Chapter 2
The Provided Blood of Jesus

The Remedy - God's Mercy

Everyone has sinned.

…there is no man that sinneth not… (1 Kings 8:46)

There is no man, woman or child who has ever lived, who has not sinned. This is the tragic state of fallen mankind. Without exception, all have sinned!

They are all gone aside, they are all together become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no, not one. (Ps. 14:3)

For there is not a righteous man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not. (Eccl. 7:20, Hebrew)

All sin must be punished, and the punishment of sin is death in all its forms, both in this life and the next.

…the soul [i.e., person] that sinneth…shall die. (Ezek. 18:4)

All men have sinned and therefore all men deserve to be punished, and to be punished by God (Luke 3:17c), and to be punished by God eternally (Matt. 25:41, 46).

God is perfect in holiness and justice, and He will not tolerate sin which is a violation of His own nature. God’s holy law was broken by Adam, and by all men; justice demands punishment.

…I will not justify the wicked. (Ex. 23:7)

God is jealous, and the LORD revengeth; the LORD revengeth, and is furious; the LORD will take vengeance on His adversaries, and He reserveth wrath for His enemies. The LORD is slow to anger, and great in power, and will not at all acquit the wicked [i.e., declare them not guilty, or release them from punishment]… (Nah. 1:2-3)

God will not ever forget about sin and act as if it never happened. God will always punish sin, the least sin. By the necessity of His own nature and being, God must punish sin.

God is perfectly just and righteous; He is the moral Judge of the universe:

…Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right? (Gen. 18:25)

As such, He must give to everyone his due with unvarying impartiality:

For the Son of Man shall come in the glory of His Father with His angels; and then He shall reward every man according to his works. (Matt. 16:27)

A very inadequate analogy is that a traffic fine must be paid; the law of the land demands it. With God, His own being demands that sin be punished. The least sin is a violation of God’s infinite holiness and therefore incurs infinite divine wrath and punishment:

For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all. (Jam. 2:10)

The doom of the fallen angels is evidence that just one act of rebellion against God is eternally fatal.

The Nature of Sin

While sin can be against other men, or against yourself, all sin is ultimately against God:

If a soul [i.e., person] sin, and commit a trespass against the LORD, and lie unto his neighbour… (Lev. 6:2)

Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight… (Ps. 51:4)

Sin is not just a passive weakness or simple imperfection in man. Sin is, in a sense, actively and violently opposed to God Himself. All sin is “against God,” and this is why sin must be confessed to God. He is the One who will judge man for his sin, and He is the One who forgives sin. Sin is a violent contradiction to and “opposer” of God – of His own self. All sin is a violation of God’s own nature and being, and therefore must be punished by God.

“Punishment is the constitutional reaction of God’s being against moral evil – the self-assertion of infinite holiness against its antagonist and would-be destroyer. In God this demand is devoid of all passion, and is consistent with infinite benevolence. It is a demand that cannot be evaded, since the holiness from which it springs is unchanging.”12

God’s wrath and righteous anger will be poured out upon all sin and upon all sinners. All men, rich and poor, great and small, famous and unknown, have sinned against God and are under His wrath. None can escape. This is why God commands all men everywhere to repent (Acts 17:30), and why all men must be born again (John 3:3, 7).

God will not compromise with sin; He cannot compromise with sin. Light does not ever compromise with darkness. It extinguishes it. God does not ever compromise with sin. He punishes it.

Sin will be punished. All men have sinned. Therefore all men are, from conception, abiding under the punishment of sin – the eternal punishment of sin. This is the condition of mankind: lost forever, without hope.

But, praise God, He did not leave us there! God sent His Son to die for us, and when Jesus died on the cross He died in our place. Jesus bore our punishment, so we wouldn’t have to.

Vicarious Substitution

The traffic fine must be paid. Our “fine” was death. Someone had to die. This is what Jesus did on the cross. He died in our place. He paid our “fine.” For divine justice to be satisfied, God demands a death to be “paid.” Our sins must be punished before we can be accepted by God and restored to fellowship with Him.

…without shedding of blood is no remission. (Heb. 9:22)

Hebrews 9:22 says that without the shedding of blood there can be no remission or forgiveness of sins. This is because “the life of the flesh is in the blood” (Lev. 17:11); therefore blood must be shed or a life given in death. That is what Jesus did on the cross. He died. He shed His blood.

