Don’t Forget the Other Half of the Gospel

20 Dec

Here’s an excerpt that Ligonier posted on their blog on why it’s not enough simply to say that the Gospel is that Jesus died for our sins:

For Jesus to qualify as our Redeemer, it was not enough for Him simply to go to the cross and be crucified. If you ask a six-year-old child, “What did Jesus do for you?” that child, if he or she has been to Sunday school, will answer, “Jesus died on the cross for my sins.” That’s true, but that is only half of the matter. If all that was necessary to redeem us was for a substitute to bear the punishment that we deserve, Jesus did not have to be born to Mary. He could have descended from heaven as a man, gone straight to Golgotha, died on the cross, risen, and left again, and our sin problem would be fixed.

But if Jesus had only paid for our sins, He would have succeeded only in taking us back to square one. We would no longer be guilty, but we still would have absolutely no positive righteousness to bring before God. So, our Redeemer not only needed to die, He had to live a life of perfect obedience. The righteousness that He manifested could then be transferred to all who put their trust in Him. Just as my sin is transferred to Him on the cross when I put my trust in Him, His righteousness is transferred to my account in the sight of God. So, when I stand before God on the judgment day, God is going to see Jesus and His righteousness, which will be my cover.

That is the gospel.

[HT: Ligonier]

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