Todays GOSPEL Word – “substitution”
“For Christ also suffered for sins once for all,the righteous for the unrighteous, that He might bring you to God, after being put to death in the fleshly realmbut made alive in the spiritual realm” 1st Peter 3:18
The Word “substitution” is a good word, a GOSPEL Word, for those who follow Christ and an evangelistic term, full of hope and promise for those who do not yet know Him as Savior. This term is used through out the Old and New Testaments and today we’ll dig into its meaning as it relates to the Gospel.
As it relates to our sin…the term substitution is scriptural employed in two specific ways…
1. Temporary Substitution – In Old Testament times, prior to Christ death on Calvary, the sheep died for the shepard
“Then Abraham reached out and took the knife to slaughter his son. But the Angel of the Lord called to him from heaven and said, “Abraham, Abraham!” He replied, “Here I am.” Then He said, “Do not lay a hand on the boy or do anything to him. For now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your only son from Me.” Abraham looked up and saw a ram caught in the thicket by its horns. So Abraham went and took the ram and offered it as a burnt offering in place of his son” Genesis 22:10-13
“Tell the whole community of Israel that on the tenth day of this month they must each select an animal of the flock according to their fathers’ households, one animal per household. If the household is too small for a whole animal, that person and the neighbor nearest his house are to select one based on the combined number of people; you should apportion the animal according to what each person will eat. You must have an unblemished animal, a year-old male; you may take it from either the sheep or the goats. You are to keep it until the fourteenth day of this month; then the whole assembly of the community of Israel will slaughter the animals at twilight. They must take some of the blood and put it on the two doorposts and the lintel of the houses where they eat them” Exodus 12:3-7
The Grand And Glaring Problem – this form of substitution isn’t the ultimate remedy for our sinful state. It is only temporary.
The author of Hebrews (10:4) points out the dilemma – “For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins”
Gods Ultimate Plan In Dealing With Our Sin- The GOSPEL…the eternal remedy, the Balm in Gilead (Jer 8:21-22).
2. Permanent Substitution – At and After The Cross, the Shepard Died For The Sheep
“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep” John 10:11
Thats the GOOD NEWS of Substitutionary Atonement – On the cross Christ became what He was not (sin) so that we would become what we’re not (righteous)
What Good News! What Gospel!
When it comes to what the word “substitution” means as it relates to the Gospel, I think we could sum it up this way…….
“The Son of God became the Son of man so that the sons of men could become the sons of God!”
“He made the One who did not know sin to be sin for us, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” 2nd Corinthians 5:21
Spend some time meditating upon the substitutionary death of Christ. He died in your place. He took upon Himself the wrath of God the Father that you and I deserved. Hallelujah!
Soli Deo Gloria! – Pastor Kyle