Faith in  Christ   leads to action

 

Jesus’ sacrifice fulfilled the significance of blood sacrifice, and his sacrifice enables us to truly live with purpose for God. “How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God!” (Heb. 9:14 NIV).

            Jesus’ life and sacrificial death fulfilled the law. The Son of God accomplished what no fallen human could. The Old Testament law proved that no one could keep the law completely. Jesus fulfilled the law and lived a sinless life. God is holy and will not tolerate sin as an intrusion into His holy presence. As our substitute, Jesus maintained the justice of God and satisfied the wrath of God for those who are saved. “For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Thess. 5:9 NIV).

            Here is an explanation about God’s wrath that can aid in our understanding. God’s wrath is not an uncontrollable, emotional (in human terms) reaction to human sin. Rather, God’s wrath is a purposeful action intended to direct people in a way that fulfills God’s purposes.[1] This explanation seems to be complimentary to the attributes and purposes of God. The Bible contains numerous affirmations of God’s love; for example, “His love endures forever” (Ps. 136:1-26 NIV) and “This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins” (1 John 4:10 NIV). I believe that God’s love, justice, and other attributes are to be understood as consistent with His purposes, as God has revealed them to us.A related point is that the Trinity is united in divine purposes, including saving humans into eternal life and fellowship with God. Jesus came to earth willingly to become fully human, even as He is fully God. All three Persons of the Trinity were involved in Jesus’ earthly ministry; e.g., at the baptism of Jesus: “and the Holy Spirit descended on him in bodily form like a dove.


[1] See Abraham J. Heschel, The Prophets (New York: HarperCollins Publishers, 2001), 358-382.

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Atonement page 5 of 7

2Co 5:18-19  And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.

The Atonement: Biblical Basis