More About Jesus – The Mediator

Man has a need.  He has a need that is far above all other needs.  And that is the need to be saved.  All men are born under the wrath of God.  There is none righteous, no not one.  For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.  Sin is a horrible thing.  We lose sight of that in this day and age.

The entertainment of our culture tends to cause us to lose our sensitivity toward sin.  Sin is portrayed as fun or excitement.  The inevitable consequences to sin are ignored in the presentation.  The ultimate consequence of sin is an eternity in hell.  Think about it just a moment.  Sin is so bad that it deserves an eternity in hell.  Man needs to be saved from those consequences.

The problem is that man cannot save himself.  Why?  One reason is that God has a perfect standard.  You break the law in one point you are guilty of all.  No man can be perfect, we are sinners.  Another reason is if we could we would boast in pride. Eph 2:8-9  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:  Not of works, lest any man should boast.

Boasting in heaven would ruin heaven.  Heaven is perfect, nothing will be let in that defiles.  Let’s make no mistake, man must have a mediator.  Someone who can do for us what we are unable to do for ourselves.  And that mediator can be found only in Christ Jesus.

I.  There is a necessity for Salvation.

a.  There is a Penalty

There are things that God Cannot do.  He cannot lie for example.

Tit 1:2  In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began;

And when God created He declared that sin has a penalty.

Gen 2:15  And the LORD God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.

Gen 2:16  And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:

Gen 2:17  But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

God in His perfect will decided what the penalty would be.  He clearly declared that the penalty for disobeying would be death.  Death means separation.  Man would loose fellowship with a Holy God.  And so all men are born with the same penalty upon them.

When Adam sinned, He died spiritually. We are all now born dead in trespasses and sins.  Born spiritually dead.  And when Adam sinned, he started to die physically.

When God created, He also set it up so that everything reproduces after its kind.  Alligators do not have bunny rabbits.  Alligators produce Alligators.  And it is the same for man.  Man does not give birth to monkeys.  And a man with a sin nature can only give birth to a man with a sin nature.

This is why we are all born with a sin nature.  If nothing is done for us, we will spend an eternity in hell separated from God.

We all sin and there is a penalty for it.

Rom 6:23  For the wages of sin [is] death; but the gift of God [is] eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

b. The Problem

Mark it down Pride is at the center of all Sin.  A corrupt tree cannot produce good fruit, and a sinner cannot produce good works that are not tainted with pride.

Isa 64:6  But we are all as an unclean [thing], and all our righteousnesses [are] as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.

Eph 2:8  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: [it is] the gift of God:

Eph 2:9  Not of works, lest any man should boast.

This leaves man with no hope, except for a three letter word.  But.

Rom 5:8  But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

I am very thankful that there is a way out of the situation of being born a sinner and no way to work my way out of it and no power to get rid of my sin nature.  I am thankful that there is a solution.

II  The Only Solution.

Since we are starting out as a new house church, I thought it would be good every other week to take a close look at our Savior.  This is lesson number 4.  The lessons so far have been leading up to today’s lesson.  Lesson 1 was Jesus Is God – So He has the power to save, as creator He has the authority to save (It is His creation, He can do what He wants with it), as God He has the right to offer forgiveness. (He is the one who was sinned against, He is the one who has the right to forgive)

Lesson 2 Jesus became man so He could be our substitute.  We could not save ourselves.  Our sin nature corrupts anything we would try to do to fix it and God’s Holiness demands a full perfect payment for sin.  What He said originally cannot be ignored, or swept under the rug.  God cannot lie so the wages of sin is death must come to pass.

So someone perfect has to die for sin.  A substitute is necessary to fulfill the conditions that God originally set.

So Jesus left the glories of Heaven and came to earth and was born of a virgin and made in the likeness of men to live a sinless life and be our substitute.  To pay the penalty of death for sin.

And the way that God decreed that this payment be made is not a pretty sight.  God gave His prophet Isaiah details about the cross centuries before Jesus left Heaven to come to earth and go to the cross.

Isa 53:3  He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were [our] faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

Isa 53:4  Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.

