Forrest Darrell Moyer
For a great Bible question, we turn to Genesis 8:9: “And the Lord God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?” God had formed man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man had become a living soul. He was given a help mate for him in the form of Eve, his wife. They were placed in the Garden of Eden, a paradise on earth, where they were in a happy relationship with God. Satan came and tempted Eve to eat of the fruit of the tree of which God had said, “Thou shalt not eat thereof.” When she had eaten, she gave to Adam and he ate. It was immediately after this sin of disobedience that God came into the Garden and asked the question, “Where art thou?” “Adam, you were in holiness and purity, but where are you now?”
This question should come to everyone of us with as much force as it came to Adam in the Garden. When we ask the question, we are not inquiring into the matter of where you are physically. You know that. Where are you spiritually? What is the condition of your soul, your most valuable possession? Should your soul be required of you today, where would it be? Would you be saved or lost? “Where art thou?”
The State Of Sin
There are different states or spiritual conditions in which we are born (Matt. 18:3; 19:14). But we are primarily concerned with the state of those who have passed from that condition. Having reached the age of accountability, we enter a state of sin. Concerning the Ephesians Paul said: “And you hath he made alive who were dead in trespasses and sins” (Eph. 2:1). At one time these people were dead in sins—separated from God and that which is holy and just and good.
To the Romans he said, “Ye were servants of sin” (Rom. 6:17). To the Corinthians Paul wrote,
Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolators, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with men, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you (1 Cor. 6:9-11).
Hence a person may be in a state of sin. He is dead in trespasses and in sins, serving sin, unrighteous. The question is, “Where art thou?”
State Of Salvation
Shall we inquire into the spiritual condition of these same people after their conversion to God? Of the Ephesians we learn that “now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were afar off are made nigh by the blood of Christ” (Eph. 2:13). “And might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross…” (v. 16). Thus those who once were dead in sins are made nigh, reconciled, unto God.
What about the Romans? “And being made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness” (Rom. 6:18). And the Corinthians who were unrighteous are now “washed, sanctified, justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God” (1 Cor. 6:11).
The very people, then, who were in a state of sin and iniquity are now described as being reconciled, made free from sin, becoming servants of righteousness, washed, sanctified and justified. Now the question is, “Where art thou?” Are you in a state of salvation? Where are you spiritually?
What Made The Difference?
Another pertinent question is, “What made the difference between these two states?” On one side they were in sin. On the other, they were made free from those sins and were classified as servants of righteousness. What changed them? Why was there a difference? Let us see. Of the Ephesians Paul stated, “For by grace are ye saved through faith” (Eph. 2:8). The means of their salvation was the grace of God made accessible by faith.
Writing to the Romans, Paul declared, “Ye obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. Being then made free from sin, ye become the servants of righteousness” (Rom. 6:17-18). What made the difference? They obeyed from the heart the form of doctrine. The Corinthians received the Gospel by which, says Paul, they were saved (1 Cor. 15:1-3). How was each of these groups saved? They were saved by the grace of God coupled with the reception of the Gospel and obedience to it on the part of man.
What Did The People Do?
“And many of the Corinthians hearing, believed, and were baptized” (Acts 18:8). Therefore, in receiving the Gospel they believed and were baptized that they might be saved by that Gospel. The Ephesians, who were saved by grace through faith, heard (Eph. 1:13), believed (Eph. 1:13), repented (Acts 20:21), and were baptized in the name of the Lord (Acts 19:5). The Romans were buried with their Lord in baptism (Rom. 6:3-5).
Friend, have you believed wholly in the Lord? Have you repented? Have you been buried in baptism for the forgiveness of your sins? Where art thou?