Unlimited: Death Reigned
Sep 16, 2022 339
Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who is a pattern of the one to come (Romans 5:14).
Paul refers to the giving of the law as happening at Mt Sinai, and now he says that although God doesn’t charge sin to anyone’s account, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses. It is evident then, that God was charging sin to people’s accounts. Death is in the world because God charged sin to humanity’s account.
Importantly, however, Paul says that those from the time of Adam to Moses didn’t sin by breaking a command. Paul is referring to one of the written commands given at Mt Sinai, which didn’t exist during this time.
So, how did they sin? They sinned by violating God’s law in a different way.
Death is in the world because God charged sin to humanity’s account.
Paul has already said that the Gentiles who don’t have the written law given at Sinai still have the law, in the sense that God has revealed his will to them through other means, such as through nature, conscience, and even direct revelation. It is in this sense that humanity before Sinai broke God’s law.
The apostle Paul here mentions Adam as “a pattern of the one to come”, who is Christ. Paul is introducing the concept of the first Adam versus the second Adam, which will be important for the argument he is about to make.
It is a reality that in a world under sin, death reigns. The reality and fear of death underlies people’s basic motivations and drives much of this world’s activities and industry. Can you think of some examples of this? But death never reigns in a Christian’s life.