Summary: The Separation.
II. THE SEPARATION.
A. We have already seen the Standard of Deity.
B. Sin Debt.
1. Inception of sin.
As we have already demonstrated this took place in the angelic realm.
2. Imputed sin.
Not only did Satan persuade some of the angels to follow him, but he was the one in the Garden who was working behind that serpent to tempt Eve.
a. The Sin – a violation of God’s law (Gen. 2:16-17; 3:6).
Now God Himself becomes a barrier between God and man. Man violated God’s holiness, therefore His justice responded with wrath. God still loved man but He could not compromise His holiness for the sake of His love. Only if there was a just way to deal with man’s sin and satisfy God’s offended holy Character could His love be experienced by man.
b. The Separation.
1. This is related to the fact that God is Holy.
When Adam sinned, a separation from a holy God took place. Thus, there is a wall, a barrier, a hindrance between God and man. That Hindrance is the very Perfection of God.
Man being sinful cannot remove that separation and come into God’s presence (Isa. 64:6/Jer. 17:9).
They used to play a game in California; it was called jumping to Catalina. They had a pier down in Santa Monica where they would play this game. Guys would take a long run and a flying leap into the Pacific Ocean. Some would go farther than others, but they all had one thing in common. None could jump all the way to Catalina, some 26 miles away. Some seemingly can jump farther to God, but none can jump far enough to satisfy God’s righteousness.
Of course, they tried:
• Self-righteousness. One inadequate way we try to deal with our sin is seeking to produce a righteousness based on our own works. We try to make up for what we have done by good deeds, especially religious deeds. But we can do nothing to make up for our sins by what we do. Judas betrayed Jesus, and, in Mt. 27:1-5, felt remorse or guilt. He launched operation self-righteousness. He went back to those and confessed he had betrayed innocent blood. But it was worthless because he was trying to do something to pay for the deed he had done by giving back the money. Adam and Eve also felt a sense of guilt immediately so they tried to hide from God. The progression: first there was sin, which immediately produced a sense of guilt; which produced estrangement from God, which brings a fear of judgment and rightly so. Their making of the fig leaves to cover themselves was an act of self-righteousness which God soundly rejected.
• Self-justification. We begin to say I am not responsible, it was not my fault. We blame society or someone else. Adam blamed Eve, it was that woman YOU gave me! In reality, Adam had no one to blame for his sin but his own choice!
• Today people try to deal with their guilt with Self-deification. They seek to deal with their guilt by saying there is no God, if there is no God then there is no standard to violate. In essence they seek to take the place of God, decreeing that their sin is really no sin at all.
Yet truth remains, there is a God, and a violation of His Person results in just separation from God unto His judgment.
2. This removed the intimacy.
• The Mind. Man’s fallen mind no longer had the capacity or the desire to know God. A radical change took place in man’s mind: It became dark (Rom. 1:21/Eph. 4:17). Dwight Pentecost noted:
By the use of this word "darkened" the apostle is emphasizing the fact that the mind of the natural man, of itself, has no power to receive light. It cannot receive divine revelations. Just as a fish born in the Mammoth Cave in Kentucky without the capacity of sight cannot respond to light-no matter how bright-focused upon it because it has no sensory perception, so the men born into this world cannot, of themselves, respond to light from God because the intellect has been darkened in respect to divine truth.
It became Depraved (Gen. 6:5); Distorted (Rom. 1:22); Denounces God’s law (Rom. 8:6-7); it has no capacity to Discover God’s revelation, nor does it want to (1 Cor. 2:14/Eph. 4:17, “empty” of the things of God); is Degenerate, totally given over to evil (Rom. 1:28); it Delights only in sensual, earthly, natural things (Rom. 8:7/2 Cor. 4:4/Phil. 3:19/Col. 2:18); Dictatorial, it is filled with conceit and pride (Col. 2:18); Defiled (Tit. 1:15/1 Tim. 6:5); is characterized by Death (Rom. 8:6).
A side note: Even as believers we still have such a mind! As one noted: