Monday, February 4, 2019

Look What He Has Done

We cannot begin to fully understand what Jesus had experienced from the cross to the sitting down at the right hand of the Majesty on high. We can however see what scripture records to give us some idea as to what He suffered as our Substitute. On that awful cross, He not only became sin with our sin, but He became sick with our sicknesses and He also became a curse, "Surely He has borne our griefs (sicknesses) and carried our sorrows (pains); Yet we esteemed Him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all…Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise Him; He has put Him to grief.” (He has made Him sick) (Isaiah 53:4-6, 10) "Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree).” (Galatians 3:13)

Is it any wonder that the Father turned His back from Him? Is it any wonder from the cross Jesus cried in agony, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" (Matthew 27:46; Psalm 22:1) He was our sin Substitute. He had taken humanities place in judgment. Sin was not reckoned to Him, it was not set to His account, He took on humanities fallen nature and became sin. If believers could only take this in, the fact that He was made sin, he was made sick and a curse and that we were identified with Him on the cross, then we could grasp the reality of His substitutionary work. This truth of His identifying with us and we identifying with Him has been a doctrine instead of a reality to most believers. In every sense, not only did the Father lay these things on Jesus, but He laid us on Him, "I was crucified with Christ.” (Galatians 2:20) If we would only let these things be implanted in our heart, it will be the end of the dominion of sins and sicknesses among believers.

The Holy Spirit through the Apostle Paul tells us, "For sin (Satan) shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under law but under grace.” (Romans 6:14 ) The fact that Jesus was made sin with our sin and sick with our sickness in our place as our Substitute means, Satan has no legal right to put sin or sickness on any believer, and in the Name of Jesus we can stay free from Satan's power. True, we have mortal bodies, but our mortal body is filled with the life of God, "Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?" (1 Corinthians 3:16) The Holy Spirit lives inside of each and every believer!

The Apostle Paul also tells us, "even when we were dead in trespasses, He made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved)." (Ephesians 2:5)  "Buried with Him in baptism, in which you also were raised with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead. And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses." (Colossians 2:12-13) This is the heart of redemption. These are some of the wonderful works that our glorious Substitute, Jesus has done for us.  (Please take some time and read Psalm 22 and Psalm 88. In these two Psalms we get a picture of Christ's suffering on the cross and in hell.)

While in hell we see the remarkable work of God in Christ, "who was delivered up because of our offenses, and was raised up because of our being declared righteous." (Romans 4:25 Literal Translation) "We having been declared righteous, then, by faith, we have peace toward God through our Lord Jesus Christ." (Romans 5:1 Literal Translation) "For Jesus who did not know sin, in our behalf, God did make sin, that we may become the righteousness of God in him. (2 Corinthians 5:21 Literal Translation) "God was manifested in the flesh, justified (declared righteous) in the Spirit…" (1 Timothy 3:16) "For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit." (1 Peter 3:18) "And then having drawn the sting of all the powers ranged against us, He (Jesus) exposed them, shattered, empty and defeated, in his final glorious triumphant act!" (Colossians 2:15 Philips) "I am He who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore. Amen. And I have the keys of Hades and of Death." (Revelation 1:18)

Notice, in the depths of hell Jesus was justified, made alive in His spirit by the Holy Spirit and in the mind of the Father, we were made alive with Him. The moment that He was made alive, the Father justified Him, declared Him righteous. He was declared righteous because He had satisfied the claims of Justice. He had met every demand that the Supreme Court of the Universe held against humanity. He was made righteous with the life of God as we are made righteous in the New Creation.
"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new." (2 Corinthians 5:17 ) He also shattered, emptied and defeated the powers and forces of Satan as well as taking away from Satan his trophies of hell and death.

Jesus was made so righteous He left the depths of hell and could enter the Fathers presence without a trace of the sin or the sicknesses that were placed upon Him. He was made so righteous, that He could enter into the presence of the Father without a sense of sin, guilt, unworthiness or inferiority. He was made so righteous it was as though sin, sickness and becoming a curse had never been placed on Him. Finally, we see, "God has fulfilled this for us their children, in that He has raised up Jesus. As it is also written in the second Psalm: You are My Son, today I have begotten You." (Acts 13:33 ) This verse is not referring to the incarnation, but Christs’ resurrection and man’s liberation in Christ through His resurrection. The Apostle Paul tells us, "And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence." (Colossians 1:18) Jesus is the first firstborn from the dead, or put another way, the first one born again.

Now, grace through faith opens the doors to a freedom that only believers can experience in Christ. So, when we have good times or difficult times, let us never forget what our wonderful Lord and Savior has accomplished and given to us, abundant and eternal life!!!

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