5:12 Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death came through sin, and so death spread to all because all have sinned-
5:13 sin was indeed in the world before the law, but sin is not reckoned when there is no law.
5:14 Yet death exercised dominion from Adam to Moses, even over those whose sins were not like the transgression of Adam, who is a type of the one who was to come.
5:15 But the free gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died through the one man’s trespass, much more surely have the grace of God and the free gift in the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, abounded for the many.
5:16 And the free gift is not like the effect of the one man’s sin. For the judgment following one trespass brought condemnation, but the free gift following many trespasses brings justification.
5:17 If, because of the one man’s trespass, death exercised dominion through that one, much more surely will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness exercise dominion in life through the one man, Jesus Christ.
5:18 Therefore just as one man’s trespass led to condemnation for all, so one man’s act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all.
5:19 For just as by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous.
Salvation could have only been attained by Jesus Christ. He was the only one who was able to rectify what sin had done to this world and save us from eternal punishment. Jesus was the Savior who was able to accomplish this task because He was sinless and made perfect.
Paul here is explaining that Salvation is a free gift that was the result of the worlds sin. The entire world was being judged and it took one man, our Savior, Jesus Christ to bring an end to sin’s grip on our lives. Think about the major sacrifice that was paid. Jesus took on the entire world’s sin on the cross. Our disobedience is what lead Him there and it was His unconditional love that accomplished it.
This was an act of both power and love that is unparalleled and unmatched by anything else in this world. Our redemption could have only been accomplished through Jesus’s work on the cross. He paid a debt that was ours to pay and He did it because His love and Grace for the world trumps our sin.
The grace of God that Paul is communicating to the Roman is church is that even though humans are the authors of sin and destruction, God still chose to dwell with us and even became one of us so that through the sacrifice of Jesus, all the sins of man can be erased. The actions of one man brought condemnation on the world. The righteousness of another, Jesus, brought salvation to the world. It is an interesting thesis that Paul is positing to the church. How is it that one man can bring salvation to everyone? In the same way that one man brought sin to the world.
Yet, in spite of our sins God still values us enough to show us undeserved grace. Is it this grace that changes the hearts of those who accept is. Grace will always be more powerful than retribution. Punishment might cause a person to modify their behavior so that they do not get punished again. But grace changes how a person feels and thinks. This is why grace is God’s most powerful tool and why Jesus’ sacrifice for our sins is the ultimate test for the hearts of humanity.