Genesis 2:17 “You must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.”
In our study of man it is important to understand what is commonly known as the “Fall” of man. Scripture testifies to this in many places. For example: Romans 5:12-19 “Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because all sinned.”
Through this sin man lost much of his original dignity. He was made to have dominion, to rule and reign. Still to a remarkable degree man still retains much of this dominion. However, sin has weakened his power to dominate nature. We see even today with all that man is and has that he cannot control nature: earthquakes, hurricanes, etc. and we see the havoc they have brought upon man’s world.
We do read that the PERFECT MAN: JESUS CHRIST – had complete control over nature. We also read that God will put everything under His feet, even death and He will reign supreme. We see His miracles, rebuking the storm, healing the blind and the lame, and many other incidences of His power being displayed.
At the FALL of man we see that every part of man became tainted by sin. Although man is not all together bad still we can see man’s total depravity. Man’s way is not up, but down. His whole being is corrupted. As someone said: “Man’s spirit is darkened (Ephesians 4:17-18; 1 Corinthians 2:14); his soul is debased (Jeremiah 17:9; Ephesians 4:19); his body is diseased and death-ridden (Romans 7:24); his will is weakened (Romans 7); his conscience is seared and hardened (1 Timothy 4:2). Sin brought a schism into man’s nature, the lower dominating the higher. Man, apart from grace, has “the mind of the flesh” (Romans 8:7, S.R.V.) and a heart that is deceitful (Genesis 6:5-12; Romans 1:17-24). He is spiritually dead (Ephesians 2:1); under wrath and judgment (John 5:28,29; Psalm 130:3; Romans 2:5-12; Ephesians 2:3; 2 Thessalonians 1:6-9; Revelation 20:15; 21:8); utterly lost (Luke 19:10); a guilty sinner before God (Psalm 14:2,3; Isaiah 53:6; Romans 3:9-23); a child of the devil, and under the control of Satan (Ephesians 2:2).
Dr. R.A Torrey listed five steps in the “fall of man” given in Genesis 3:1-6. Adam was guilty of:
- Listening to slander against God.
- Doubting God’s Word and His love.
- Looking at what God had forbidden.
- Lusting for what God had prohibited (1 John 2:16).
- Disobeying God’s commandment.
Reformation can restore man. Yet, God does more than just restore. He takes us even beyond where man was before he fell.