The Blessed Comfort of Christ’s Satisfaction
I want you to understand from the Word of God both the necessity and the blessedness of Christ’s satisfaction of Divine justice by his death on the cross. This is a matter of utmost importance. It is the glory of the gospel and the glory of the Christian religion. It is the satisfaction of Divine justice by the death of Christ that distinguishes Christianity from all other religions. Take the cross out of Christianity, take away the satisfaction of Christ by his death upon the cross, and Christianity is of no more value and benefit to the souls of men than Judaism, Islam, or Hinduism. It is of paramount importance, because without satisfaction for sin, there could be no salvation from it.
It was necessary for Christ to suffer and die on the cross under the wrath of God to save his people. He did not have to save us. But if he would save us, he could not save in any other way. Justice demanded it (Proverbs 16:6; 17:15; Romans 4:5; 1 Peter 3:18). This is what the Spirit of God teaches us in Hebrews 2:9-10.
Since it was the design, purpose, and pleasure of the Almighty to bring some of the sons of men into eternal glory and happiness as the sons of God by Christ, it was necessary for Christ, the Son of God, to suffer all that the law and justice of God required for the punishment of sin, dying under the wrath of God as our Substitute.
I am not suggesting that the satisfaction of Christ procured the love of God for us. It does not. The death of Christ is the fruit of God’s love, not the cause of it. But I am saying that it is the death of Christ and the satisfaction of justice by his death that opens the way for sinners to enjoy the glorious, saving embraces of God’s almighty, gracious arms. We could never have been reconciled to God without the shedding of Christ’s blood.
Every sinner who is reconciled to God by faith in Christ is included in the number of those for whom satisfaction was made at Calvary. John Gill wrote, “Have you any reason to believe that you have, at any time, had communion with God, in private or in public, in your closet, or in the family, or in the house of God, under any ordinance, either the ministry of the Word, or prayer, or the Supper of the Lord? Then you may be assured Christ has made satisfaction for you; or you would never have enjoyed such communion.”
What a horrible evil sin is! Nothing but the blood of Christ could make satisfaction for it. God almighty will punish sin. The death of Christ as the sinner’s Substitute demonstrates the strictness of God’s holy law. Yet, there is a way open for sinners to come to God. Christ is the Way. He has made satisfaction for sin. If you trust him, if you come to God by faith in him, he made satisfaction for your sin!
Let us ever and increasingly admire and adore the perfections of our God revealed in the gospel (Psalm 85:10-11). Admire his love! Adore his mercy! Rejoice in his grace! Stand in awe of his wisdom, holiness, justice, and truth! All shine forth gloriously in the satisfaction of Christ. — “For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons to glory, to make the Captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.” Wisdom found a ransom. Holiness approved of it. Justice is satisfied with it. The gospel proclaims it!
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