The effects of the Fall have been far-reaching -- |By one man sin entered the world|(Rom.5:12). Not only was the entire human family involved but the whole |Kosmos| was affected. When Adam and Eve sinned, God not only pronounced sentence upon them and the Serpent but He cursed the ground as well -- |And unto Adam He said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it, Cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life: thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee| (Gen.3:17, 18). These words suggest a solemn and far-reaching line of thought -- Sin not only brings punishment to the actual transgressor but it also involves others in its terrible consequences. The punishment which was meted out to the antediluvians was not limited to the human family, it fell upon the lower orders of creation as well -- all were swept away by the flood! The judgments which God sent upon the haughty Pharaoh extended to the fishes in the rivers and the cattle in the fields as well as to all his subjects! When the Angel of Death passed through the land of the Nile, he slew all the first-born of beasts as well as the first-born of the Egyptians (Ex.12:12). When Jehovah's wrath visited the land of Palestine in the days of Israel's apostasy it descended upon the animal kingdom as well as the human, for we read, |How do the beasts groan! the herds of cattle are perplexed, because they have no pasture; yea, the flocks of sheep are made desolate| (Joel 1:18). And again, |How long shall the land mourn, and the herbs of every field wither for the wickedness of them that dwell therein? the beasts are consumed, and the birds; because they said, He shall not see our last end| (Jer.12:4).
To what extent the entire universe has suffered the evil consequences of sin it is impossible to say, but certain it is that they are not limited to our earth. Adam was not the first offender, for before his fall Satan also had apostatized from his Maker. What other worlds were affected by Satan's fall Scripture does not inform us, yet we may infer from those principles which are revealed in God's Word that the awful consequences of Satan's rebellion were far-reaching in their scope. Astronomical observation reveals the fact that there are numbers of far-distant worlds upon which no life exists, while Scripture speaks of |wandering stars.| The moon is a ruined planet where Death holds absolute sway and death is the wages of sin. If then Adam's transgression brought down upon the earth which he inhabited a curse from God, may we not soberly conclude that the fall of the highest of all God's creatures brought down a Divine curse upon those worlds over which he may have exercised a delegated rulership? Be this as it may, Scripture does reveal the fact that the consequences of sin have reached far beyond the four corners of our earth. We read |The heavens are not clean in His sight| (Job 15:15), and again, in Rom.8:22 we are told, |For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.|
In the last mentioned Scripture we learn that the whole creation is in pain and misery. Surely this is abnormal. Surely things were not like this at the beginning, nor were they;' and surely things will not continue thus for ever, nor will they. We quote now the entire passage in which the above statement is found -- |For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed to usward. For the earnest expectation of the creation waiteth for the revealing of the Sons of God. For the creation was subjected to vanity, not of its own will, but by reason of Him who subjected it in hope that the creation itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the liberty of the glory of the children of God| (Rom.8:18-21, R. V.). The order of thought here appears to be as follows:- The whole of God's creation, which is directly concerned and connected with our earth, (The |whole creation| can not be taken absolutely for the unfallen angels must be excluded) suffered the consequences of Adam's sin, being brought under the bondage of corruption as the direct result. But this |bondage| is not to last for ever. A hope is set before creation: a promise has been given that it shall be |delivered| and in expectation of the fulfillment of this promise and the realization of this hope creation now |waits.| The |hope| of creation is linked with |the manifestation of the sons of God| and |the liberty of their glory.| The sons of God will be manifested or revealed with their Redeemer at the time of His Return for it is written |When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with Him in glory|(Col.3:4). It is at the Second Coming of Christ, His return in |glory| that His people shall enter into the liberty of their glory. Then will it be that creation shall be delivered from its present bondage of corruption. Thus we learn that though the whole creation has suffered in consequence of sin, yet shall it soon share in the glorious benefits of the Death of Christ who came to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself. How clear then is the need of our Redeemer's Return! None but creation's Creator (John 1:3) can emancipate it from its sufferings. Hence we say that the present lamentations of Creation necessitate and demand the personal Return of our Lord.