Good Friday. The stage was set. The crowd had won. Pilate had caved in to peer-pressure. The Sanhedrin had come up with false evidence. Judas had betrayed his leader for 30 pieces of silver. The hill was climbed and it was time.
Time for the execution of Jesus Christ.
Time for man to put to death the Son of God.
Time for one who knew no sin to die for the sake of a fallen people.
Time for God’s love to be put on display for all to see.
“For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. Yet God, with undeserved kindness, declares that we are righteous. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins. For God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin. People are made right with God when they believe that Jesus sacrificed his life, shedding his blood. This sacrifice shows that God was being fair when he held back and did not punish those who sinned in times past, for he was looking ahead and including them in what he would do in this present time. God did this to demonstrate his righteousness, for he himself is fair and just, and he declares sinners to be right in his sight when they believe in Jesus.
Can we boast, then, that we have done anything to be accepted by God? No, because our acquittal is not based on obeying the law. It is based on faith. So we are made right with God through faith and not by obeying the law.” Romans 3:23-28
All of us have sinned. It was our sin that Jesus bore on the cross. He was sacrificed in our place. He took the punishment we deserve. He bore the wounds that should have been ours. It was our sin that wore Him down. “He was wounded and crushed for our sins. He was beaten that we might have peace. He was whipped, and we were healed! All of us have strayed away like sheep. We have left God’s paths to follow our own. Yet the Lord laid on him the guilt and sins of us all.” (Isaiah 53:5-6).
That fateful day, as sorrow and love flowed mingled down on the cross and thrones composed a rich crown, the greatest exchange took place. Jesus was presented as the one complete and all sufficient sacrifice for sin. He died that we might have life. Through His blood we are healed. Through His blood we are cleansed. No matter what we have done, no matter what our past, no matter what baggage we carry, no matter who we have hurt, no matter what laws we have broken, on the cross the price was paid, completely. Jesus took the punishment. The power of sin was broken. The wrath of God was satisfied.
Jesus took our guilt, He gave us His glory.
Jesus bore our sin so we may wear a crown of righteousness.
He became broken so we could be whole.
He was pierced so we could be healed.
He died that we might have life.
He came down from heaven so that we may all ascend to heaven.
Jesus paid the price so that we could receive the free gift of eternal life.
He took on our sin, we get his righteousness – what a great exchange!