The transfer of sins started when the first rough hand was placed on the Son of God by those arresting him in the garden of Gethsemane. At first, the sins placed upon Jesus arrived slowly, but each time the Son of God was punched in the face, every time spit landed on the holy face of the creator of the universe, each time the lash opened up another cut on the body of the man who only preached love and kindness, every time a hand full of beard was torn from the face of the man who was so humble that he washed the feet of his disciples, then sins by the trillions rained down upon the Lord.
His love for each of us was indeed great because when the Son of God
left heaven he gave up all his glory and all his power. No longer did
he sit at the right hand of Almighty God. Instead of having the glory
and honor of being the Son of God, he had voluntarily reduced himself
to a mere mortal. Stepping out of paradise he left all that and instead
took the earthly form of Jesus Christ. It is truly incredible but the
Son of God allowed himself to be born into a world that he himself had
created. That is why the term "the only begotten son of God" is used.
Begotten simply means born of flesh.
Luke 1:35 "And the angel answered and said to her, The Holy Spirit shall come upon you, and the power of the Most High shall overshadow you; wherefore also the Holy One which is begotten shall be called the Son of God.
It's incredible but God is telling us that he loved us so much that he
became one of us. And he did all this just for the privilege of
welcoming you and I into heaven.
1 John 4:10 "That God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, so that we might live through Him."
What was his purpose for coming here to earth?
Jesus was an ambassador, a divine emissary from Almighty God himself. He had many objectives on his mission to earth, but the main purpose was twofold. First he was to tell the entire world about God the Father, and the second purpose is spelled out so very clearly in 1 Timothy 1:15 "Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners".
But in accomplishing this second goal, Jesus was going to suffer and die. But before he died, he was going to have every single one of your sins and every single one of my sins placed upon his soul. With those sins in place, he then allowed himself to be horribly tortured and murdered.
Giving up his existence as The Son of God, stepping out of heaven,
taking the human form of Jesus Christ, and going through a horrible and
painful death, was his main goal for coming here. For had God in the
form of Jesus not paid your sin debt and my sin debt, then nothing else
that Jesus did would have mattered very much because none of us would
have ever had the chance of achieving eternal life and be able to spend
eternity with him and his Father.
2 Corinthians 5:21 "For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God".
Truly, it was Christ's obedience that canceled out Adam's disobedience.
Having our sins placed upon Jesus didn't make him sinful. He was still
God and therefore was completely sinless. At the time of his
crucifixion Jesus simply "carried" our sins; a sort of temporary stand
in for our sins. There was a transfer of sins; from all of us, to him. This is why the wording of
2 Corinthians 5:21 is so very important. That verse says, "For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." Christ was sinless, but willingly accepted every single sin, from every single person, that was or would ever be committed.
This transfer of sins was unseen by everyone but God because as he watched his Son hanging there dying, he could also see all those many sins piling up on his Son. It makes no difference that you would not be born for another 2,000 years. The sins of every human being that ever lived, or was going to live, had their sins all transferred over to Jesus. Not one single sin, regardless of how small, was left unaccounted for.
Why did it take his blood?
Had Christ expired via suffocation or heart attack, his death would have been in vain as far as salvation is concerned. It had to be death by the shedding of blood, for it is the blood that makes an atonement for the soul (Leviticus 17:11). That's why the Church was purchased with his own blood (Acts 20:28), why we are able to have redemption and the forgiveness of sins through his blood (Ephesians 1:7), and why the blood of Jesus Christ cleanses us from all sin (1 John 1:7). Small wonder that 1 Peter 1:19 calls Christ's blood precious...as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.
The born again believer will sin again, in fact he will more than likely sin many times in the future, but he will not persist in an ungodly and sinful lifestyle. So what about those times when he does sin? All he has to do is confess that sin to God, repent by making an honest and sincere effort not to commit that sin again, and the blood of Christ washes away that sin.
When did the sins of man become transferred over to Jesus?
The transfer of sins started when the first rough hand was placed on the Son of God by those arresting him in the garden of Gethsemane. At first the sins placed upon Jesus arrived slowly but each time the Son of God was punched in the face, every time spit landed on the holy face of the creator of the universe, each time the lash opened up another cut on the body of the man who only preached love and kindness, every time a hand full of beard was torn from the face of the man who was so humble that he washed the feet of his disciples, then sins by the trillions rained down upon the Lord. Each curse, every mock, every kick brought with it unimaginable quantities of sins that landed squarely on the torn, bleeding, and broken body of Jesus Christ.
Why a sacrifice like this?
Almighty God will not be in the presence of sin. He hates sin and won't be around sin, nor will he allow even a single evil sin to be in heaven. So of course he is not going to let anyone into heaven who is dragging sin along with them. So God had a problem and the problem was this: How are you and I going to get into heaven and be with the Father, since we spend a great deal of our lives committing sins against God?
Romans 3:23 "For all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God".
Therefore, with all of our sins there is just no way that any of us can ever make it to heaven and be with the Heavenly Father. And then came the divine plan. God came up with a plan to save as many humans as possible and to get them into heaven, so they will be with the Heavenly Father for all eternity in unimaginable joy and happiness.
The plan was really quite simple. Suppose the wife of the family goes to the dry cleaners to pick up one of her dresses that she's had dry cleaned. The bill is $4.00. But when the wife tries to pay the bill, the wife finds that she has forgotten her wallet and there is no money in her purse. The clerk tells her to take the laundry and she can pay for it later. She tells the clerk that yes she will take the dress now and that she will call her husband and ask him to drop off the money on the way home from work. And that is exactly what she does. Now the wife has a debt. She acquired a $4.00 debt the very moment that she took possession of the dress and walked out the dry cleaners door. Later the husband drops by the cleaners on the way home and pays the $4.00 debt.
Do you see what just happened? The husband just took care of another persons debt. He made the sacrifice of stopping by the cleaners to pay a bill that was not his. He used his own money to pay a bill his wife owed. And in paying off this $4.00 bill he has relieved his wife of all the responsibility for that debt. The husband didn't pay his debt, he paid another's debt. The very second that the husband paid the $4.00, the wife's debt was washed clean. It has vanished. There is no more debt. And that is why Christ had to come here and die. Jesus was a substitutionary sacrifice that cancelled out our sin debt to God the Father.
Why this particular plan?
A sinless God declared in the Garden of Eden that the penalty for sin is death. The Word of God is full of verses like Romans 6:23 "When someone sins, he earns what sin pays--death."
So when someone sins, then they have to die. It is as simple as that. When you sin you are sentencing yourself to death. The problem is that God the Father does not want you to die. He considers you his child and he loves you and he wants you with him. He wants to make you happy beyond your wildest dreams. 1 Corinthians 2:9, "The eye has not seen and the ear has not heard, nor has there even been conceived in the mind of man the things that God has prepared for those that love him."
So what does God do? And into this plan steps his Son, who is willing to take responsibility for all of your sins. He is telling his Father that he will be responsible for all of your sins. Instead of you dying for your sins, The Son of God is going to die in your place. You will no longer be responsible for your own sin debt.
The following two statements describes how the plan works in principle.
God the Father had declared, "that the soul that sinned, will die", and that "the penalty for sin was death". So Godly justice states that each of us must pay the penalty for our sins. But then we see the incredible mercy of God when the Son of God agrees to take upon himself every one of our sins, and become the substitutionary sacrifice for every single sin that mankind would ever commit. It was He that paid off each of our sin debts. It was he that paid the penalty for all sins. It was he that died in your place. He chose to accept your sins and die for them in your place, and the only way that he could die was to leave heaven and take up the form of a human being. Jesus became the sin bearer for all of our sins, and it was at the cross where justice and mercy met.
So the only way for anyone to pay their own sin debt would be to die without accepting Jesus Christ. And if you did that, then you would die in your own sins and for your own sins. You yourself would pay the penalty for your sins. And your penalty would be death - eternal death.
When all those sins were hoisted onto the soul of Jesus Christ, it relieved you and me and every other person who ever lived of the eternal punishment of those sins. Because as Jesus hung there dying, the punishment for all those sins on his back was also dying. And at that very instant, God the Father was accepting Jesus's sacrifice as full and complete payment for all your sins. You were relieved of that debt. Washed cleaned. We are all going to sin again in the future, but all that is required to wash away any future sins is simply asking for forgiveness. Then they to vanish. That is the power that the shed blood of Jesus Christ has. That is why John could write at 1 John 1:7, "And the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin".
Besides the fact that there is no mention of purgatory in the Bible, or anything like it, to believe in a purgatory or some other type of temporary punishment after this earthly life, is to believe that the shed blood of Jesus Christ was not sufficient to cleanse every one of us of our sins. To believe in a purgatory would be to believe that God the Father made a terrible and horrible mistake, and had put his very own Son through needless and unnecessary pain and suffering because the spilled innocent blood of Jesus Christ was not adequate. That his blood was not enough. To believe in a purgatory is to believe that a great many verses in the Holy Bible are wrong. Verses like the following. Hebrews 10:12 "But when Christ had offered for all time a single sacrifice for all sins, he sat down at the right hand of God."
Thank God that believers who read and study the Word of God do not have to waste a single second worrying about some man made doctrine that says that the souls of believers after death have to spend some time in a fiery purgatory.
Moreover, no human being, including a Roman Catholic priest, has the
power or the right to absolve or forgive any one of sin. No one stands
in the position of God with the power of salvation or damnation in his
or her hands. Confession of sin can only be made to God in prayer, and
it is completely wrong to believe that one has to go through a "human
mediator" in order to receive forgiveness and salvation from God.
1 John 1:9 "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."
And we know that God the Father was indeed successful in his plan for
man's eternal salvation because of the very last words that Jesus spoke
as a human being. These words were written by one of the apostles, one
who was standing right at the foot of the cross. And these words can be
found at John 19:30, "It is finished," and bowing his head he delivered up his spirit.
Those words were not uttered by someone who was unsuccessful and defeated. Those words were spoken by someone that was victorious.
1 Peter 2:24 He himself bore our sins in his body on the cross, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.
Like the wife above, our debt was paid in full and God the Father was declaring us not guilty. Like the wife above we no longer had any kind of debt. We were clean and spotless. The debt for our sin was paid by the debt paying sacrifice of the sinless Son of God.
This tremendous and incomprehensible act of love swept away every
single obstacle that laid in our path leading to the gates of heaven
and to the waiting arms of our Heavenly Father.
Romans 3:25 "Whom God put forward as a sacrifice by his blood, effective through faith. He did this to show his righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over the sins previously committed".
The horrible unseen pain involved in his crucifixion
Think for a second of that time in your life when you were blamed for something that you didn't do. Remember how bad you felt? Or think of the horrible guilt that you felt when you committed a really despicable sin. Not a very pleasant thought is it? Now think of the most horrible crime that you have ever heard about in your entire life. Remember how difficult it was to even think that someone could do that to another human being, and how your heart ached for the victim and the victims family? Now think about all the horrible crimes committed against people over the last year in just your city? Pretty depressing isn't it?
Well for Jesus the physical pain of the crucifixion was bad enough, but just imagine this sinless God, who knew no sin, but who had every single sin that was ever committed or that will ever be committed, placed squarely upon his back, and then try to imagine how horrible and how terrible he must have felt. Think of the internal pain that the knowledge and awareness that each of those sins brought him. Jesus was experiencing the pain and grief of each and every murder committed all through human history. Every child that was ever sexually abused, every wife beaten by her spouse, every period of drunkenness, every abortion, every robbery, every lie told and all of the hurt, pain, and sorrow inflicted on the many friends and family members from each of those sins. They were all being experienced by this sinless Son of God as he hung in terrible pain on that cross, because it was Jesus that was paying the penalty for each of those sins.
Think of the grief, the anguish, the sorrow, the guilt, the horrible regret, the unimaginable horror that he was experiencing from each and every one of those sins that were pressing down on his body, his spirit, his very soul. Every hurt, every evil deed, every sinful thought that went along with each of those sins. Imagine the pain that he had to experience from all the horrible and dreadful consequences and hurtful effects that each of these sins brought him because now it was he that was paying the price for each and every one of those sins. Think of the shattered lives, the hopelessness, the despair and disappointment, the dread and guilt that each of those sins brought upon him. The horrendous effects from each one of those sins. The Son of God was experiencing all the pain and all the suffering that was caused by each and every sin through out all of human history, and he was living through all the pain from the repercussions and horrible consequences that each and every one of those sins caused. It was all on the soul of this sinless man.
Then think of the incredible pain that Jesus was experiencing from the tremendous wrath directed straight to him from God the Father. God hates sin, hates sin more than anything else, and Jesus knew this and he felt it. And unfortunately for Jesus, this terrible wrath coming from his Father was much more painful than the physical act of the crucifixion itself.
The sins of the entire world that Jesus was now carrying was also bringing a horrible separation between the Father and the Son. And this is because just as sin separates you from God, so too, as Jesus hung there on the cross with every sin of all time piled upon his soul, there was a complete alienation from his Father. A disunion or divorcement between the Father and the Son. And this is because God just cannot be in the presence of sin, and just as sin separates you from God, it also separated Jesus from his Father. But in Jesus's case, this was the very first time in all of eternity that the Son was separated from his Father. The emotional pain that Jesus had to experience from this separation had to be unmeasurable. The pain that Jesus felt from that separation had to be tearing his heart apart. Jesus must love us very, very much to have put himself through all of that, just for you and I.
Other reasons why Jesus suffered so very much
Besides knowing that he was going to be separated from the Father because of the sins that he was soon going to be carrying, there were other things that were happening to Jesus that was causing him great pain, heartache and emotional distress. For instance,
1) The entire Jewish Nation that he came to save had turned its back on him.
2) One of his very own, at that exact instant, was in the process of betraying him.
3) His greatest supporter was soon going to deny him over and over and over.
4) This is the one and only time that he really needed his friends support and comfort, and suddenly Jesus found himself to be utterly and completely alone. There was not a single person on this entire planet who stood by his side. Not a single person who spoke up for him. Not one person gave comfort or spoke words of encouragement. Not a single human being came to his aid.
5) This God of love, who came to earth only to help and save mankind, knew that those plotting to kill him had put a value of a mere 30 pieces of silver on his very existence.
6) He knew that all his friends would very soon be running away from him as fast as they could.
7) And he knew that soon he was going to go through a great deal of extremely horrible pain and suffering.
The Horrible Scourging
Just before Jesus was crucified, Pilot caused Jesus to be beaten horribly by a Roman "scourging team" usually administered to a condemned man. This brutal whipping was usually done with a leather whip, into which were fastened embedded shards of glass or metal, designed to tear the skin and induce incredible bleeding and excruciating pain. Many men died just from this beating alone. That is why Isaiah said: "By his stripes we are healed."(Isaiah 53:5)
The "Lords Supper" or "Passover" describes the importance of faith and humility as one takes the emblems of bread and wine. The broken bread symbolizes Christ's body, "broken"for our physical healing. The wine symbolizes His shed blood given in payment for our spiritual sins.
Two people on the same cross
It's interesting to note that there were two different people on the cross that Jesus was on. There was the human Jesus who cried out, "I thirst", and who asked John the Apostle to take care of his mother Mary.
Yet at the same time it was Jesus, the Son of God, who was also hanging there, for it was this Jesus that told the good thief that he would be with him in paradise that very day, and it was this Jesus who asked His Father to forgive those who were in the process of murdering him.
Could you have done what he did
Consider what God did. He gave up his Son to die a horrible death. His only Son. Would you do that? Would you offer the life of your child for someone else? I wouldn't. There are those for whom I would give my life for. But ask me to make a list of those for whom I would kill my daughter or my son for? The list would be empty. I wouldn't need a pencil. The list would never, ever have any names on it.
But God had a list, and your name
was on it. In fact God's list contained the names of every person who
ever lived. For this is the scope of his love. And this is the reason
for the cross. Because he loves every single human being. Loves them so
much that he did something that he didn't have to do. He allowed his
only son to be murdered. This one single act shows that God has this
incredible unconditional love for each and every one of us.
Romans 5:8 "But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us."
As Jesus was hanging on that cross in terrible pain and taking his very last breath, his Father was looking down on his Son and he was telling his son that all human sins are now forgiven. All sins, past, present, and future. That because of his sacrifice The Father was declaring every human being not guilty of sin. And as mentioned above, the Son of God actually replied to his Father. Jesus spoke the three words that are probably the most important three words ever spoken in all of human history. That's what Jesus meant by the very last words that he spoke. And these words were recorded by the apostle John who was standing at the very foot of the cross that Jesus was hanging on. And again those 3 words that Jesus uttered as he took his very last breath. John 19:30, "It is finished", and bowing his head he delivered up his spirit. God's plan for man's eternal salvation was over, and it was a complete success. The plan was successful and Jesus was victorious.
Romans 5:10 "We became reconciled to God through the death of his son".
That broken, torn, bloodied, and very dead body hanging there on the cross was considered complete and full payment from the Son of God, to God the Father, for each and every sin that was, or will ever be committed on earth. The eternal punishment for every single sin that you and I will ever commit, died at the exact same moment when Jesus died.
Why did they do it?
They did it for only one reason. Love. Love is why they made us in the beginning, why they bless us, why they keep us breathing, why they watch over us so much, why they are always there to pick us up when we fall, why they give us guidance and strength, and why they want us with them. We are their children. Our Lord's great sacrifice of giving up his life for us is not hard to understand if you consider the following. Would you as a loving father not gladly give your life in the attempt to rescue your beautiful little boy if he wandered onto a busy street full of speeding traffic? Would not you as a loving mother gladly sacrifice your life in an attempt to prevent a strange man from pulling your precious little girl into a car? And that's the same reason why they did what they did. They simply love us and they want us with them.
With unmeasurable love God looks upon each one of us as a child of his. All through the Bible God tells us this.
Galatians 3:26 "For you are all sons of God, through faith in Jesus Christ".
John 1:12 "But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name".
1 John 3:1 "Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God".
2 Corinthians 8:9 "You know how full of love and kindness our Lord Jesus is. And though he is so very rich, yet to help you, he became so very poor, so that by being poor, he could make you rich."
You may be thinking that now after all this has happened that you are home free. That regardless of what you do and how great you sin, the only place that you are going to wind up in is heaven.
The sacrifice that God the Father made to us all by sending his beloved Son down to earth to be treated the way he was, was indeed a great gift. A gift that only a very loving father could even begin to understand. Likewise, can you imagine what a great gift the Lord gave us by taking on all of our sins and going through all that he did. Only someone who has given his own precious life for another could possibly even come close to understanding the importance of his great gift. For truly, what God the Father and God the Son did, were gifts.
Romans 6:23 "For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord".
Ephesians 1:6 "Let us praise God for his glorious grace, for the free gift he gave us in his dear Son"!
Now suppose it is your birthday and you hear a knock at your door. You open the door and there I stand with a huge beautifully wrapped birthday gift. I tell you happy birthday and that I went out and bought you the best birthday gift in the entire world. I tell you that you are just going to love this gift. So you look at me, then you look at the gift, and then you look back at me, and you say "I don't want it", and you slam the front door shut.
What many people would do would be to keep the gift for a while and hope that you come to your senses, maybe hope that you apologize and ask for forgiveness and then ask for the gift. Well God is also keeping his gift for you. In fact he is going to keep your gift at the ready until right after you have taken your very last breath. You see he's hoping that someday you too will come to your senses and ask for the gift that he has for you. Because the very last thing that Our Heavenly Father wants is for you to take that last breath and have a verse like Jeremiah 8:20 become extremely prominent to your eternal existence. "Harvest is past, summer is ended, And I have not been saved."
The death of Jesus is your gift from God. It's there waiting for you. It's been bought and completely paid for. It is even wrapped and is covered with many bows. Bows of inner peace, tranquility, understanding, love, eternal life, and so many more. In fact your gift is right in front of you, in those outstretched hands of Jesus Christ.
But you have to reach out your hand and take that wonderful gift of
salvation from The Son of God. You have to make the effort. With your
own free will you have to make the decision on whether you want to
accept that gift. That is the meaning behind verses like,
Hebrews 10:12 "But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God.
The work and labors of Jesus were now over. Now it was up to each and every one of us.
Receiving the gift
So what do you do to get this gift? That's rather easy.
Your gift of salvation is all based upon Jesus Christ. He is the key for you getting this gift.
In order for you to obtain this gift and to acquire salvation and entrance into heaven, you must in your own heart truly believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, that he came to earth to die on the cross at calvary, that the blood that he shed on the cross allowed you to have your sins forgiven, and through his glorious Resurrection he made it possible for you to overcome death and obtain eternal life. You must really try to turn away from your sins and you must also ask God to forgive you of those sins. You must also put complete faith and trust into Jesus Christ and you must make every effort to obey him.
These are the things that you must do in order to obtain this gift of eternal salvation and they all happen to center around the Son of God. If you don't accept Jesus Christ as the one true path to salvation, then eternal life will never be yours.