Isaiah 53:6 (NIV)
6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.
Corinthians 5:21 (NIV)
21 God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
The record is clear, we have rebelled against the Sovereign One of the Universe. We have each one decided not to obey God and go our own way. That way has led us to death and destruction. Because of our sin our world now under the curse of sin. Death and destruction are everywhere. There is no soundness in our flesh we find ourselves dead in our sins and transgressions. What hope is there for the likes of us?
If you were to look anywhere in the universe you would not find any reason for hope because the whole of the universe is under the curse due to our sin. There is no one who does good not even one. Our hope is not found in any man or creature in this universe. Our hope must come from outside this universe where the consequences of our sin have not polluted. We have need of someone who is perfect in holiness and sinless in their obedience to God’s holy law.
Is our hope to be found among the angels who minister before the throne of God day and night? It is not found there because we read of many angels who sinned and chose to rebel against God . Even those who possessed such beauty as the angels do not possess such a nature that can redeem us. It has to be someone who is higher than the angels.
And so it is. The Father and the Son and the Spirit were all in perfect agreement of what must happen to rescue those whom God the Father would choose to save. Then willingly and without a moment’s hesitation offered his perfect holy life as a way for all of God’s children to be redeemed. He alone possessed an infinite capacity to pay for the infinite wrath we had incurred by offering his life, the infinite God/man.
Consider this great transaction for a brief moment today. This infinitely holy God chose to become sin for us and then take on himself all the wrath and judgment that we justly deserved so we would never have to face the eternal wrath of God for our sin. Consider the text in detail. “We all like sheep have gone astray.” There is not one redeemed child of God who can ever stand and offer this testimony. “I have kept all the commandments since my youth.”
“Each has turned to his own way.” Some may have sinned in one way that is more apparent and noticeable but others have sinned in their hearts by holding sinful thoughts and entertaining sinful actions. There is no one who can stand on his own before God. We should have been condemned by the holy standard of God but just before the sentence was to be carried out on us all of our sin and acts of wickedness were somehow lifted from our lives and the sum total of all the sins of all the redeemed of all the ages were gathered into one place and then that seething mass of iniquity was placed in the body of our Lord Jesus.
When once our sin was placed on him now witness the unmitigated wrath of God against all sin now being hurled with full force upon the body of our Lord. The Son knew this was what he must do in order to rescue the redeemed. He did it willingly, but with great trepidation. Now watch him and hear him cry from the cross, “My God, my God why have you forsaken me?”
He knew he had to pay for the sins of the redeemed, but what he did not know in his humanity was just how long he must endure the wrath fo the Father. It was nine o’clock in the mornign and he cried “Father forgive them for they know not what they do.” So the payment began. The wrath wrath of God was now landing full weight on his body on the cross. The minutes ticked by at a dreadfully slow pace. Minutes seemed like hours or days. To be shut off from his Father from whom he had never experineced even the least bit of distance from in all eternity now seemed like every moment was an eternity.
When twelve o’clock came around the sense of pain and anguish was more than Jesus could bear. He knew he would have to endure the full weight of our punishment, he just did not know how long he would have to endure it. The time passesd so slowly he felt like it had been an eternity since nine o’clock. When Jesus cried out, “My God my God why have you abandoned me?” He had no way of knowing how much longer it would be. Would he be on this cross for hours or days or months or years? He had no way of knowing the exact cost but he willingly offered himself not knowing how long. Do you see it yet dear saint? Jesus knew the cost would be great but he had no way of knowing just how much it would cost in his human mind. He had given up all rights to his omniscience when he came to earth. His sacrifice was of such a nature that he did not know what the price would be, he only knew that he must pay it if we were to be redeemed.
What was the result of our Lord’s sacrifice for us? Paul writes about this way, “He made him to be sin who knew no sin that we might be made the righteousness of God.” Because of what Christ has done for us we are no longer considered sinners but righteous. We no longer need to fear the judgment of God only the embrace of God. We are longer abandoned but loved by God. No longer strangers but fellow citizens and members of God’s own hosuehold.
Talk about great transactiosn there is no better transaction in the universe.
Rejoicing in the Great Transaction,