Thursday, April 17, 2014

Was His sacrifice really a sacrifice?

I don't even remember what blog I was reading but somewhere recently I read a comment on a blog post where the reader in effect was asking a question on how was it that Jesus' sacrifice on the cross really did anything? How was it such a big deal when He was able to come back alive? How did that cost God anything? And now He is with His Father in heaven and still gets to rule and reign- so how is that really sacrificing anything? This person went on to say that no one not a pastor or anyone else has been able to explain it their satisfaction. I didn't really have the time or words to really answer at that moment. And I will have to admit in my past I have asked that myself- but it came from a place of wanting to grow in my faith. As I have pondered and prayed and searched scripture- here is how I would answer those questions.

John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. It is hard for us to imagine that God has always been. Always existed, always has been in perfect love and light and goodness. God has never been separated. And then in John 1:14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. For the first time EVER God became one of us. Lived among us, grew up among us, taught us, loved us, healed us, celebrated with us, cried with us, prayed for us. And all the while he stayed in contact with his loving Father (example John 17).
Then He submitted and willingly gave his life for us. He was a willing sacrifice. A righteous man willing to die for sinful man; a people who rejected Him. And as He died ALL of mankind's sin was put on Him--my sin was put on him. My shame, my lies, my theft, my gluttony, my gossip, my lust, my selfishness and much more-- all of it was put on Him. And because of my sin, God had to turn away. Jesus, for the first time ever was separated from His Father. Oh how it must have crushed Him (Mark 15:34).

But then on the first day of the week we have an empty tomb... I tell my little girl that Jesus had to come back alive to show that He really is God. We really can trust Him. He really can take away our sins. He really is making a place for us in heaven. He really will come back again for us. It really is that simple. If Jesus stayed dead for all eternity then wouldn't He be just another prophet? Just another good man?

I don't know all the answers. I am no scholar. The only "training" I have is a love for my Lord and some Bible studies under my belt. How He works it all out boggles my mind sometimes. But you see that is the really cool thing about my God. I don't get all the answers... I don't get to figure Him out. I just get some of the answers and then He helps me to trust Him with the rest. THAT is the kind of God I want. I don't want a god I can "figure out" or find all the answers to my questions. I want a God that is bigger than me. Bigger than my questions. Bigger than my sin and bigger than anything I will face here. He asks me to trust Him and then tells me that He will never leave me or forsake me.

One further thing came to my mind this week. Thank the Lord that He will be there! I don't want to be there without Him. If He was dead forever I wouldn't get to thank Him. I wouldn't get to dance or run or commune with Him. I wouldn't get to take His hand or look into His eyes. I wouldn't get to sing my song of praise to Him. He wouldn't get to wipe away my tears- for good. I don't want to miss Him. I love Him, I want to be with Him. But He is alive, He is Risen! There is an empty tomb! He really defeated death and sin and He did that for me and He did that for you.

John 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave is one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life.

Have a blessed Easter!

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