Who is ultimately responsible for Jesus’ death? Often, this question contains political and personal agendas. Some blame the Jews, citing the mob’s call for His death and their claim to bear the responsibility. Others blame Pilate because He was the one to declare the sentence. Many of us say we ourselves are to blame because of the sins in our lives, but one we often omit is God. Ultimately, God sent Christ to Earth, and it was His plan for Jesus to die on the cross to fulfill His plan of salvation.
Sin Entering the World
The first couple of chapters in Genesis really lay a foundation for the relationship God and man should have. Simply, God provided for man’s well-being and personal freedom’s on the sole condition of obedience. God places a single boundary for His creation to avoid crossing, but Adam and Eve transgressed that boundary, bringing sin to the human experience. This creates a condition where mankind is separated from God, and God put in motion a plan to give hope to humanity, bringing them back to His presence.
From this point, the focus of God’s words begins to deal with the problem of sin and initializes a plan to eliminate the power sin has over our lives. In Genesis 3:1-8, that first sin is recorded as the serpent convinces Eve (and Adam through her) to transgress God’s command. In this, Satan shifted their attention from God’s goodness – away from the many blessings they already have – to them to desiring what they don’t have. He attacked God’s word, and brought God’s character into question. God knows the pain sin can bring us, but Satan is good at making it look appealing and inviting.
In Romans 5:12, Paul states that death enters the world through sin. Adam and Eve did, in fact, suffer physical death, but there is also spiritual death. In Isaiah 59:1-2, the people of Israel are told that their sins separate them from God and His grace. Spiritually, they are dead to God at this point, and the same can happen t o us and did happen to Adam and Eve. However, in Romans 5:10-20, Paul speaks of a free gift available through Christ that results in life, salvation from the death brought by sin. God’s plan in His grace defeats sin.
When Adam and Eve ate of the forbidden tree, they fulfilled a desire to forsake the many blessings God had already provided them to have something that was not rightfully theirs. We do the same when we sin. We are blessed in so many ways, but we always desire more and better, even when we have no right to claim those things as our own. Unfortunately, once we are captured by sin, we cannot formulate our own escape. We are problem-solvers, but sin has no solution that man can provide.
Jesus was the solution. Only His sacrifice could provide an escape from sin, but, even during His life, He met with obstacles on His path. In Matthew 16:21-23, one of the many opportunities Jesus would have to escape is presented. Many times throughout his ministry, Jesus is given the choice to disengage, but nothing would alter this plan. God chose to send His Son to ensure the fulfillment on His plan, and no one could derail that plan.
In Ephesians 1:7-8, we are told we have forgiveness through the sacrifice of Jesus. Even Jesus, during the last supper, says His blood is shed for the remission of sins, and Acts 3:18 reinforces that these things are all part of God’s plan. He lovingly laid out His plan to provide us an avenue of reconciliation with Him, to remove the death brought by sin.
It’s hard to understand why exactly God chose to create a world and populations to fill it, but He did so, and He loves His creation. He wants us to spend eternity with Him after our life here is complete, and all He asks of us is to reject that sin which separates us from Him and subject ourselves to His word. Isaiah 53:10-12 reinforces that God put Jesus here to bear our iniquities, He lived sinless, but He carried sin and its consequences as He hung on that cross for us. He has taken care of dealing with the spiritual consequences of sin. Now all that remains is for us to accept the gift He has provided.
lesson by Ben Lanius