Jesus bore the punishment of our sins, in our place, and thereby set us free from that punishment.

Jesus’ death on the cross was “vicarious.” That means He died in our place. The holiness of God demanded man’s death as the just and righteous penalty for his sins, but the love and mercy of God provided a “substitute” to bear that penalty in man’s place.

Jesus took your place on the cross. You should have been put to death. You deserved it. You should have spent eternity in hell. But because of God’s love for you, He put Himself in your place and died in your place.

But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. (Rom. 5:8)

Jesus didn’t have to die. He is the only man who has ever lived who did not deserve to die, because He was holy and sinless. He voluntarily chose to die to bear your punishment so that you would not have to be punished for your sins.

This is put another way in Matthew 20:

…the Son of Man came…to give His life a ransom for many. (Matt. 20:28)

Jesus gave His life as a “ransom for many.” A “ransom” is the price paid to obtain the freedom of a captive. We were captives to sin and to its penalty of death. Jesus, who was sinless and deserved no death, bore our penalty in our place and thus set us free from the obligation to suffer that penalty.14

Jesus died vicariously. He died instead of us:

…One died for all… (2 Cor. 5:14)

The Greek text in 2 Corinthians 5:14 says, “One died instead of all.” You should have died but Jesus died instead of you. He bore the punishment of your sins in your place to satisfy divine justice and to set you free from that punishment.

…one Man should die for the people…that the whole nation perish not. (John 11:50)

Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us… (Gal. 3:13)

For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God… (1 Pet. 3:18)

A wonderful type of Jesus’ substitutionary death is found in Genesis chapter 22. In verse 13, God provided a ram to die instead of Isaac. Isaac was going to die, but God gave a ram to die in his place.

A further illustration is Barabbas. He was freed and Christ died in his place. In the same way, we should have died but Jesus died instead of us. Therefore if we receive the benefits of Christ’s sacrifice for sin, we need not be punished for our sins.

All men have sinned and therefore deserve punishment. Jesus, who was sinless and innocent, and deserved no punishment, took our place and bore the punishment of our sins in our place, and thus set us free from that punishment. Jesus paid our penalty; therefore we don’t have to. He bore our punishment and by bearing it He took it away from us. Therefore there is now no legal condemnation whatsoever for those who are in Christ (Romans 8:1). This means that we (i.e., all those who are “in Christ,” having been born again and having received the benefits of what Jesus accomplished on the cross) are absolved from all legal guilt. There is no legal condemnation from God to us. The penalty of the broken law cannot justly be inflicted upon us because Jesus has already borne it upon Himself. We are now free from all condemnation and from the curse of the broken law.

God’s justice will be satisfied. Sin must be punished. God could have punished you (you deserved it), but in His love and grace God gave His Son to stand in your place and bear your punishment.

Jesus didn’t suffer and die for any sin of His own. He was sinless and innocent, and deserved no death:

…no unrighteousness is in Him. (John 7:18)

…the prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me. (John 14:30)

…Christ…knew no sin… (2 Cor. 5:19-21)

…Jesus…was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. (Heb. 4:14-15)

…a Lamb without blemish and without spot: (1 Pet. 1:19)

Jesus died to bear your punishment. You sinned and therefore you deserved to be punished, but the Son of God, in His love, came Himself and took upon Himself flesh and bore your punishment in your place to satisfy divine justice.

Someone had to die – either the sinner or an innocent substitute. Jesus died and therefore God’s justice has been satisfied. This means that God is no longer angry with you,

…we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ: (Rom. 5:1)

…when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of His Son… (Rom. 5:10)

and that you’re free from the curse of the broken law.

There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus… (Rom. 8:1)

Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us… (Gal. 3:13)

Free From the Curse!

You deserved eternal misery, torment, anguish and pain, as well as sickness, disease, depression, trouble, despair and poverty in this life, and God has set you free from it all! And He did it almost 2000 years ago. You are free! Jesus has (past tense) redeemed you!

