Jesus: The perfect salvation program

425 jesus the perfect recovery programTowards the end of his gospel, these fascinating comments of the apostle John are to be read: "Jesus did many other things before his disciples who are not written in this book ... But if one after the other should be written down, then I would "The world does not grasp the books that should be written" (Jn 20,30, 21,25). Based on these remarks, and taking into account the differences between the four Gospels, it can be concluded that the mentioned accounts were not written as complete tracings of Jesus' life. John states that his scriptures are meant to "that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by faith you may have life in His name" (John 20,31). The main focus of the Gospels is to proclaim the good news of the Savior and the redemption granted to us.

Although John in verse 31 sees salvation (life) linked to Jesus 'name, Christians speak of being saved by Jesus' death. While this succinct statement is correct enough, the sole reference to salvation on the death of Jesus can blind us to the fullness of who He is and what He has done for our salvation. The events of Holy Week remind us that Jesus' death, of vital importance, is to be seen in a larger context that includes the incarnation of our Lord, His death, resurrection, and ascension. They are all essential, inseparably interwoven milestones of his work of salvation - the work that gives us life in its name. So during Holy Week, as in the rest of the year, we want to see in Jesus the perfect work of salvation.

incarnation

Jesus' birth was not the ordinary birth of an ordinary person. Being unique in every way, it embodies the beginning of the incarnation of God Himself. With Jesus' birth, God came to us in the same way as man has been born since Adam. Although he remained what he was, the eternal Son of God took on human life in its full extent - from beginning to end, from birth to death. As a person, he is totally God and human. In this overwhelming statement we find an eternally valid meaning, which deserves an equally eternal appreciation.

With his incarnation, the eternal Son of God came out of eternity and as man of flesh and blood into his creation, ruled by time and space. "And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we saw his glory, a glory as the only begotten Son of the Father, full of grace and truth" (John 1,14). Jesus was indeed a true human being in all his humanity, but at the same time he was totally God - like the Father and the Holy Spirit. His birth fulfills many prophecies and embodies the promise of our salvation.

The incarnation did not end with the birth of Jesus - it continued beyond his whole life on earth and today finds its further realization with his glorified human life. The incarnate (ie fleshed) Son of God remains the same as the Father and the Holy Spirit - his divine nature is fully present and almighty in action, giving his life as a human being a unique meaning. As 8,3-4 wrote in Romans, "For what was impossible for the law, because it was weakened by the flesh, did God: He sent his Son in the guise of sinful flesh and sin, and condemned the sin in the flesh that the righteousness demanded by the law might be fulfilled in us, who now live not according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit "- Paul further explains that" we are saved by his life "(Rom 5,10).

Jesus' life and ministry are inextricably interwoven - both are part of the incarnation. The God-Man Jesus is the perfect High Priest and mediator between God and men. He took part in human nature and did justice to humanity by leading a sinless life. This circumstance allows us to understand how he can cultivate a relationship, both with God and with men. While we usually celebrate his birth at Christmas, the events of his whole life are always part of our all-out praise - even in Holy Week. His life reveals the relationship character of our salvation. Jesus, in the form of Himself, brought together God and humanity in a perfect relationship.

Tod

Some mislead the short message that we were saved by Jesus' death, the misguided misperception that his death was a sacrifice of atonement that led God to grace. I pray that we all recognize the fallacy of this thought.

TF Torrance writes that in Jesus' death, in the light of a right understanding of the Old Testament sacrifices, we see no pagan sacrifice for forgiveness, but the powerful witness of the will of a gracious God (Atonement: The Person and Work of Christ : Person and Work of Christ], p. 38-39). Pagan sacrificial rites were based on the principle of retribution, whereas Israel's sacrificial system was based on forgiveness and reconciliation. Instead of earning forgiveness through sacrificial offerings, the Israelites were enabled by God to acquit their sins and thus be reconciled to them.

Israel's sacrificial practices were designed to testify to and manifest God's love and grace by pointing to the destiny of Jesus' death given in reconciliation with the Father. With his death, our Lord also defeated Satan and took the power of death himself: "Now that the children of flesh and blood are, he too has received it equally, that by his death he might take the power of the one who had power over death, that is, the devil, and redeemed those who throughout their lives had to be servants because of fear of death "(Heb. 2,14-15). Paul added that Jesus must "reign until God puts all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death "(1Kor 15,25-26). Jesus' death manifests the atoning aspect of our salvation.

Auferstehung

On Easter Sunday, we celebrate Jesus' resurrection, which fulfills many prophecies of the Old Testament. The author of the Letter to the Hebrews points out Isaac's salvation from death, reflecting the resurrection (Heb. 11,18-19). From the book of Jonah we learn that this "three days and three nights" was in the body of the big fish (Jon 2, 1). Jesus referred to that event concerning his death, burial and resurrection (Mt 12,39-40); Mt 16,4 and 21; Joh 2,18-22).

We celebrate Jesus' resurrection with great joy because it reminds us that death is not final. Rather, it represents an intermediate step on our way into the future - eternal life in communion with God. At Easter we celebrate Jesus' victory over death and the new life we ​​will have in him. Full of joy, we look forward to the time spoken of in Revelation 21,4: "[...] and God will wipe away all the tears from her eyes, and death will be no more, nor pain nor scream nor pain will be more his; for the first has passed away. "The resurrection stands for the hope of our salvation.

Ascension

Jesus' birth led to his life and his life to his death. However, we can not separate His death from His resurrection, nor His resurrection from His ascension. He did not emerge from the grave to lead a life in human form. In glorious human nature he ascended to the Father in heaven, and only with that great event did the work begun by him end.

In the introduction to Torrances' book Atonement, Robert Walker wrote: "With the resurrection, Jesus absorbs our essence as a human being and attributes it to the presence of God in unity and communion of trinitarian love." CS Lewis put it this way: "In Christian history descends to God and then begins again. "The wonderful good news is that Jesus lifted us up with Him. "... and he has raised us up and intervened in heaven in Christ Jesus, that in the ages to come he may display the effusive riches of his grace through his goodness towards us in Christ Jesus" (Eph. 2,6-7).

Incarnation, death, resurrection and ascension - they are all part of our salvation and thus our praise in Holy Week. These milestones point to everything that Jesus has accomplished for us with all his life and ministry. Let us see more and more, who he is and what he has done for us, all year long. He represents the perfect work of salvation.

by Josep Tkack