Love and Sin – by Des Ford
May 13, 2015 1806
Have you ever thought of this question: Did God get rid of our sins by showing us his love or did God show us his love by getting rid of our sins?
At first sight you might think there is little difference. However, there’s a world of difference! There’s an abyss of difference; there’s a universe of difference between those two statements. Which is true? One is Biblical; the other is heretical. God got rid of our sins by showing us his love – that sounds good. God showed us his love by getting rid of our sins – that sounds Biblical. The fact is that the first statement is a half truth, not the whole truth, and a half truth is very usually a whole heresy. But that doesn’t mean that it isn’t very popular!
Peter Abelard, the medieval French theologian stressed the first view that there was really no such thing as an eternal righteousness that had to be considered; the only real problem was that men did no.t know God.
Now, it’s true that men don’t know God. While that is true, the Bible says that the wages of sin is death because sin is not just ignorance, sin is rebellion.
I want you to think for a moment on what gives the clue to the right answer. The death of Christ is given a disproportionate treatment that is nowhere else found in the whole Bible.. The death of Paul is not even mentioned. The death of James, the brother of the Lord, is told in one sentence. We are not told about the death of Moses, at least not in any detail.
Have you ever wondered why it was that when God sent his Son he didn’t make the most of it while he was here? Why did he not cross over to Rome, go to Athens? Babylon was still in existence in that day, he could have gone there. Why didn’t he go down to Egypt? Why not use his divine powers to visit the Aborigines in Australia and the red Indians in America? Why should he be confined to a little place smaller than Tasmania?
And, furthermore, if he was to be our example, why don’t we see him in mature age? In old age? Why did he not live at least as long as Methuselah? Surely there is more reason for Jesus to live as long as Methuselah than for Methuselah to live the years of Methuselah?
Think of all he could have taught us! Why should he suddenly be removed from the earth, like crown jewels taken away, like the first fruits reaped, like the dew taken off the grass, like the sun extinguished at noon? Why should he suddenly be taken? And if he is gone, what are we doing here? Why is it that a third to a quarter of the Gospels focus on his death?
I’ll tell you why. It was for the same reason that his death was a bloody death. There are many ways to die, you can fall down stairs and kill yourself, you can take poison and look quite normal and die. There are many, many ways to die. But he dies with blood from his brow, from his hands, feet, and his side. The blood is oozing from his back where he has been flogged.
Why a bloody death? Because the wages of sin is death, and without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sins, for the blood is the life.
From that event on Calvary the whole world was acquitted, redeemed, justified, freed, and liberated – because God himself took the guilt of humanity upon him and had honoured the boken law by all the agony, pain, and anguish that sin brings. In this way God can be both just and our justifier.
– Des Ford. Rom 8:27–32. Adapted from “What Do We Mean By The Atonement?”