” So it is written: ‘The first man Adam became a living being’; the last Adam, a life-giving spirit. The spiritual did not come first, but the natural, and after that the spiritual. The first man was of the dust of the earth, the second man from heaven. As was the earthly man, so are those who are of the earth; and as is the man from heaven, so also are those who are of heaven.” (1 Corinthians 15:45-48 NIV )
Jesus The Last Adam
Adam only had one nature – a nature of human. In him was sin.
Jesus Christ, the Word made flesh, then came to us as a man, “but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.” (Phil 2:7). He possessed both divinity and humanity. In Him was no sin.
I remember tearing down when I first heard “This, the pow’r of the cross: Christ became sin for us” from The Power of The Cross by Keith & Kristyn Getty. Indeed, “He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” (2 Cor 5:21 NASB). NLT makes a bit clearer perhaps – “being sin” means that Jesus has come to “be the offering for our sin”.
“God had to have perfect human nature sacrificed in place of sinful human nature. Although He was like Adam, He did not have a sin nature. Consequently Jesus was able to be the sinless sacrifice for the sins of the world.” – John Steward
Jesus The Second Man
I love quoting Watchman Nee’s saying that in this age, there are only two man. Those who are not in Christ are the old man (aka the First Man), Adam. Those who are in Christ are the cooperate new heavenly man (aka the Second Man).
By the way, it is interesting to note that the name Adam means “humanity”. Thus, humanity, without Christ, is nothing but a dead end. God’s original intention is to let us partake of His divine life, yet instead of eating the Tree of Life, Adam and Eve ate the Tree of Good and Evil. Are we doing the same today?
In fact, the two terms “The Last Adam” and “The Second Man” are inseparable. How can we become the new man if sin is still in us? It is only by Jesus being “The Last Adam” who has put an end to all sins can we partake of His divine nature and become the new corporate heavenly “Second Man” with Him as our Head. We are all in Christ. We are all in this “Second Man”. How incredible!
Breathing New Life Into Us
“Then the Lord God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.” (Genesis 2:7 NIV)
When God made Adam, He breathed into Him the breath of life. Adam became a living being. He was living…until He ate the fruit from the Tree of Good and Evil under the deception of Satan. At that very moment, death entered into Adam. Bear in mind that it was the Tree of Life that God wanted him to take. God has always wanted to share with us His life.
Going back to 1 Corinthian 15:45. Paul wrote that the last Adam became a life-giving spirit. What did Jesus do when he asked the disciples to receive the Holy Spirit?
“Then he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit.” (John 20:22 NLT)
He breathed on them. He breathed on them just as how He breathed into Adam’s nostrils the breath of life when He first made man. And He said, “Receive the Holy Spirit”. Who is this Spirit but Jesus Christ Himself? Again, it was written, Jesus, the last Adam, is the life-giving spirit. The very divine life that God has always wanted us to have is once again available to us. We are no longer bounded by death. What a mystery! What a glory!