The question is why do we need to be saved? Are all people in the world condemned by default? What exactly is wrong with human beings? We find the answer in the garden with Adam & Eve.
God had created human beings in the flesh and given all things freely. Man was created out of the dust as mortal beings. God gave all the trees in the garden freely to man. This garden contained two trees in the center: The Tree of Life that would give man immortality. The tree of knowledge of good & evil which God forbade man to eat otherwise they would suffer and die.
Man did not want to trust in God but wanted to become “like God”.
Man was created to trust in God’s grace but instead Adam tried to become wise like God and know right and wrong for himself. Man wanted to be immortal like God by trusting in the flesh! The flesh is man’s own wisdom and strength.
God had created man as a being that would depend on Him for everything – for all the physical blessings on earth and also immortality. But man decided to trust in his own flesh and that resulted in the curse of suffering and death in this world.
This is why we have so much suffering and death – its because man trusts in his own flesh which is utterly useless. We as human beings cannot even guarantee our next breath and somehow we thought we could become like God!
The flesh is utterly useless. That’s why Adams sin of trusting in himself in trying to become like God in the flesh was such a big sin!
What can a mere man try to become perfect like God in the flesh?
We are nowhere close to being holy and perfect like God!
This is why all of humanity is born in the flesh and condemned universally because every human being is taught to trust in his own abilities as we grow up in this world. I believe little children are innocent and the kingdom of God belongs to them but once a person grows up and begins to trust in himself, then he puts himself under condemnation.
This is why Jesus came to die on the cross!! Nothing else could make us righteous!!
Nothing else could forgive all our sins! There was no good deed we could ever do to attain immortality and become like God!
So then God decided to take all our sin and impute it on Jesus – our entire flesh was crucified on the cross!! The human effort died – our puny useless efforts deserved death.
So that Christ and his righteousness is freely given to us!!
There’s no other way! We had to die to receive his life !!! Our flesh has to end before his spirit and his righteousness was imputed to us!!
This is why we have zero merit of our own!
It’s completely his blood and righteousness!!
The story of Abraham is a great example of not boasting in the flesh:
Romans 4 WEB “What then will we say that Abraham, our forefather, has found according to the flesh? 2 For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not toward God. 3 For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.”4 Now to him who works, the reward is not counted as grace, but as something owed. 5 But to him who doesn’t work, but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is accounted for righteousness…..23 Now it was not written that it was accounted to him for his sake alone, 24 but for our sake also, to whom it will be accounted, who believe in him who raised Jesus, our Lord, from the dead, 25 who was delivered up for our trespasses, and was raised for our justification.”
Abraham and Sarah were as good as dead and could not have children but God promised to make them the father of nations. Abraham did not trust in himself nor did he get discouraged in his inability but TRUSTED in God’s power! This is why he was made righteous. Abraham had nothing to boast in himself but he boasted in God’s power. That is the righteousness of faith.
Peter was a man who tried to follow Jesus in his own flesh and he failed, denying Christ thrice. But later on, he repented of his self-righteousness and believed in the GRACE of Jesus Christ, receiving the Holy Spirit and the power to do miracles:
“Fellow Israelites, why does this surprise you? Why do you stare at us as if by our own power or godliness we had made this man walk? By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong. It is Jesus’ name and the faith that comes through him that has completely healed him, as you can all see.
It’s only his wounds we are healed. It’s only by his blood we are righteous
Not one inch of our goodness but Jesus alone
Philippians 3 ” 3 For it is we who are the circumcision, we who serve God by his Spirit, who boast in Christ Jesus, and who put no confidence in the flesh.”
No matter how good a person is, they are still in the flesh.
No flesh can attain salvation because they fall short of God’s glory in Jesus Christ.
Jesus is the only man who never sinned when He came in the flesh.
So then what hope does man have? There is nothing good in our flesh!
John 6 “63 The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you—they are full of the Spirit and life”
The only way to be saved is to not trust in our flesh but believe in Jesus!
He is the only one who has the words of Eternal life!
Everyone who believes in Jesus will receive the Holy Spirit.
When we receive the Holy Spirit, something amazing happens.
We are included in Christ!
Our flesh died with Christ on the cross, and we are raised with Christ and seated with Him in heavenly places!
Ephesians 2 “4 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus”
We were crucified with Christ and it is Him who lives in us!
Our flesh died on the cross! We do not live anymore! Our imperfections and sins were forgiven and not counted by God anymore! He sees only Christ in us!
Galatians 2 “19 “For through the law I died to the law so that I might live for God. 20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. 21 I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!”
We are completely hidden in Christ.
A believer is not in the flesh but in the Spirit!
A believer does not trust in his own flesh but lives by faith in Jesus who loved us and gave His life for us!
Colossians 2 “9 For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, 10 and in Christ you have been brought to fullness. He is the head over every power and authority. 11 In him you were also circumcised with a circumcision not performed by human hands. Your whole self ruled by the flesh was put off when you were circumcised by Christ, 12 having been buried with him in baptism, in which you were also raised with him through your faith in the working of God, who raised him from the dead. 13 When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, 14 having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross.”
The believer is forgiven all sin and made alive in Christ.
It is not we who live but it is Christ in us!
Christ alone is our Righteousness, our Holiness, our Wisdom and our Redemption.
So then we have nothing to boast in the flesh which died
but we boast only in JESUS our LORD !!
1 Corinthians 1 “8 God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, 29 so that no one may boast before him. 30 It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. 31 Therefore, as it is written: “Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord.””