Read - 1 John 1:29
Message - Alan Burke
As we think of Christmas according to John’s gospel we have been thinking of this confession of John the Baptist who was enabled by God to see how Jesus was the Lamb of God. For Jesus is the one, who provided a sacrifice that was once and for all, where Issac asked “where is the lamb” the entirety of the Old Testament had been pointing to the one who would come, Jesus was and is the Lamb of God. His purpose in coming was to deal with the disease that we all have, sin. I hope that as you read this you will know what sin is, maybe you know the catechism answer that summarises the teaching of scripture which is “Sin is any want of conformity unto, or transgression of, the law of God” (WSC14). There are of course many people today that dismiss sin, who think that we are born inherently good and to them the bibles teaching on sin is abusive. The reality is something different, David confessed in Ps 51 how he was brought forth in iniquity and in sin did his mother conceive him (51:5).
Sin is a disease that we all try to cover up, but only when we understand the gravity of problem that we are able to look for the right cure. It is not that we are sinful because of the sins we commit, rather the sins that we commit are the outworking of who we are, for we are sinful. Each and every time we sin, we show that sinful nature. Also sin is defined not first in relation to one another as creatures, but is defined in our relation to God the Creator, it is God orientated, when we put ourselves and our wills, wants, wishes above God, that is sin.
God demands the same from us as He did from Adam, obedience to His word, to His law, it is the same that He has demanded of every human being. Yet though Christ… “For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.” (Rom 8:3-4). God the Father sent His Son to be the sinless Lamb, (Heb 7:26), to be our sin-bearer (2 Cor 5:17-21). For Jesus was the true and better Adam. Jesus obeyed the word of the Father, his obedience came from His love for His Father, He committed no sin, (1 Peter 2:21–25), and not even His contemporaries were able to convict Him of transgression (John 8:46). Jesus kept the whole law for us, it was not only was his death substitutionary but also His life. And in his death, he willingly laid down His life for His flock (John 10:1–18).
Jesus became sin for us (2 Cor 5:21), in doing so he received the wrath of God that was due to the sins of His people. Through faith there is a glorious exchange, the righteousness of Christ is placed upon us, through His substitutionary life and death, in how he dealt with Sin. For the believer they can have confidence in this glorious exchange. Our sin should drive us to Jesus, knowing that it is reliant on the Lamb of God who came to take away sin, God’s amazing love should drive us Him, it is so counter intuitive, as God meets our greatest need for it is not what we deserve but rather what He gives us freely through the Lamb, Jesus Christ.It is to Him that we must look, for when He is our focus, then that will be worked out in our lives. For it’s not about you, it’s not about me, it’s the opposite of how this world works and what we teach our children, for what matters is not how good we are, how smart we are, how pretty, handsome, what matters is Jesus.
Jesus, the Lamb of God.
Q29 How are we made partakers of the redemption purchased by Christ?
We are made partakers of the redemption purchased by Christ, by the effectual application of it to us, (John 1:11–12) by his Holy Spirit. (Titus 3:5–6)