Why Was Jesus Christ’s Death Necessary And Important – Spiritual Reading.
The first thing that the Bible plainly teaches on this question is the absolute necessity and fundamental importance of the death of Jesus Christ, the absolute necessity and fundamental importance of the shedding of His blood. The tendency of our day in Unitarian circles, and in orthodox circles that have been leavened by the corrupting leaven of Unitarianism, is to minimise the importance of the death of our Lord Jesus Christ.
The tendency is to make His life and character, His teaching and leadership, the main thing. Christian Science even goes so far as to deny the fact of His death. To them His supposed death is “an illusion,” it is “only mortal thought,” but the Bible puts the emphasis upon His atoning death.
1. The death of Jesus Christ is mentioned directly more than 175 times in the New Testament. Besides this there are very many prophetic and typical references to the death of Jesus Christ in the Old Testament.
When Mr. Alexander and I were holding our meetings in the Royal Albert Hall in London, some one took away one of our hymn books and went through it and cut out every reference to the blood, and then sent it back to me through the mail, saying, “I have gone through your hymn book and cut out every reference to the blood.
These references to the blood are foolish. Now sing your hymns with the blood left out and there will be some sense in them.” If any of you should take your Bible and go through it in that way and cut out of the New Testament and the Old Testament every passage that referred to the death of Christ, or to His atoning blood, you would have only a sadly torn and tattered Bible left, a Bible without a heart and a Gospel without saving power.
If I were a member of a church where the pastor said that he preached a system of “religious doctrine, without a devil, without a hell, without an atonement of blood and recompense, without an infallible Bible,” to use his own language, he would see his audience “melting away like snow in the rain” as far as I was concerned. I would either take my hat and get out of that church, or else the pastor would take his hat and get out of the pulpit; for I should know that he was not preaching God’s pure, saving gospel, but the Devil’s poisonous substitute for the gospel.
2. Not only are the references to the death of [Christ so numerous in Old Testament and New Testament, but we are taught distinctly in Hebrews 2:14 that Jesus Christ became a man for the specific purpose of dying, that He became a partaker of flesh and blood in order that He might die.
In this passage we read, “For as much as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, He also Himself likewise took part of the same; that through death He might destroy him that had the power of death, that is the Devil” (Heb. 2:14).
The meaning of these words is as plain as day. They tell us that the incarnation was for the purpose of the death. They tell us that Jesus Christ’s death was not a mere accident or incident of His human life (as many would have us believe), but that it was the supreme purpose of it. He became man in order that He might die as man and for man. This is the doctrine of the Bible, and it is true for anybody and for everybody.
3. Furthermore, He died for a specific purpose, as a ransom for us. He Himself said so. In Matt. 20:28 He says, “The Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give His life a ransom for many.”
4. One of the most remarkable scenes recorded in the New Testament is that of the transfiguration, when Moses and Elijah came back from the other world to commune with Jesus. And what did they talk about in that great moment of human history?
Luke tells us in the 9th chapter of his Gospel, the 30th and 31st verses, “And behold, there talked with Him (i.e., with Jesus) two men, which were Moses and Elijah: who appeared in glory, and spake of His decease which He was about to accomplish at Jerusalem.” His atoning death was the one subject that engrossed the attention of these two who came back from the glory world. We are also told in I Peter 1:10-12 that the death of Jesus Christ is a subject of intensest interest and earnest inquiry on the part of the angels.
5. The death of Christ is the central theme of heaven’s song. Rev. 5:8-12 gives us a picture of heaven with its wonderful choir of ten thousand times ten thousand and thousands of thousands, and this is the description of the song they sing: “And when he had taken the book, the four living creatures and the four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having each one a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints. And they sing a new song, saying, Worthy art thou to take the book and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and didst purchase unto God with thy blood men of every tribe, and tongue, and people, and nation, and madest them to be unto our God a kingdom and priests; and they reign upon the earth. And I saw, and I heard a voice of many angels round about the throne and the living creatures and elders; and the number of them was ten thousand times ten thousand, and thousands of thousands; saying with a great voice, Worthy is the Lamb that was [slain to receive the power, and riches, and wisdom, and might, and honour, and glory, and blessing. And every created thing which is in the heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and on the sea, and all things that are in them, heard I saying, Unto him that sitteth on the throne, and unto the Lamb, be the blessing, and the honour, and the glory, and the dominion, for ever and ever” (Rev. 5:8-12).
So it is evident that the great central theme of heaven’s song is the atoning death of Jesus Christ, and the shed “blood” by which He redeemed “men of every tribe, and tongue, and nation.” If the Unitarian or the Christian Scientist or the New Theologian should get to heaven they would have no song to sing. The glorious song of that wondrous choir would sound to him like a song “of the shambles.” He would be very lonesome and feel that he had got into the wrong pew.
Excerpt From – The Fundamental Doctrines Of The Christian Faith By Reuben Archer Torrey.
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