“KNOWING THAT CHRIST BEING RAISED FROM THE DEAD DIETH NO MORE; DEATH HATH NO MORE DOMINION OVER HIM. FOR IN THAT HE DIED, HE DIED UNTO SIN ONCE: BUT IN THAT HE LIVETH, HE LIVETH UNTO GOD.” ROMANS 6:9 AND 10.
“I AM HE THAT LIVETH, AND WAS DEAD; AND, BEHOLD, I AM ALIVE FOR EVERMORE. AMEN; AND HAVE THE KEYS OF HELL AND OF DEATH.” REVELATION 1:18.
When the Lord Jesus was here on earth He said, “Therefore doth My Father love Me, because I lay down My life, that I might take it again. No man taketh it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of My Father.” John 10:17 and 18.
Then we read in I Corinthians 15:17 and 20 to 23: “And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins.” “But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept. 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. But every man in his own order <CHRIST THE FIRSTFRUITS; afterward they that are Christ’s at His coming.”
Then let us note in Hebrews 6:19 and 20 that Jesus Christ is called “our Forerunner.” “Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil; Whither HE FORERUNNER is for us entered, even Jesus, made an High Priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.” Hebrew 6:19 and 20.
The Lord Jesus Christ is in heaven. The glorified Divine-Man. He became the Firstfruits of them that slept. He is the believer’s Forerunner. The Greek word is “Runner-ahead”. Christ ran ahead into death, and then He ran ahead in a resurrected body into heaven.
Note what Christ did by His death and resurrection:
1. He abolished death. “But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Savour Jesus Christ Who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.” II Timothy 1:10.
2. He spoiled principalities and powers. “And having spoiled principalities and powers, He made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it.” Colossians 2:15.
3. He destroyed him that had the power of death. “Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, He also Himself likewise took part of the same; that through death He might destroy him that had the power of death that is, the devil; And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.” Hebrews 2:14 and 15.
The Lord Jesus appeared ONCE to put away sin, by ONE offering, and then entered ONCE into heaven having obtained eternal redemption for us. Hebrews 9:26, Hebrews 10:12, Hebrews 9:12.
In that He died unto sin, Christ died ONCE. He is alive forevermore. Death hath no more dominion over Him.
The Holy Spirit says to the believer, “We thus judge, that if One died for all, then all (believers) have died.” Note also Colossians 2:20, Colossians 3:3 and 4, and Romans 6:7 and 8 and Romans 6:2 and 3. “Wherefore if ye be dead with Christ from the rudiments of the world, why, as though living in the world, are ye subject to ordinances?”
“For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God. When Christ, Who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with Him in glory.”
“For he that is dead is freed from sin. Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him.”
“HOW SHALL WE THAT ARE DEAD TO SIN, LIVE ANY LONGER THEREIN? KNOW YE NOT, THAT SO MANY OF US AS WERE BAPTIZED INTO JESUS CHRIST WERE BAPTIZED INTO HIS DEATH?”
We ask two most important questions:
1—Just when is the believing sinner baptized into the death of Christ?
2—How many times can the believing sinner be baptized into the death of Christ ?
Then we turn to Galatians 3:27 and 28 “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither male nor female, for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.” The believer is baptized into Christ once-for-all.
What does baptism into Christ do for believers? It makes them all ONE. Note how this is stated in I Corinthians 12:12 to 14
“For as the Body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one Body, being many are one Body; so also is Christ. For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one Body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. For the Body is not one member, but many.”
When the believing sinner receives Christ, he is immediately baptized into the death of Christ and into the Body of Christ by one Divine baptism.
Note again Romans 12:4 and 5—“For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office So we, being many, are one Body in Christ, and every one members one of another. “
Note again Ephesians 2:14 to 18—“For He is our peace, Who hath made both ONE, and hath broken down the middle-wall of partition between us; Having abolished in His flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments, contained in ordinances; for to make in Himself of twain ONE NEW MAN. So making peace; And that He might reconcile both unto God in ONE BODY by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby: and came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh. For through Him we both have access BY ONE SPIRIT unto the Father.”
Very interesting. Believing Jews and believing Gentiles, with Christ, make up ONE NEW MAN. Both reconciled unto God in ONE BODY by the ONE sacrifice of Jesus Christ on the cross. ONE NEW MAN-ONE BODY-All baptized by ONE SPIRIT into ONE BODY.
Then let us compare Genesis 2:23 and 24 with Ephesians 5:31 and 32. “And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. Therefore shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall cleave unto his wife; and they shall be ONE FLESH.”
“For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they TWO SHALL BE ONE FLESH. This is a great mystery; but I speak concerning Christ and the Church.”
Adam is the Old Man. Eve was one flesh with Adam. Christ is the New Man. The Church, which is the Body, is ONE flesh with Christ.
“Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ.” Ephesians 4:13. The Body is called “the fulness of Christ.” Ephesians 1:23.
We have quoted I Corinthians 15:22: As in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.”
Note also verses forty-seven and forty-five “The first man is of the earth, earthy: the Second Man is the Lord from heaven.” “The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a life-giving spirit.”
We learn here of the first man and the Second Man; the first Adam and the Last Adam. Now note in the fifth chapter of Romans how many times the word ONE occurs. Thirteen times.
“BY ONE MAN (Adam) sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:” Romans 5:12.
“Through the offence of one many be dead.” “The judgment was by one to condemnation.” “By one man’s offence death reigned by one.” “By the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation.” “By one man’s disobedience many were made sinners.” Romans 5:15,16,17, 18 and 19.
Yes, in Adam all die. In Adam all are already dead in trespasses and sins. Ephesians 2:1. All in Adam are under the universal law of sin and death. By Adam judgment and condemnation have passed upon all men. By Adam is the entrance of sin. By Moses and the Law of Sinai sin abounds.
But now the good news of Romans 5:20 and 21:
“Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound. That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.”
Adam was disobedient unto death. Christ was obedient unto death. Adam brought the curse. Christ bore the curse. Adam brought the thorns. Christ wore the thorns.
By Adam came ruin. By Christ came redemption. By Adam came death. By Christ, the resurrection of the dead.
Christ is the one Mediator between God and men. Christ died once. By His one offering believing sinners are sanctified and perfected. Hebrews 10:10 and 14. When the sinner believes in the once-for-all sacrifice of the One Mediator he is baptized by One Spirit into the one and only Bible church, the One Body. There is one Body, one Spirit and one baptism.
The believer is baptized into the death of Christ, and puts on Christ, the very moment he receives Christ. At that same moment he is buried with Christ by baptism, he is raised with Christ to walk in newness of life Romans 6:3 and 4.
“Raised to walk in newness of life.” The believer is a new creation in Christ Jesus. II Corinthians 5:17. The believer is risen with Christ, to seek those things which are above where Christ is seated. Colossians 3:1 and 2. The believer is seated with Christ in the heavenlies and there blessed with all spiritual blessings. Ephesians 2:6 and 1:3.
The believer is complete in Christ. Colossians 2:10. All of this is accomplished by the one Divine baptism of Colossians 2:12, Romans 6:3, Galatians 3:27, 28 and Ephesians 4:5.
For more articles by Pastor J. C. O'Hair, visit the J. C. O'Hair Online Library.