Q: Into what estate did the fall bring mankind?
A: The fall brought mankind into an estate of sin and misery.
Romans 5:18: Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men.
We've already talked about Adam's federal headship over the human race, how when Adam fell, we all fell with him. Sin entered into God's most precious creation, and instead of bringing joy and delight to the Creator, we now stir up his holy wrath and anger and justice. That is the result of us being in an estate of sin.
But the confession this week also talks about an estate of misery. Because the effects of sin aren't just that we are now depraved. Now we must live in this state of depravity. We rebel against God and his law. His law is a law of love. It tells us how to live in a way that brings glory to God, but it also shows us how we are to live. The law of God is the "better way" to live. But since we rebel against that law, we live in a way that brings us pain and suffering. It's not just that God told us how to live because that's what pleases him, or because he simply doesn't like something. No, God has shown and instructed us how to live because that's how we were originally designed to live. It's what is best for us! And now, we live contrary to the ways in which we were designed. Misery is the result. We were designed to be at peace and in fellowship with God. We rebel against God, and instead bask in the misery of not having fellowship with our creator. We were designed to be at peace and in fellowship with our fellow man. We rebel against that design, and now murder, harm, insult, slander one another. We were designed to be at peace with the natural world around us. We rebel against that design, and now we plunder our natural resources, destroy the created world around us, live in fear of what the elements can do to us at any given moment. Misery everywhere we look. Misery everywhere we turn. And it all stems from sin. It's all a result of the fall of Adam, and our continual rebellion against God.
In the coming weeks, the catechism will examine even more closely the estate of sin and the estate of misery, particularly the eternal effects of falling from our original estate. I wanted us, though, to take a few minutes to see how our falling from our original estate has had very real consequences not only eternally, but also here and now in this life.
We can take encouragement though, as our Scripture this week foreshadows a great hope. The "second Adam" has indeed come, and by one work of righteousness, he brings life and justification for all of God's people!