by Elizabeth Cain
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Have you ever considered the title given to Jesus, the Last Adam (1 Corinthians 15:45)? This is a very important title because it emphasizes what Jesus fulfilled (John 5:36, John 17:4). In order to understand the Last Adam we must first look at the original Adam.
Adam was created by God and was given all the wonders of the world. However, he was tempted by Satan and fell as he chose to eat a fruit to please his flesh over obeying God. Another man in the Bible fell to the temptations of the food. Esau took a meal of lentils in exchange for his birthright (Genesis 25:29-34, Hebrews 12:16) the same as Adam tasting the fruit in instead of obeying God.
Jesus was also tempted with the fleshly need of food. This time though Jesus passed the temptation of the food, refusing to use the power given by God to change stones into bread no matter how hungry he was (Matthew 4:3-4).
Jesus passed the temptation of food and instead listened to the Word of God. Satan then tempted Jesus to test the Words that God spoke. In the past the Israelites had tested God by challenging His power in the desert (Psalm 106:14). But Jesus was not moved to test the Word of God, for though God said He would protect Jesus, Jesus did not need proof to believe in Godís Word (Matthew 4:6-7).
The third temptation promised power and glory if Jesus would worship Satan. A similar man was tested and failed, a man of wisdom, Solomon. Solomon accepted foreign gods into his kingdom eventually going as far as worshipping them (1 Kings 11:4). But Satan did not fool Jesus as he did the other men of the past. With the power of the Holy Spirit within him, Jesus refused Satan; the Last Adam succeeded and overcame the sins of man (John 16:33).
Therefore Jesus is the Last Adam because he refused Satan and crushed his power, bruising Satanís head (Genesis 3:15). He completed what Adam left undone and therefore brought hope to all people.
And how did Jesus overcome the temptations that some great men of the Bible could not?
Romans 5:12-14 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned Ö Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam's transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come.
1 Corinthians 15:21-23 For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.
1 Corinthians 15:44-47 (NIV) it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a natural body, there is also a spiritual body. 45 So it is written: ďThe first man Adam became a living beingĒ; the last Adam, a life-giving spirit. 46 The spiritual did not come first, but the natural, and after that the spiritual. 47 The first man was of the dust of the earth; the second man is of heaven.
Meaning, by the virgin birth God made Jesus pure and able to separate the flesh from the spirit. In doing so Jesus was able to heed to the truth of the spirit without being swept into sin by the lusts of the flesh.
Can we overcome temptation? Yes, and we must overcome the temptations of Satan. Jesus gives us comfort saying to be like him and we too can crush the power of Satan (Romans 16:20).
Therefore, the Last Adam lived in the spirit the same way we are supposed to live. Jesus is a man but he was not born into sin the way all other people are born. Because Jesus was born by the power of God through a virgin he did not carry the sins of Adam (because it was not a manís seed that formed him). Therefore he is the Last Adam because he was created like Adam yet within the womb of Mary.
Praise be to God our Father in heaven who gave us Jesus who overcame the sins of man and gave us all a chance at salvation. Praise be to God for a perfect creation, Jesus the Christ.
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