THE FIRST AND SECOND ADAMS AND EVES CONTRASTED

Genesis 3:15 contains the promise of the redemption of mankind after the Fall of Adam and Eve.  The Incarnation of the Christ was the manifestation of the promise and it was fulfilled with Jesus Christ's sacrificial death and glorious resurrection.  The New Testament portrays Jesus as the "Second Adam" whose obedience and sacrificial death on the cross undo Adam's disobedience [see Romans 5:12-21 and 1 Corinthians 15:45-49].  Jesus, the Second Adam, triumphed over the same temptations to which the first Adam fell into sin.

TEMPTATION: The first and second Adams contrasted:

1 John 2:16 Genesis 3:6 Luke 4:1-13
"If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father finds no place in him..." The First Adam: "Did God really say you were not to eat from any of the trees...?" Second Adam = Jesus of Nazareth: "Then the devil said to Him...
the lust of the flesh: "disordered bodily desires" "The woman saw the tree was good to eat.."

"tell this stone to turn into a loaf"

the lust of the eyes: "disordered desires of the eyes" "..and pleasing to the eye, and..." "the devil...showed Him all the kingdoms of the world"
the pride of life: "pride in possession" "that it was enticing for the wisdom that it could give." "If you are the Son ...throw Yourself down from here"

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In Romans 5:15-19 St. Paul contrasts Adam and Christ as "alike" but "unalike"

ADAM AND CHRIST ALIKE ADAM AND CHRIST UNALIKE
Both Adam and Christ had an affect upon the whole human race Sin and death came from Adam while righteousness and life came from Christ
Both endured the temptation of Satan Adam failed and Christ was victorious
Through both Adam and Christ humanity receives an "inheritance" Through Adam's failure humanity inherits death, original sin and personal sin becomes a plague on mankind. Through Christ's victory humanity inherits adoption into God family and the promise of eternal life.
Both were human men Jesus was both human and divine
Both the acts of Adam and Jesus invoke a divine verdict Satan stood behind the act of Adam while the grace of God stood behind Christ; the verdict behind Adam's act is judgment while the verdict behind Jesus' is acquittal
Both Adam and Jesus exercised their free will Adam willingly fell from grace and Jesus willingly laid down His life in sacrifice for all mankind
Both were born into the world as sinless and immortal beings Adam lost his immortality when he fell from grace while Jesus remained pure and sinless and through His sacrifice and Resurrection has made God's gift of immortality once again available to man

M. Hunt Copyright © Agape Bible Study. Permissions All Rights Reserved. 2006

Just as there is a Second Adam there is also a Second Eve.  Mary, the Virgin Mother of Christ is the Second Eve.  Just as the First Eve cooperated in the Fall of man so the Second Eve cooperated in the redemption and salvation of the entire human race.

SALVATION: The two Eves contrasted:

THE VIRGIN EVE THE VIRGIN MARY
Daughter of the first Covenant Daughter of the Sinai Covenant
Pledged obedience under the covenant Pledged obedience under the covenant
Eve's disobedience resulted in the fall into sin of the entire human race.  The result was death, physically and spiritually. Mary's obedience to God resulted in the offer of the gift of salvation to the entire human race.  The result was eternal life

Catechism of the Catholic Church# 494  ".....'Being obedient she became the cause of salvation for herself and for the whole human race.' Hence not a few of the early Fathers gladly assert 'The knot of Eve's disobedience was united by Mary's obedience: what the virgin Eve bound through her disbelief, Mary loosened by her faith.' Comparing her with Eve, they call Mary 'the Mother of the living' and frequently claim" 'Death through Eve, life through Mary."
[CCC quoting St. Irenaeus, Epiphanius, and St. Jerome]

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