate of the tree, what did God tell them?
“But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.”
Well they ate. Now you don’t have offspring from someone that dies. But you see old Adam has still got that bell ringing in his mind. Now God told us that after we ate of the tree we are going to die. So evidently Eve is headed for her death, and Adam didn’t know how soon, but now remember this faith by definition is what? Taking God at His Word! Now here is one of the places I have to suppose. Evidently God had told Adam that in spite of their awful dilemma, he and his wife Eve are going to be the propagators of a whole human race. They are all going to have their beginning in Eve as the mother, and Adam as the father.
“And Adam called his wife’s name Eve; because she was the mother of all living.”
After having the curse explained to him, and how awful the situation is going to get, we find that Adam then calls his wife the mother of all living. Well I thought that Adam thought Eve was going to die. God must have told him that they were going to have children. Now if God told Adam that he was going to have children, and he responds by calling her the mother of all living, then what was that? “Faith.” He took God at His Word. And that was all the faith that Adam needed to fulfill this first command. Now let’s look at this next verse: Remember the second imperative was “without the shedding of blood.” In Genesis 3, and verse 21 what happened? An animal or animals were killed, so what’s implied? Their blood was shed. A blood sacrifice, but just like the sacrifices at the Temple they weren’t just killed or thrown away, but rather those animals were kept for food, and what have you. That was the whole idea of bringing it to the priest, it was their livelihood. So here we have then the faith of Adam when he called his wife’s name Eve, he had fulfilled that requirement of believing God. The second requirement finds God providing the sacrificial animals. And remember it’s God who is providing them. Now let’s look at the text.
“Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins (what did God do with these coats of skins? Covered their nakedness – their physical needs. Now finish the verse, and the last three words are most important), and clothed them.”
He wasn’t referring to the skins. That was done with the fact that he had made them coats. But the clothing of them is not their physical clothing, but rather their spiritual. Remember in verse 22 of Romans 3 that it was God’s righteousness that was imputed unto everyone that believeth. An imputed righteousness, it was an imputed covering. So because Adam had the ability to believe what God said, the blood has now been shed from the sacrificial animals. He not only covers their physical bodies, but He clothes them with a Spiritual garment that now hid old Adam, and he now has the imputed righteousness of the righteousness of God. Now you get a better picture of that if you go on to the Book of Isaiah Chapter 61: The Scripture says it just beautifully, and they all three mean the same thing. When He clothed Adam, when He clothed Isaiah, and when He clothed the believer in Romans 3, it’s all the same thing. The imputed righteousness of God.
“I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul shall be joyful in my God (why is Isaiah filled with joy?); for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness,”
You see the whole purpose of God giving us this Book is to bring us to the point of Salvation. Every human being has to reach that point if they’re going to escape God’s wrath. And God is going to do everything that He can to keep every person from falling under that condemnation. And God has done that, and He’s made it so available. You know I’ve had people ask in my classes more than once, “How can God Who is a God of love and mercy possibly consign people someday to that awful Lake of Fire? Listen it will be easy, and I mean that. It’s going to be easy, because He’s done everything that could possibly be done to keep them from it. He’s given us The Word, He’s given us men who are willing to preach and teach it so we can understand that all we have to do is “BELIEVE”! Faith plus nothing! See there is no energy involved in believing, it’s just accepting what God has said. No questions asked, but people don’t want to do that. They simply don’t want to believe what God has said concerning Salvation. Reference Romans 1:16, I Corinthians 15:1-4, Romans 10:9-10 and also I Thessalonians 4:14. There are so many more scriptures that Paul uses to show us Salvation. And when we do believe like Isaiah, then immediately because these two imperatives have now been fulfilled, what happens? He has clothed me with the garments of Salvation, and covered me with a robe of righteousness.
Now you see that’s the opposite of what we saw in Romans Chapter 3. Our throats are like open sepulchers, our mouths are full of cursing, our hearts are full of envy and deceit. Those are just the opposite of the righteousness of God. And yet what people try to do is put on their own veneer instead of God’s covering. And for their own veneer they’re going to work for a whole lifetime. I can remember my dear old mom when I was a child would say, “It takes a lifetime to build a reputation, and about 5 minutes to completely destroy it, and isn’t that true? That’s what so many people are trying to do and then all of a sudden their old Adam gets the best of them. You read every day about some successful wealthy business-man finally gets caught in a trap of sin and cheating and ends up in prison with his life destroyed. What’s happened? His old Adam finally got the best of him; he couldn’t control him. But when you’re covered with the righteousness of God those things don’t happen. Not that a believer can’t sin, don’t misunderstand me, because we can. But it’s a different ball game. Isaiah 61:10 again:
“I will greatly rejoice in the LORD, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.”
That’s how a believer looks in God’s sight when we let Him cover us, but when we try to veneer ourselves all He sees is that open sepulcher. Now back to Romans Chapter 3. So this great covering of the garments of Salvation is imputed, and that’s the word Paul will use throughout this whole Book of Romans. And that’s a bookkeeping term. It means to put to the account. And so God’s righteousness is imputed to us and is covering us tonight, because we have believed what He has done on our behalf.
A question that often comes up is this, “Les I believe, but it doesn’t seem to work that way. I still have the same old problems, and I’m still defeated.” If that is the case then I think there is something wrong in the believing end of it, because if I understand Scripture correctly when we truly and honestly believe that Christ accomplished everything that needed to be done on my behalf, then He moves right in and gives you and I the power to live that life pleasing in His sight. Oh, occasionally we will fall, we’re going to trip, but God is just like a patient young mother. They never give up, they just pick us up and say you’re forgiven, you’re cleansed, now move on. Now I’m talking about people who are genuinely concerned about dealing with God on His premise. I’m not talking about a flash in the pan, walking down an aisle, joining a church or something like that. For genuine believers to do those things that’s well and good, but to simply do that to fulfill a ritualistic demand; forget it. But for the true believer this Book promises that God moves in and He gives us all the power we need to live and walk pleasing in His sight. People around us will notice that we are different, and all this takes place by the power of God.