The Basis for Solving Mankind’s Problems
MANKIND’S sinful condition and the resultant problems came about through the loss of a proper relationship with God due to our forefather Adam’s disobedience. The basis for solving the many serious problems facing us therefore must be a provision whereby we can regain the position of perfect sonship that Adam enjoyed prior to his transgression. We must be brought into perfect unity with the Creator. As the One who really cares about us, Jehovah God has already laid the basis for this.
To understand what he has done, the reasons for it and why his arrangement will free mankind from weaknesses and imperfections, we must look at matters from his standpoint. The Bible reveals that God is righteous and “holy,” pure to the superlative degree. (Ex. 39:30; Ps. 89:14; Isa. 6:3; John 17:11) Therefore those who are sinful, imperfect, unclean or impure cannot on their own merit enter into an approved relationship with him. (Col. 1:21) Only by having their sins atoned for or covered over can they do so. The arrangement for making atonement for sins would have to be in full harmony with God’s righteousness and holiness. His intelligent creatures should be able to recognize the justness of God’s arrangement. To appreciate what was involved, we need to go back to the very start of the human race.
The Bible tells us that when the first man Adam transgressed God’s law, he sold himself and his unborn offspring into slavery to sin and death. (Rom. 5:12-19; 7:14-25) All the descendants of Adam thus came to be in need of release. Justice required the payment of a price.
To illustrate, a father might misuse his assets and incur a tremendous debt. Should his creditors be required to ignore his debt to spare his children from suffering? After the father’s death, would it be right to let the family get deeper and deeper into debt without ever having to be concerned about reckless spending? Would this not have a bad effect even on persons not directly involved, emboldening them to waste their own or other people’s assets?
How could matters be set straight if the children were infected with their father’s ways and prone to waste assets and resources? How could the debts be paid off and the children be aided to overcome their weaknesses?
Someone outside the family would have to step in and care for the debts. Then, in the case of the children who gave evidence of really wanting to avoid their father’s course, this outsider might assume responsibility for any debts they incurred until such time as he is able to help them to overcome their weaknesses.
This is similar to what Jehovah God purposed for bringing about the release of mankind from enslavement to sin and death. The first step was making provision for the payment of the redemption price. What was the price? Adam had grossly misused his asset, his perfect human life, forfeiting it by rebellion against God. He thereby lost perfect human life for his descendants. The redemption price for his offspring, therefore, had to be of a value corresponding to that which was forfeited. This would be in harmony with the principle of justice found in the Mosaic law: “Soul will be for soul.”—Deut. 19:21.
None of Adam’s descendants could provide that valuable price, as none possessed perfect human life. The Bible says: “Not one of them can by any means redeem even a brother, nor give to God a ransom for him; (and the redemption price of their soul is so precious that it has ceased to time indefinite).”—Ps. 49:7, 8.
Jehovah God, however, provided that valuable price in the person of his own Son. He transferred that one’s life from the heavenly realm to the womb of the virgin Mary. In this way, the child to which Mary gave birth, Jesus, came to be a perfect human son of God. (Luke 1:35; Phil. 2:5-7) The man Jesus Christ could therefore lay down his perfect human life in sacrifice. Matt. 20:28.
When he did so, Jesus Christ furnished the exact price needed for ransoming or buying the human race. However, for individuals to have their “debts” canceled or their sins forgiven on the basis of the atoning value of Jesus’ sacrifice, they must take advantage of this provision on God’s terms. Having supplied a legal basis for forgiveness of sins, along with requirements for having them forgiven, Jehovah God maintains his own righteousness when dealing with imperfect humans who sincerely want to serve him. In no way is he encouraging lawlessness.—Matt. 6:12; Rom. 3:25, 26; 1 John 1:9.
Already over nineteen hundred years have passed since the human race was purchased with the precious blood of Jesus Christ and since his resurrection to immortal heavenly life. (Acts 13:34-37) Yet humans are still dying. Why? Because God’s time is yet future for applying the atoning benefits of Christ’s sacrifice to the point of liberating mankind from imperfection. (Rev. 22:1, 2) Does this mean that God has done nothing further to set the human race free from its weaknesses and disabilities?