Isa 53:5  But he [was] wounded for our transgressions, [he was] bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace [was] upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

Isa 53:6  All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.

All of our sin was laid upon Jesus.  The iniquity of us all by a supernatural judicial act of the Almighty our sin was actually laid upon Jesus on the cross.

Isa 53:7  He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.

Isa 53:8  He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken.

Isa 53:9  And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither [was any] deceit in his mouth.

Isa 53:10  Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put [him] to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see [his] seed, he shall prolong [his] days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.

His soul was made an offering for sin. Our wicked filthy sin.  And it says it put him to grief.  We can never fully understand.  We have no frame of reference with which to understand.  The one who never sinned.  Pure holy undefiled.  Actually had sin laid upon Him.  And not just a little sin.  All of it.  For all men.  For all men who ever lived before the cross and all men who would live after the Cross.

The grief would have been incredible.  Isaiah calls it the travail of His soul

Isa 53:11  He shall see of the travail of his soul, [and] shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.

Over and over again God told Isaiah that the coming messiah would pay for sin, would bear sin, and doing this would justify many.

Isa 53:12  Therefore will I divide him [a portion] with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.

He hath poured out his soul unto death.  He made intercession for sinners, he bare their sin.

The wages of sin is death.  Someone had to die and it had to be someone who is qualified.

And He qualifies because of His perfect sinless character.  He is the just dying for the unjust.

So lesson 1 was Jesus is God.  Lesson 2 was Jesus became man.   Lesson 3 was about His character.  This is important.  Because if Jesus was flawed, He could not be our substitute.  If Jesus had sin he would have to die for His own sin.  So in lesson three we looked at what the Bible has to say about His character and we saw that He is

Lovely and Holy, righteous, and good, faithful, sinless, true, just, in Him is no guile, He is harmless, Obedient to the Father, He is meek, merciful, compassionate, loving, self-denying, humble, and forgiving.

There is no flaw in Him.  He is the solution, the only solution.  The only one that could be a proper substitute.  The only one that could fully make a payment for sin.

Joh 14:6  Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

1Ti 2:5  For [there is] one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;

A mediator is one who mediates and brings two parties together.  As God Jesus could reach up to Heaven and as man He could reach out to us.  He is the only one that could do this.  He is the only mediator there is between God and man.

The only solution is to get saved.

Joh 3:7  Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.

Jesus said ye must be born again.  You must be.  There is no other way.

It is amazing how many people reject the simple plan of salvation.

A banker and a businessman sat opposite each other in the manager’s office the businessman leaning forward was talking most earnestly, when, suddenly, the banker interrupted him “Ridiculous Absurd foolishness and the proud banker curled up his lip in scorn.  But why? said the businessman.

The face of the banker took on a scowl, and there was anger in his voice as he answered, why? Do you mean to tell me that the death of Jesus Christ in my place on the cross is going to satisfy God?  Away with such theories.  If I am to be saved, I must accomplish it by my own efforts.  And he stamped his foot with passion.

Ah said the businessman.  Now I know what the trouble is. You think you have a right to manufacture a way of your own, and so you reject and spurn the plan God provided.  What do you mean by that? Questioned the banker.

Now listen said the businessman.  Suppose a man should come to you and say, Mr. Banker, I am in great need, and I want you to loan me some money.  Tell me, who would have the right to make the terms and conditions upon which the money was to be loaned – you as the banker and owner, or the man in need?

Why, I would, of course.  He would have to meet my conditions before he could get the money, replied the banker.  Exactly. And that, sir, is your position.  You are the poor, helpless sinner, lost and undone; and God is the great Banker.  You are coming to Him for mercy and pardon.  Will you tell me who has the right to make the terms and lay down the conditions upon which you may receive his salvation?

Ah I never saw it that way before, responded the banker in an astonished tone of voice.  Why of course, I am not in a position to dictate terms.  God has that right and he alone.

And you have been manufacturing a scheme of your own and all the time God has been offering you salvation according to his plan.  Will you now abandon yours and accept his.  Are you ready to meet God on his own terms? God helping me, I will replied the banker.

