but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you will surely die.”
“Behold, all souls are Mine; the soul of the father as well as the soul of the son is Mine. The soul who sins will die.
Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, so also death was passed on to all men, because all sinned.
And they will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”
so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness, to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
But the gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, abound to the many!
Matthew Henry Commentary
6:21-23 The pleasure and profit of sin do not deserve to be called fruit. Sinners are but ploughing iniquity, sowing vanity, and reaping the same. Shame came into the world with sin, and is still the certain effect of it. The end of sin is death. Though the way may seem pleasant and inviting, yet it will be bitterness in the latter end. From this condemnation the believer is set at liberty, when made free from sin. If the fruit is unto holiness, if there is an active principle of true and growing grace, the end will be everlasting life; a very happy end! Though the way is up-hill, though it is narrow, thorny, and beset, yet everlasting life at the end of it is sure. The gift of God is eternal life. And this gift is through Jesus Christ our Lord. Christ purchased it, prepared it, prepares us for it, preserves us to it; he is the All in all in our salvation.
Gill’s Exposition of the Entire Bible
For the wages of sin is death,…. By sin, is meant every sin, original sin, actual sin, every kind of sin, lesser and greater: the “death” which sin deserves, is a corporeal death; which is not owing to the original nature and constitution of men; nor merely to the divine appointment; but to sin, and the decree of God, on account of it; which is inflicted on Christless sinners, as a punishment for sin, though not on believers as such, because Christ has took away the sting and curse of it: a death of diseases and afflictions also follows upon sin, as its proper demerit; which are properly punishments to wicked men, and are occasioned by sin in believers: there is a death of the soul, which comes by sin, which lies in an alienation from God, in a loss of the image of God, and in a servitude to sin; and there is an eternal death, the just wages of sin, which lies in a separation of soul and body from God, and in a sense of divine wrath to all eternity; and which is here meant, as is clear from its antithesis, “eternal life”, in the next clause. Now this is “the wages” of sin; sin does in its own nature produce it, and excludes from life; it is the natural issue of it; sin is committed against an infinite God, and righteously deserves such a death; it is its just wages by law. The Greek word signifies soldiers’ wages; see Luke 3:14.
This verse may well be the apex of the book of Romans and perhaps the whole of Scripture as it conveys the essentials of the Gospel of Christ. Thankfully God gives us more than we deserve, or least the opportunity of receiving it.
There are gifts which little forethought was made by the giver. Maybe even a re-gift. The best gifts are made by someone who really knows what the receiver deeply needs or truly desires. On the other hand, sometimes we receive a gift which is of little value because receiver isn’t appreciative, desiring or already owns the gift.
The thing is that with salvation or any gift to have immediate and lasting value, is that it must be:
OFFERED: If Christ never went up on that old rugged cross and if He didn’t love us as John 3:16 tell us: “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.” Thankfully is says ‘whoever believes’ and God loved the ‘world’ not just a few elect. He loved us while we were still ensnared in our inherited sin. There is no gift without God offering first and foremost. The deal is dead without Jesus.
OPENED: A door like a gift must be opened to receive it. We read in Revelation 3:20: “’Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will dine with him, and he with Me.“ All relationships begin with an outreach and then a response. A formal gathering starts with an invite and then requires a responding attendance. By our free will, we must open this most precious gift.
CHERISH: Sometimes we receive a gift and it’s not cherished. It’s set to the side, put away in the closet, eventually forgotten and pitched to the trash. Hopefully, the gift is reclaimed before it’s gone for good. Could there be anything worse than receiving just what you need but disrespecting or ignoring its worth and true value? It reminds me the story Jesus told in 14:16-24 : ”Parable of the Dinner
16 But He said to him, “A man was giving a big dinner, and he invited many; 17and at the dinner hour he sent his slave to say to those who had been invited, ‘Come; for everything is ready now.’ 18“But they all alike began to make excuses. The first one said to him, ‘I have bought a piece of land and I need to go out and look at it; please consider me excused.’ 19“Another one said, ‘I have bought five yoke of oxen, and I am going to try them out; please consider me excused.’ 20“Another one said, ‘I have married a wife, and for that reason I cannot come.’ 21“And the slave came back and reported this to his master. Then the head of the household became angry and said to his slave, ‘Go out at once into the streets and lanes of the city and bring in here the poor and crippled and blind and lame.’ 22“And the slave said, ‘Master, what you commanded has been done, and still there is room.’ 23“And the master said to the slave, ‘Go out into the highways and along the hedges, and compel them to come in, so that my house may be filled. 24‘For I tell you, none of those men who were invited shall taste of my dinner.’”
What a sad story. This guest cleary did not value and cherish the host. When the times comes and they are starving, it will be too late. We must look to eternity which our souls were created for and not get content with the trappings of this fallen world.
RECIPROCATED: Any and every long term relationship requires reciprocation. It’s rather pathetic when a nice gift is given and the receiver doesn’t respond with gratitude and thankfulness or worse; a sense of entitlement. God commands us to share the good news of the Gospel, to be a light on the hill. He expects use to take our gifts and do good with them. Givers gain! We read in Acts 20:35b, “the Lord Jesus, that He Himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.'”
How can we possibly reciprocate to God our Father a gift when He literally has everything? The same way a young child does with a parent’s Christmas gift. He or she does so by being appreciative, thankful, obedient, kind and sharing.
Living in America is a blessing and a curse. It’s a curse because too many people are fat and satisfied. We don’t have many needs and thus have a hard valuing gifts. And its a blessing because we have much, particularly the access to lots of quality teaching, freedom and access to the Word of God.
What gifts has God given each of us? Certainly life. Physical temporary life. And more importantly, eternal life…which requires our involvement. It’s a different expectation when giving an infant a gift and a teenager one. God wants us to use our time, talent and treasure to maximize these gifts for His most awesome glory because there is nothing more special than that in all of creation; God’s glory.
Let us remember what Christ said, “From everyone who has been given much, much will be required”
Good God, I thank you for offering and prompting me to accept Your precious gift of eternal life when I was in dire need. When I thought all was lost, you gave me what I needed most.