Although that old serpent, the Devil, did cause humanity to fall under the penalty and power of sin, God had made a way that we wouldn’t have to remain down under it’s domination! All of mankind, since Adam, have become slaves to and held captive by their inner fallen nature and desire to rebel against God and His ways. Due to man’s inability to overcome the Law of Sin and Death by means of our flesh (our own strength, talents, abilities, intellectual capacities or efforts) , God would not only have to initiate redemption, He would have to BE redemption (Rom. 3:19-20,26-27, 7:23- 8:4,11). God being righteous (it is His nature to do the right thing at all times), had to punish mankind for the wrongs committed according to His standard of what is right. God gave mankind the Moral Law to show that death is the punishment we deserve according to our deeds, both physically and spiritually. Think of the worst crime people committ against one another. Now imagine that crime was committed against your loved one or family member. Would you think it was fair if they just got away with it? Would you feel it was right for the individual who undeniably committed that crime, not to suffer the penalty for it? We are not perfect and good like our Creator God. But, even our flawed consciences tell us that if someone does the crime, they should do the time. It is right for them to suffer the consequences of their actions. And likewise due to our guilt, being seperated from God for eternity is our “wages” due (Rom. 3:19-20,6:23). Because of this, redemption would have to provide a way to punish sin without annihilating the human race. As well, a way would have to be made for mankind to be delivered from the power of sin that lives within us, due to our corrupted nature after the fall. Despite the mercy of God, if only the PENALTY of our sin was removed, the POWER of sin would cause mankind to continue to desire and to be dominated by sin and, therefore, continue to live as an enemy toward God (Romans 7:23-24, 8:6-11). This would not be a total redemption.
A holy and righteous God had to punish sin without annihilating the human race, and simultaneously provide power for mankind to live free from the sin nature’s control. The only solution to this would be if a man who didn’t deserve to be punished, would take the punishment for those who were guilty. This fall guy would allow God to do what was right and not overlook punishing sin. Yet, at the same time make A Way available for the guilty sinners not to suffer the penalty and be separated from Him for eternity (Rom. 3:25-26). The only problem with this solution, was that there was no one who was not guilty. Every descendent of Adam was born with the sin nature and deserved punishment. There was no one righteous who could be the fall guy, let alone be willing. But God’s love for humanity was so great, that He would humble Himself and become a man in order to become the Substitute scapegoat. God didn’t just come up with a solution for our sin problem, He was The Solution. And thank God He was willing to do this for us! So, Jesus who is by nature God, became a man, to redeem man (Phil. 2:7-8). To be the innocent sinless victim, He would have to be born without a sin nature, like the nature of Adam when initially created. So the Holy Spirit of God overshadowed the virgin Mary and she became the mother of Jesus (Isaiah 7:14, Matt. 1:18-23, Luke 1:26-35). Jesus was still fully God, and yet, fully man as well. But, He never used the resource of His being God to overcome sin or the Devil. He lived as a man, relying on the Holy Spirit to be His power source for this (Matt. 3:15-4:11, Luke 4:18, John 6:63). “For He (God the Father) has made Him to be sin for us (a sin offering), who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Cor. 5:21). “Who His own self bear our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes you were healed” (1 Pet. 2:24). “For as by one man’s disobedience (Adam) many were made sinners, so by the obedience of One (Jesus) shall many be made righteous” (Rom. 5:19). Jesus took the sin penalty for us. And what made this so amazing was that Jesus wasn’t doing it for His friends. He did it for His enemies! “But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ would die for us” (Rom. 5:8). The Devil could never have imagined God’s solution. The Devil’s thoughts and actions are motivated by pride, self-exaltation and selfishness. God’s plan of redemption was motivated by love, exercised in humility and would require selflessness on the part of God Himself. And He didn’t have to do it for us! He didn’t need us. He is God, fully complete in Himself and in need of nothing.
But “God so loved the world (that means everybody), that He gave His only begotten Son” (John 3:16). “In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us, and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins” (1 John 4:9-10). Love led God to allow His Son to die in order that we might live. And love led Jesus to leave heaven, take the form of man, live as a servant for humanity, do only good to others, and then be rejected by the people He came to save. He was beaten, abused, spit upon, whipped and nailed on a Roman cross. “Why”, you ask? Love……… Redemption for humanity. And yet, the majority of humanity hates Him, and always will, despite what He has done for us (Rom. 5:7-8). He came to be The Substitutionary Sacrifice and suffer the penalty for our sins. And He came to Redeem us from our sin. It was the only way that we could be saved and God continue to be righteous (Rom. 3:26). But there is much more to this redemption plan than this……………..