…we have now received the reconciliation. (Rom. 5:11, Greek)

There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus… (Rom. 8:1)

Jesus bore our punishment and therefore we don’t have to bear it. The penalty has been paid. The punishment has been meted out and God’s justice has been satisfied. Jesus bore away the curse and now we can receive the blessing of God:

Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law,…That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ… (Gal. 3:13-14)

God’s attitude toward the redeemed now is one of love and blessing:

Oh how great is thy goodness, which thou hast laid up for them that fear thee; which thou hast wrought for them that trust in thee… (Ps. 31:19)

…Let the LORD be magnified, which hath pleasure in the prosperity of His servant. (Ps. 35:27)

For the LORD God is a sun and shield: the LORD will give grace and glory: no good thing will He withhold from them that walk uprightly. (Ps. 84:11)

I am my Beloved’s, and my Beloved is mine…and His desire is toward me. (Song of Sol. 6:3; 7:10)

…as the bridegroom rejoiceth over the bride, so shall thy God rejoice over thee. (Is. 62:5)

The LORD hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee. (Jer. 31:3)

I will heal their backsliding, I will love them freely; for mine anger is turned away from him. (Hos. 14:4)

He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? (Rom. 8:32)

For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that ye through His poverty might be rich. (2 Cor. 8:9)

…God sent forth His Son…to redeem them…that we might receive the adoption of sons…Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ. (Gal. 4:4-7)

…the living God…giveth us richly all things to enjoy; (1 Tim. 6:17)

Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth. (3 John 2)

Jesus Dances Over Us With Joy!

This is what God has done in the cross of Christ! Where once there was wrath and anger, God looks at us now with joy and delight in His heart. Zephaniah 3:17 is an excellent picture of God’s attitude toward His redeemed people:

The LORD thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; He will save, He will rejoice over thee with joy; He will rest in His love, He will joy over thee with singing.

There is no longer alienation and enmity, but God is “in the midst” of His people in an abundance of mercy and grace. Then Zephaniah gives two contrasts in describing how God feels toward His redeemed. The phrase “He is silent in His love” (Hebrew) describes His deep love, a love too great for words to express, and a silent and pure love that is absorbed in its object. Then, “He rejoices over you with a shout of joy” (Hebrew) describes God’s love and joy not kept silent, but expressed with loud rejoicing and exultation.

In the first chapter, I mentioned the experience of my friend to whom Jesus showed the pile of garbage, comparing it to her own righteousness. On another occasion, Jesus met her, and as soon as He saw her He did a little dance out of the pure joy of His heart at the sight of one of His blood-washed beloved!

Because He has washed us in His own precious blood, and clothed us in the garments of His own righteousness, Jesus looks at us now and says:

Behold, thou art fair, my love; behold, thou art fair…Thou art all fair, my love; there is no spot in thee…my love, my dove, my undefiled…How fair and how pleasant art thou, O love, for delights! (Song of Sol. 4:1, 7; 5:2; 7:6)

Paul says in Ephesians 5:1 that we are God’s “dear children.” We are dear to Him and “precious” in His sight (Is. 43:4). Through the shed blood of Jesus we are no longer His enemies, but are now objects of God’s abundant grace and love.

Bearing shame and scoffing rude,
In my place condemned He stood;
Sealed my pardon with His blood,
Hallelujah! What a Saviour.

The Difference Between Judicial Wrath and Divine Chastisement

It is important to understand that while God has no judicial wrath toward those who have been redeemed (Rom. 8:1), yet this does not mean that He will not chastise His children for their sins. There is, however, a great difference between God’s judicial wrath (i.e., the legal punishment all sinners deserve) and His Fatherly chastisement of His children.

God chastens His children if they sin because He is a loving Father who naturally corrects wayward children with a remedial purpose in mind.

Thou shalt also consider in thine heart, that, as a man chasteneth his son, so the LORD thy God chasteneth thee. (Deut. 8:5)

For whom the Lord loveth He chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom He receiveth. (Heb. 12:6)

On the other hand, God punishes sinners for their sins because He is the righteous Judge of the universe who punishes wicked rebels simply because they deserve it.

…they that plow iniquity, and sow wickedness, reap the same. By the blast of God they perish, and by the breath of His nostrils are they consumed. (Job 4:8-9)

God, as Father to those in Christ, chastens His children because He loves them,

As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten… (Rev. 3:19)

whereas God, as holy Creator and moral Judge to those outside Christ, punishes sinners because He is angry with them, and hates their sin with an intense and furious hatred.

