Family Lessons 46: Poisoned DNA

Most of our natural physical features we inherit from our ancestors. We may inherit personality and mental characteristics, too, as well as our family's location and inclinations toward particular professions or trade. My 9x great-grandfather was Martin Howarth, of Gisburn Forest. He died 12 March 1727. His son and my 8x g-gf, Martin Howarth junior, died 27 March 1728, who was also of the Forest. They actually died within a few days of each other, seeing as New Year’s Day was then 25 March. They shared the same name, the same address and even the same month of death. I dare say they also looked alike.

Last month, I visited New South Wales. I could see the similarities between my mother and her late mother, who was responsible for raising me. I enjoyed pointing this out, much to the former’s chagrin. She and I also shared characteristics, ones I might not readily perceive.

Grandfathers Howorth also shared a human nature- a sinful, human nature. The Authorised Version calls it 'the flesh' and it refers to our fallen state, our in-built inclination towards selfishness and self-worship. Such a nature is incompatible with heaven, which is why the Lord gives us a new heart upon our conversion. Messrs Howorth sadly left me no property, nor even tokens of a personal touch, yet they bequeathed me their natures, as well as some inevitable genetic characteristics. Yet Christ came that He might disrupt and reverse Adam's poisonous inheritance; the Holy Spirit remakes us in His image, ahead of the new, resurrection body. I gladly honour my ancient mothers and fathers, but I better honour the Lord Jesus, who rescued me from their legacy:

So God looked upon the earth, and indeed it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted their way on the earth. Genesis 6:12

Therefore, as through one man’s offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man’s obedience many will be made righteous. Romans 5:18-1

Adam’s likeness, Lord, efface,
Stamp Thine image in its place:
Second Adam from above,
Reinstate us in Thy love.
Let us Thee, though lost, regain,
Thee, the Life, the inner man:
Oh, to all Thyself impart,
Formed in each believing heart.

-Charles Wesley

Image by lisichik from Pixabay