“Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.”
If God loved us so much, why couldn’t he just forgive when Adam sinned? Why did blood have to be shed? Why did Jesus have to die? These are very valid questions, and the responses to them will help you appreciate Christ’s sacrifice even more. There are two things you must understand about the character of God. God is just, but he is also merciful.
Say for example, a judge was asked to try the case of his son who had committed a crime. He might decide to pardon his son. That would prove him to be merciful. But he would not be ‘just’ in doing that. On the other hand, a just father knows that it would be injustice to pardon someone who is guilty simply because they are related. If he decides to find his son guilty, he might be just, but he would not be merciful.
Can you understand God’s position now? He cannot change. It is in His nature to be both just and merciful. If he had simply forgiven Adam, he would have gone against his own laws and that would not have been just. The wages of sin is death. Adam deserved death. But God is also merciful. Hence, his plan of salvation; he would come into the earth and pay the punishment on man’s behalf.
1Ti 3:16 KJV says: “And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory.”
Jesus was God in the flesh. He was our offering, He died to pay for our sins. Because of him, we’ve been forgiven. But guess what? He went a step further, He was raised back to life for us to be justified, for us to be described as not guilty before God. We aren’t just forgiven, we’ve been justified. We have been declared ‘Not Guilty!’ All because of Jesus.
Take a look at 2Co 5:17-19: “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.”
The realization of these must move us to do two things; The first is to preach the gospel always, letting people know that God no longer inputs their sins! It is your job to let people know that God yearns for a relationship with them. The second thing is to forgive those who have wronged us. It is a paradox to find an unforgiving Christian. The reason why you bear the name Christian in the first place is because Christ forgave you even when you were undeserving. You must also treat others with the same grace.