Sin Laid Upon Christ
Not only was the Lord of glory punished for sin, he was made to be sin. Christ Jesus not only bore the wrath and indignation of God against sin, but he was made sin for us. The Son of God was made to be sin for us because there was no possible way for God's elect to be discharged of their sins, but for Christ to be made sin. I do not say that it was necessary for God to put away sin. There was nothing in us that compelled God to be gracious. And he had nothing to be gained from us by choosing to be gracious. God's purpose of grace and determination to put away the sins of his elect was altogether a matter of pure sovereignty. God's will to save us was a matter of absolute freedom and sovereignty. He loved us because he would love us. He is gracious because he will be gracious. But I do say this: Once God determined to redeem and save an elect people, he could do it only by the satisfaction of his justice, only by making his own dear Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, to be sin for us. If redemption could be accomplished by any other means, God would have found it. God did not sacrifice his Son for nothing! The only way possible for fallen man to be just with God was for satisfaction to be made. And the only way for satisfaction to be made was for God's own Son to become incarnate, establish righteousness in the room of his people, have our sin imputed to him, and suffer the full penalty of the law, even unto death, as our Substitute. Therefore, from old eternity, in the covenant of grace, the Lord God looked upon his Son as our Redeemer and declared, with regard to each of his elect, "Deliver him from going down to the pit, I have found a ransom!" And in his immutable purpose of grace "he laid on him (as the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world) the iniquity of us all." Then, in the fulness of time, it was done. Christ was made to be sin for us!