I am working on a couple of other blog entries, plus the weekly newsletter, but this comes to mind now and I felt compelled to write it. I hear all the time, “Aww, Jesus died for me. He died for my sins. Just for me.” Actually, He didn’t.
Jesus died because God required a punishment for sin, and that punishment was a spotless sacrifice. Jesus obeyed God to become that sacrifice. He chose to become God incarnate and He chose to die. “No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again.” (John 10:18) and also John 6:37-40: “All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out. For I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will but the will of him who sent me. And this is the will of him who sent me, that I should lose nothing of all … “. In this way, Jesus died for GOD. We are beneficiaries of His obedience.
I don’t know why God has it set up that a blood sacrifice is required to satisfy a sin-debt. We get a glimpse in Genesis and Leviticus, “But you shall not eat flesh with its life – its blood”. (Gen 9:4) “For the life of the flesh is in the blood…for it is the blood that makes atonement for the soul” (Lev 17:11)
Jesus kind of did die for us. I was being provocative above 😉 If Adam and Eve had not fallen from grace then Jesus never would have had to incarnate to die on the cross, shedding His blood for OUR sin. But first and foremost Jesus died to satisfy His father, in the universe’s ultimate act of obedience and love. It is why Jesus deserves all the glory and all the praise.
I find it helpful to keep this perspective, because it keeps the spotlight off me, my sins, and my decision to accept the benefit of His work on the cross. I am sinner, yes. But it was His choice to do this for us that I praise and I am eternally grateful for. It keeps the spotlight on Him. Which is as it should be!