“The sum of all that Christ purchased is the Holy Ghost. God is he of whom the purchase is made, God is the purchase and the price, and God is the thing purchased: God is the Alpha and the Omega in this work. The great thing purchased by Jesus Christ for us is communion with God, which is only in having the Spirit; ’tis participation of Christ’s fullness, and having grace for grace, which is only in having of that Spirit which he has without measure.“- Jonathan Edwards, The Miscellanies 402.
What were the benefits of being human in those first completed days of creation, when the earth was new, vibrant, and unadulterated? What did humanity posess that made the Garden a more glorious space than anything since? Surely we can answer with many facts. There was no pain, no death, no disease, no strife. There was abundance, there was no need, there was true joy and satisfaction. But all can be summed up in one truth. Humanity had communion with God. Per their union with the Godhead, the First Adam and his wife experienced perfect fellowship. And communion with God includes all other facts, all other blessings. What was lost, then, when Eve believed the lies of the serpent, when Adam willingly walked into rebellion? They lost all blessings. They were immersed in spiritual death and poverty. Physical death began to rule the fates of mankind, instead of everlasting life. And man was not the only creature to feel these effects, for “the whole creation was subjected to futility,” (Romans 8:20). All creation was subjected to darkness and decay, to strife and corruption, because in that moment communion with God was lost. Where there is no communion with God, there is no blessing. And so all of humanity, under the First Adam, shared in the termination of fellowship with God. And here I thank Jonathan Edwards for such a fresh look at Christ! What then becomes the goal of redemption, the goal of God saving His people? It is communion, it is fellowship! To bring man back into communion is to share in all of the blessings of God! And what is the only way mankind can have spiritual and physical communion with the Godhead? It is by being indwelt by the Spirit. Galatians tells us, “Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us- for it is written, ‘Cursed is everyone who is hanged on a tree’- so that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we might receive the promised Spirit through faith,” (3:13-14). God undertakes a rescue mission. Yes to forgive us of our sins. Yes to count us righteous. Yes to make a people for His own possession. Yes to undo the destruction of the First Adam. But all of this can, in fact, be summed up in this; God was and is restoring us to communion and fellowship with Himself. So Christ becomes the purchaser. Jesus becomes sin for His people, to redeem and buy them back from slavery and in it all to purchase for His people communion with God. And fellowship exists only by His Spirit. He becomes the curse, death and condemnation, for us, so that we can be forgiven, cleaned, counted righteous, adopted. And the ultimate goal of Christ’s suffering becomes that of securing for His people the Spirit. Why? Because where the Spirit dwells in His people, there is communion with God (Romans 8:9-11), there is ultimate blessing and ultimate security. And surely union with the Godhead by the Spirit, and Christ in particular, means regeneration, justification, sanctification, glorification, and ultimate redemption. The Spirit applies and works them all within us. Communion by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit has been purchased for God’s people from God the Almighty Father by blood of the Son. In the Second Adam, Christians gain what was lost in the First, and come to walk once again, side by side, with the God of the universe, in whom we “live, move, and have our being,” (Acts. 17:28).