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Sermon #3078

Made Alive in Christ

A Sermon on Romans 5:12


Romans 5:12 ESV KJV
Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned— (ESV)

Sermon Description

In the previous sermon, Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones addressed that all humanity sinned when Adam sinned. But how is it that all sin in Adam? In this sermon on Romans 5:12 titled “Made Alive in Christ,” Dr. Lloyd-Jones dives into this topic by looking into several different views. The first view is the realistic view, which states that the whole of humanity resided in Adam. Because of this, when Adam sinned, all humanity sinned. Second is the representation view. This view states that Adam’s sin was passed to all because God had appointed him as the representative for all humanity. Dr. Lloyd-Jones states that his view of Scripture shows a mixture of these two views. He looks at the parallel between Adam and Christ. He shows how both Adam and Christ were appointed by God and represented all humanity. Adam represented all in his sin and Jesus represented all in His obedience. Dr. Lloyd-Jones ends his sermon by pointing out the important truth that Jesus is the last Adam. There will be no one to come after Him who will again represent all of humanity. Christians can rejoice in that fact, knowing that they can forever rest in the work of Jesus Christ.

Sermon Breakdown

  1. The sermon is focused on expounding Romans 5:12, specifically the last clause “for that all have sinned”.
  2. Dr. Lloyd-Jones argues that this means we all sinned “in Adam”, that Adam’s sin is imputed to all of humanity.
  3. There are two main views on how exactly we sinned in Adam: the “realistic view” and the “representational view”. The realistic view sees Adam as containing the whole of human nature, and we are divisions of that nature. The representational view sees Adam as our representative before God.
  4. Dr. Lloyd-Jones sees merits in both views, but thinks the realistic view is too speculative. However, verses like Hebrews 7:9-10 show we were somehow “in Adam’s loins” and implicated in his sin.
  5. Adam was not just the natural head of the race, but God constituted him as our federal head and representative. So when Adam sinned, we sinned in and through him.
  6. Many modern commentators reject this view, seeing it as merely reflecting ancient rabbinic teachings. But if we reject this, why believe other teachings of Paul and the Bible? We must accept the authority and inspiration of Scripture.
  7. Adam is a “type” or figure of Christ, the “one to come” (v. 14). There are many similarities between Adam and Christ: both were appointed by God; both are heads of races; both are heads of covenants; both represented all their “seed”; both passed on effects to their seed (sin/righteousness).
  8. However, there are also contrasts and differences between Adam and Christ which Paul will go on to explore. Dr. Lloyd-Jones will address questions about whether “all” and “many” mean the same in both cases, and whether this implies universalism.

The Book of Romans

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899-1981) was a Welsh evangelical minister who preached and taught in the Reformed tradition. His principal ministry was at Westminster Chapel, in central London, from 1939-1968, where he delivered multi-year expositions on books of the bible such as Romans, Ephesians and the Gospel of John. In addition to the MLJ Trust’s collection of 1,600 of these sermons in audio format, most of these great sermon series are available in book form (including a 14 volume collection of the Romans sermons), as are other series such as "Spiritual Depression", "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount" and "Great Biblical Doctrines". He is considered by many evangelical leaders today to be an authority on biblical truth and the sufficiency of Scripture.