Spirit & Life Devotional
Sunday, 22 May 2016
Chinaemerem Joshua Ibezim
Jesus, The Great Substitute
"So Pilate, wanting to gratify the crowd, released Barabbas to them; and he delivered Jesus, after he had scourged Him, to be crucified." Mark 15:15 NKJV
Barabbas was a murderer, and he was going to be executed, but the Jews requested that he should be released to them and that Jesus be crucified instead. What happened that day, without the knowledge of the Jews, was exactly a fulfillment of Jesus' assignment on earth; He came to be a substitute for us in the place of judgement.
We sinned, and we deserved to be punished, but Jesus Who did not sin was punished and killed. Isaiah 53:5-6 says, "But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement for our peace was upon Him, and by His stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned, every one, to his own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all."
II Corinthians 5:21 says, "For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." You see, we are not righteous because of our own works, but because Jesus was our substitute! And in the same vein, we are not condemned because of what we do, because Jesus was condemned for us! That's why Romans 8:1 says that there's therefore now no condemnation for those in Christ!
Even now, the sacrifice of Jesus still speaks for you and I. We sin: we tell lies, we fornicate and commit adultery, we cheat, we steal, we even kill; and yet we can still be made righteous in God's sight if we confess our sins. I John 1:9 says that "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." Glory to Jesus!