Christ Died So We Might Live
Christ Died for You and Me
Salvation is entirely apart from any self-help. We are not saved by imitation of the crucifixion or by Christ’s example, but as Luther concluded, “that high crucifying whereby sin, the devil, and death, are crucified in Christ and not in me.”
The Bible says, “The soul that sins will surely die.” Christ died that we might live. He paid our debt to the righteousness of God. Two thousand years ago Christ paid a moral debt that belonged to you and me. His death secured our freedom from the debt and stamped the receipt “paid in full.” His death released us from all obligation to pay our spiritual debt.
The death of Christ is an historical fact at a time and place, but Christ crucified is also an eternal fact touching all time with equal nearness. The crucifixion of Christ is an ever-present reality in the mind and heart of God. Our reconciliation to God depends entirely upon that central fact of the ages.
By faith we lay our hands upon the head of the Lamb of God who was slain for our sins. In the sacrificial system of the Jewish tabernacle, the person offering the sacrifice laid his hands upon the head of the offering and declared by identification his sins upon that offering. The confessing Christian by faith lays his hand upon the head of God’s perfect sacrifice on his behalf. There is a solemn unity in the suffering of Christ and the believer. Christ made full atonement for the believing sinner. His death for the believer is intensely personal.
There is such an identification that the apostle Paul can say in Romans 6:6, “knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, that our body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin.”
Not only did Christ die that we might live, but in a very real sense He died that we might die. “In one death for all, then all die.”
This is all true of us and we accept it by faith. Christ died for us. He bore our sins and paid our penalty. Because of our identity with Him through faith, we have been “crucified with Christ.”
Beyond the earthly intellect, one’s soul says let me hear that Christ died in the stead of sinners, of whom I am chief; that He was forsaken of God, during these fearful agonies, because He had taken my place. On His cross He paid the penalty of my guilt. Let me hear the message that His blood cleanses from all sin, and that I may now appear before the bar of God, not only pardoned, but declared acquitted. I was in effect crucified on Calvary, and He will in effect stand before the throne in my person.
Because of my vital union with Christ, I can declare: His the penalty, mine the salvation; His the shame, mine the glory; His the thorns, mine the crown; His the merit, mine the reward.
Inspirational Notes for this article came from: http://www.abideinchrist.com/selah/index.html