I Corinthians 15:21-22
“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.”
I saw a video on the BioLogos website entitled Paul’s Adam. Even the title caused concern. The apostle Paul alludes to Genesis in a number of places in his epistles, but two places in particular refer directly to Adam. These are Romans 5 and 1 Corinthians 15. In both cases, Adam is compared to Jesus.
When I watched the video, I heard the featured theologians say that Paul got it wrong. These supposedly Bible-believing theologians were explaining that Adam was never a real person, but that they did not expect the apostle Paul to know that, and, therefore, the lesson drawn by Paul is still true.
The lesson that Paul draws, in brief, is this: Adam was our representative in Eden. Jesus was our representative on the cross. “For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.” The analogy made between Adam and Jesus in both passages is so close that logic would tell us that the lesson would be undermined if Adam did not exist.
It seems that some self-avowed conservative theologians are playing with fire these days. The idea that “it’s okay, if Paul was wrong” is not an acceptable answer. The more humble approach is to acknowledge that if Paul, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, told us that Adam was real, then he most certainly was.