…God is angry with the wicked every day. (Ps. 7:11)

God is jealous, and the LORD revengeth; the LORD revengeth, and is furious; the LORD will take vengeance on His adversaries, and He reserveth wrath for His enemies. (Nah. 1:2)

God chastens His children to correct and reform them,

Before I was afflicted I went astray: but now have I kept thy word. (Ps. 119:67)

To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. (1 Cor. 5:5)

But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world. (1 Cor. 11:32)

whereas God punishes sinners because they deserve it and He has no reformatory purpose in mind.23

The LORD trieth the righteous: but the wicked and him that loveth violence His soul hateth. Upon the wicked He shall rain snares, fire and brimstone, and an horrible tempest: this shall be the portion of their cup. (Ps. 11:5-6)

And men were scorched with great heat, and blasphemed the name of God, which hath power over these plagues: and they repented not to give Him glory. (Rev. 16:9)

God’s chastisement of His children is a temporary correction,

Now no chastening for the present seemeth to be joyous, but grievous: nevertheless afterward it yieldeth the peaceable fruit of righteousness unto them which are exercised thereby. (Heb. 12:11)

and it can be avoided,

For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged [i.e., by God]. (1 Cor. 11:31)

whereas God’s wrath toward the wicked is an eternal judgment and abides permanently and unavoidably upon the lost.

…he that believeth not is condemned already…[and] shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him. (John 3:18, 36)

While God’s chastisement of His children can sometimes be very harsh, God, nevertheless, has no judicial wrath towards those who are in Christ.

There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus… (Rom. 8:1)

Free From the Punishment and the Power of Sin

Those who are in Christ, and are therefore free from all wrath and condemnation, will not see this as an opportunity to sin with impunity.

There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk [i.e., live] not after the flesh [i.e., according to the old way of life], but after the Spirit [i.e., in obedience to God]. (Rom. 8:1)

Those who are in Christ, simply because they are in Christ and He is in them, will walk in the Spirit.

When He saved you, God did not set you free from the punishment of your sin without, at the same time, setting you free from sin itself. When God forgave all your sins He also, at the same moment, changed you from your sinfulness and gave you a new heart, a new nature, a holy and righteous nature like His.

We know that whosever is born of God sinneth not… (1 John 5:18)

At the same time that you received a legal imputation of His righteousness in the “Courts of Heaven,” you were also born again in your heart upon the earth by His Spirit. And a righteous nature will produce a righteous life.

If ye know that He is righteous, ye know that every one that doeth righteousness is born of Him. (1 John 2:29)

Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect. (Matt. 5:48)

…every good tree bringeth forth good fruit… (Matt. 7:17)

…How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein? (Rom. 6:2)

And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. (Gal. 5:24)

God deals not only with the legal punishment of sin, but with the moral nature of the sinner himself. All who have been forgiven and set free from the punishment of their sins have also, by the regenerating work of the Holy Spirit, been changed in their own moral character and being, and restored to an experience of inward fellowship with a holy God, and a complete change of life will naturally follow.

Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creation: old things are passed away; behold, all things have become new. And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to Himself by Jesus Christ… (2 Cor. 5:17-18, Greek)

If one has truly repented and received the gift of God’s grace, then that gift included not only the legal remission of sins, but also the creation of a new heart within the man. If there is no outward evidence of this new heart and nature then there is also no assurance that his sins were ever remitted.

They profess that they know God; but in works they deny Him… (Tit. 1:16)

If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie… (1 John 1:6)

And hereby we do know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He that saith, I know Him, and keepeth not His commandments, is a liar… (1 John 2:3-4)

…every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. (Matt. 3:10)

The Endurance of the Saints

The promise of “no condemnation” is only to those who are in Christ. Therefore if you knowingly choose to forsake His love and fall away and step outside of Christ, then on the Last Day you will find yourself an object of God’s eternal hatred and judicial wrath.

…The hand of our God is upon all them for good that seek Him; but His power and His wrath is against all them that forsake Him. (Ezra 8:22)

Every branch in me that beareth not fruit He taketh away… (John 15:2)

…toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in His goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off. (Rom. 11:22)

For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. (2 Pet. 2:20)

God promises to keep you and to preserve you:

And this is the Father’s will…that of all which He hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day. (John 6:39)

My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand. (John 10:29)

while your responsibility is to persevere and endure:

But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved. (Matt. 24:13)

Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall. (1 Cor. 10:12)

…hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown. (Rev. 3:11)


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