Human nature revealed in the Bible
Since the Bible is a revelation from the Creator, it must be the only authoritative source of information on human nature. The record tells us of the entrance of sin, which brought death to mankind. It also gives us information about God’s purpose with man and with the earth.
The Mortality of Man
In case we may be tempted to dismiss the early chapters of the Bible as the uninformed writings of primitive people, we do well to remember that Jesus endorsed the Old Testament Scriptures on all fronts as the word of God. He said,
The apostle Paul similarly turned back to the account in Genesis for reliable information on man.
He turned to Genesis then, to find the reasons for man’s mortality and in order to explain the redemptive work of Christ who was,
Human nature is MORTAL, and is a punishment for SIN, which is the transgression of God’s law (1 John 3:4). When a man dies he ceases to exist -
Sin has temporarily frustrated God's purpose in creation, which was to people the earth with a race of immortal beings like Himself in form and substance. An immortal sinner is, however, an impossibility, for immortality is only bestowed by God as reward for OBEDIENCE, and once bestowed, an immortal being is constitutionally incapable of disobedience to his Maker. The remedy was found in the provision of a son of God who should succeed where Adam had failed - i.e., in obedience under trial.
The barrier which sin had interposed between God and his creatures was done away in Christ’s sacrificial death.
God's Remedy Conditional
However, this barrier can only be removed on the conditions which God has imposed.
Jesus Christ was Son of man in his nature for he was
But God, the Creator of all things, was his Father, for he was conceived in the womb of a virgin by the POWER of the Highest (Luke 1:30-35). By this means he was strengthened to lead a perfectly sinless life and, in his death, he voluntarily declared that God was JUST to condemn human nature to extinction in death (see Romans 5:17-19).
He recognised the truth of the word of God, recorded by Jeremiah,
God was able to raise Christ from the dead for, though he possessed sinful flesh, he never yielded to its temptations to sin (see Hebrews 4:15).
Acknowledgement of Sin the First Step
Once a man will acknowledge that he is a sinful creature, deserving only of death, then he is in the frame of mind to take advantage of God’s offer of forgiveness, expressed by the apostle Peter thus:
In this situation, and after baptism based on a knowledge and belief of God’s purpose, a man can have something better to look forward to than,
he may anticipate,
A Situation Demanding Action
We have seen that the purpose of God in providing a saviour was “to reconcile the world unto himself”. The trouble is that though God is reconciled to the world, the world, generally speaking, refuses to be reconciled to God. It is a reciprocal process - God has done His part in providing the means of reconciliation in His Son. Man must do his part in accepting God’s gracious provision and obeying the terms of reconciliation outlined above. He must read God’s book which, in the words of the apostle Paul, is able to make us wise unto salvation. He went on to say,
The Bible offers a choice to human beings - the choice is between life and death. Therefore, choose life, for Christ will immortalise only those who belong to him at his second coming. This is what the apostle Paul wrote to the believers at Corinth: