Daily Devotion

Jesus: Author and Finisher of our Faith

In this is love, not that we have
loved God but that he loved us
and sent his Son to be the
propitiation for our sins.

-1 John 4:10

The real suffering that Christ endured was not at the hand of Pilate’s cat-of-nine-tails with the scorpion hook he brutally inflicted upon our Lord’s body. No. But the greatest affliction occurred when on the cross our Lord became our divine substitute for us (2 Cor. 5:21) and took our sin, the penalty and guilt of our sin, and all of the Father’s wrath that burns against us and our sin that we deserved. He took it for us! As Isaiah 53 says, “It pleased God to crush Him for our iniquities.”

O what majesty in the midst of such suffering; what glory in the midst of such agony; and what grace, love and mercy in the midst of such sinful man’s rebellion. Hallelujah to the King of Righteousness our blessed day of our salvation.

Remember this beloved: our Lord Jesus Christ cried out from Calvary’s tree these eternal words of finality: “IT IS FINISHED!” In every way that sinful man needed to be represented before a holy God to be given a “better righteousness than the Scribes and Pharisees” Christ fully accomplished. Nothing was left unfinished. We are “complete in Him” by grace through faith alone.

So to what extent have all of our sins been dealt with on the cross–even those we have not even committed or have had committed against us yet? When the Lord Jesus Christ declared from the cross,”It is finished!”, He had:

• fulfilled the Law;
• went beyond the veil;
• satisfied God’s justice;
• propitiated the Father’s wrath;
• satisfied His holiness;
• fulfilled all righteousness;
• exalted grace;
• confirmed the gospel;
• redeemed the elect;
• justified His own from the penalty of sin;
• quenched the guilt of our sin;
• crushed the head of Satan and destroyed his hold of death;
• abolished death and its sting;
• fulfilled all redemptive Messianic prophecies;
• secured for us eternal life;
• brought us into intimacy with God;
• imputed to us His perfect righteousness;
• instituted a new covenant;
• and brought us into peace with God forever!

Now THAT is a cross we can glory in!

The death of Christ was both a propitiation AND an expiation of sin. Propitiation refers to the turning away of wrath by an offering. God’s wrath was satisfied and His justice meted out by Jesus’ once for all sacrifice on the cross. Expiation refers to covering sins and in specific, the guilt of sin. By the vicarious penal substitutionary atonement of Christ Jesus on the cross, our sins and their penalty are removed from us. The atonement satisfies both the demands of the Father and the needs of Christ’s people (1 Pt. 1:2).

“When Jesus gave himself for us, he gave us all the rights and privileges which went with himself; so that now, although as eternal God, he has essential rights to which no creature may venture to pretend, yet as Jesus, the Mediator, the federal head of the covenant of grace, he has no heritage apart from us. All the glorious consequences of his obedience unto death are the joint riches of all who are in him, and on whose behalf he accomplished the divine will. See, he enters into glory, but not for himself alone, for it is written, “Whither the Forerunner is for us entered.” Heb. 6:20. Does he stand in the presence of God?-“He appears in the presence of God for us.” Heb. 9:24. (Spurgeon)

Can we now say with confidence this day with Paul himself: “If God be for us… who can be against us?”

Aren’t we grateful to the Lord this day that He has not “rewarded us according to our sin, nor dealt with us according to our iniquity?” (Psalm 103:10). In Christ all our “sins are forgiven for His name’s sake” (1 John 2:12); He has “forgiven us all our transgressions” (Col. 2:13).

What a wonderful, merciful Savior we have in the Lord Jesus Christ. And He is worthy of our reverence, respect, worship and adoration.