Brethren, have you ever asked yourself, “Why did Yahshua have to die?” If Yahweh is so powerful, He is the supreme Ruler of this vast universe, and He is the ultimate Authority, then why can’t He save us without requiring the death of His Son? Why can’t He automatically forgive us without asking for any sacrifice?
As we approach the day of Passover, I believe that we need to review these things because it helps to better prepare for this important day. One central theme of the Passover is the life, death, and resurrection of Yahshua.
In the Scripture, we are instructed to examine ourselves and reflect on the greatest sacrifice Yahweh and His Son made just to redeem us of our sins. Part of that reflection is understanding the reason why Christ had to die for us.
That’s why, in this message, I would like to share with you three reasons why Yahshua has to die.
First reason: Christ died for us to maintain the integrity of God’s law and justice
Yahweh sets immutable laws to govern our behavior and help us know how to live this life. The problem is that we, as humans, can’t perfectly keep God’s law. We read in Romans 3:23:
“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”
All of us sinned. None of us is perfect. The moment we sin, we have earned ourselves the penalty of breaking God’s law.
What’s that penalty? We read in Romans 6:23:
“For the wages of sin is death…”
Now, the God we serve is both the God of justice and mercy. He is merciful, but He is also just. Every one of us has sinned and thus, all of us have to die. That’s how the law works. It demands a penalty.
If God will simply forgive us without paying the penalty for sin, what will happen? God’s integrity will be destroyed. We will have a God who breaks His law. We will have an imperfect God who can’t keep His word.
This is where the sacrifice of Yahshua comes in. That’s exactly what it means for Yahshua to pay the price of breaking God’s law. He died for us. Instead of us dying, Yahshua took upon Himself the penalty of sin, which is death, so that we will live.
If you continue reading Romans 6:23, we will learn this:
23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Notice, the wages of sin is death. Why did Paul use the term wage? He could have just said, penalty or consequences, but why wages? It is because when we sin, we become slaves of sin.
We read in John 8:34:
34 Jesus answered them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin.”
So, when we sin, we work for sin and as a wage, our salary, our allowance, our pay, is death. It’s quite sobering and frightening to think about this, brethren. We know that the wage of sin is death, yet, we still keep on sinning!
Are you working for sin? Are you a slave of sin? Is sin the master in your life? Then, brethren, we need to realize, sin will give us our wage and that wage is death.
Thankfully, Yahshua died for us to free us from sin. Notice Romans 6:5-7:
5 For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection, 6 knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. 7 For he who has died has been freed from sin.
As you can see, brethren, Christ died for us to redeem us from slavery that brought about sin and we are set free to follow God.
Now, the next question is, if we are freed from sin, what should we do next? This leads us to the second reason.
Second reason: Christ died for us so we can live for righteousness
Yahshua died for our sins, but that doesn’t mean that we don’t need to do anything. Like a man pardoned by a judge for his crimes, that man is not free to commit another crime when he is released. In fact, that man is expected to change and improve his life.
The same goes for us, Christians. Jesus bought us with a price. He died so that our sins will be forgiven.
Now that our sins are forgiven, what should we do? Does it mean that we are free to do whatever we want? Obviously, the answer is NO.
We read in 1 Peter 2:23-24:
23 Who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously; 24 who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness.
Since Christ died for us, we must not make His sacrifice in vain. We need to live a life of righteousness, a life dedicated to following God and doing His will in our lives.
In Romans 6:17-18, we read:
17 But God be thanked that though you were slaves of sin, yet you obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine to which you were delivered. 18 And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness.
Christ’s death freed us from sin, it freed us from working for sin. Now, it doesn’t stop there. You don’t simply stop being a slave to sin, but you need to start being a slave of righteousness.
“Slaves of righteousness” is just another way of saying slaves of God. We read in Romans 6:22:
22 But now having been set free from sin, and having become slaves of God, you have your fruit to holiness, and the end, everlasting life.
So, our master now is Yahweh and our work involves righteousness. When we are freed from sin, it is not because we are going to be our own masters. It is not so that we can live as we may please. No, that’s not the reason that Yahshua died for us.
He has redeemed us from the service of sin to be in the service of God. Because of the death of Christ, sin is removed and this leads us to the third reason:
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Third reason: Christ died for us to reconcile us to God
Because of the sin of Adam and Eve, we were separated from God. What’s so amazing is that after Adam and Eve partook in the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil, we read that God went out of His way and looked for them.
At the heart of it all, from the start, God exactly knew what Adam and Eve did. Yet, what was God’s response? He looked for them, which shows God’s desire for reconciliation even from the very beginning. However, because of sin, reconciliation can’t be done right there and then. It is impossible without the sacrifice of Yahshua.
We read in Romans 5:8-10:
8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us [how did God demonstrate His love?], in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
God didn’t wait for us to become righteous. He didn’t wait for us to change. He didn’t wait for us to be obedient. God proceeded in His plan of salvation because of His great love toward us.
Now, this is what I want us to remember as we approach the Passover — Christ died for us. Christ died for you and me. You are so important and precious in God’s eyes that He let His Son die for you.
Continue reading verses 9 to 10:
9 Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. 10 For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.
What reconciled us to God? Paul said, “We were reconciled to God through the death of His Son.” It was the death of Christ that removed sin that separates us from God. Because of His death, we can now “come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (Hebrews 4:16).
Brethren, these are just three of the most important reasons why Christ died for us. It is the greatest sacrifice that God the Father has to do just to redeem us from our sins. I hope you and I will see the enormous significance of Christ’s death for us.
May we not waste His sacrifice. May we ultimately live a life pleasing to Yahweh and become future kings and priests in the coming Kingdom of God.