God has set His terms.  We are sinners and cannot meet the terms on our own, but God sent His Son who can pay the penalty.  The terms to us are now available and simple.  Believe we are a sinner and call upon Him with a repentant heart to save us.

Rom 10:9  That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

Rom 10:10  For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Rom 10:11  For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

Rom 10:12  For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.

Rom 10:13  For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

What a wonderful thing.  Jesus did it all, we just have to believe and call upon Him for salvation.

Why preach this to people who are already saved?  A good reminder every now and then is helpful.

1 It helps to keep us thankful.  He did for us what we could not have done.

2 It helps our assurance of salvation.  Face it we still carry the old sin nature with us thru this life, and sometimes we falter, we backslide, and sometimes we just have a hard time and don’t feel saved.  It helps to be reminded that our Salvation rests upon what Jesus did and not on our feelings.

3 It helps our desire to want others to receive this wonderful gift that we have received.

And going over what Jesus did for us helps us realize other things that Jesus did for us.

III       Jesus’ work on the cross did more than provide Salvation.

a. Made peace with God the Father for us.

Eph 2:13  But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.

Eph 2:14  For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition [between us];

Eph 2:15  Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, [even] the law of commandments [contained] in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, [so] making peace;

Eph 2:16  And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:

Eph 2:17  And came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh.

Because of His work on the Cross we now have peace with God, and we are made nigh to God.  We are made close to God by the blood of Christ.  So it is not this idea that ok you are saved from hell.  See you when you die.  Nope.  It is not like that at all.  We are made close to God.  We are now His children.  We have been adopted into His family.

His eyes is now upon us in a new way, and His heart is toward us in a new way.

We have peace with Him and are made close to Him.  And this

b. Gives us access to the Throne to find the help we need.

Eph 2:18  For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.

Heb 4:16  Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.

What Jesus did on the cross does not only affect the day we got saved and our eternal destination.  It also affects our life every day of our lives.

We now have access to Pray to Him and obtain mercy.  He now hears our prayers in a new way.  God is all present and all knowing.  Yes he hears the prayers of lost people, but He does not hear them the same way.

With us it is now hearing as in really listening.  Hearing as in being moved to action.  And living in this messed up sin stained world, we have needs.   We need grace and mercy and help and guidance, every day for all kinds of issues.

This is another reason to preach the cross to saved people.  To remind us that because of the cross we have access to the throne to find grace to help in time of need.  We are now His children and He is listening as a Loving Heavenly Father.

c. Gives us the ability to serve Him. 

Heb 9:14  How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?

Because of the cross, we now have the ability to serve the living God.  Before we were dead in trespasses and sins and had no ability to serve God in a way that was acceptable and pleasing to Him.

That has all changed now.  Each of us can now do things for Him that please Him.  Each one of us can now hear Well done thou good and faithful servant.   Each one of us can now lay up for ourselves treasures in Heaven.

Every one of us can now let God use us to love others.  Dead works are over.  We have been made alive to God.  The bondage of sin is over, we now live in freedom.   And now have great freedom to show God our love for Him by doing things for Him.

This is a wonderful thing.  It is a privilege to serve our loving Lord.  And service is what is expected.  It is only right.

Heb 12:28  Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear:

And God will empower us to serve Him acceptable.  It says let us have grace whereby we may serve God acceptably.  Grace is the unmerited favor of God.  He gives grace.  He helps His children.

He has an unlimited supply of grace.  Unlimited amount of help available.  Ask and it shall be given you.  He will give you opportunities, He will work in your heart.  You can be used by the Almighty.

We can be a blessing to others.  We can be a part of changing the eternal destination of others.  We can see lives changed.  The wonder of it all.

And the only reason.  The bottom line of it all is what Jesus did on the cross.

He is worthy.

There are many reasons to preach the cross now and then to those who are saved.   It is good for His children to be reminded of His great Love and what He saved us from, and it is good to be reminded of some of the things that the cross enables us to do after we are saved.  Like being close to God and the ability to pray and the ability to serve Him.

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