What do you say if someone asked you to explain what happened at the cross? As Christians, our default answer goes something like this: Jesus Christ, the Son of God died for our sins.
For someone who has never read the Bible, this answer makes no sense. It will leave them with more questions than answers; questions like how God can have a son? What is a sin? If we cant answer these questions for them, we will leave them very vulnerable to religious deception and a defeated Christian life. The sad reality is this, most of the times we who confess to be saved dont know the answer to those questions. Some time ago, someone who did not have the answers to our question left us hanging as defeated vulnerable Christians. So we make them, the people we witness to, one of us. A “Christian” who knows that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, died for our sins, but they have no idea what are sins, and they can’t explain how God can have a son.
Today we are going to attempt to rectify some of these mistakes so that we all can live as overcomers and as true sons and daughters of Yehovah. (God).
What happens when we break the law? Someone who deliberately violates the law is a criminal. Someone who upholds the law and lives by it is a law-abiding citizen. There no two ways about this, when someone robs a bank, rapes, murders, steals something they break the law and someone who violates the law is a criminal.
The Bible says in 1.John 3:4, sin is breaking Gods law. So would it not be fair to say that we are all criminals in the eyes of God because we have all at one time in our lives violated His law? It would be fair to say that someone who breaks Gods law is a criminal, so sin is crimes committed against God when we deliberately choose to break His law. From this, it also follows that someone who upholds Gods law would be considered a law-abiding citizen in Gods Kingdom.
If we, as a society punishes criminals, it should not surprise us that Yehovah has to punish criminals.
Now we understand a little bit more about what happened at the cross. Jesus Christ, the Son of God, was punished for all the times you and I broke Gods law. And because breaking Gods law is a criminal act, it would be correct to say that Jesus Christ, who never broke Gods law, took upon Himself the punishment for all our crimes against God.
To put it another way, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, volunteered to be judged as a criminal so that we would not suffer the consequences of our crimes against God. What Jesus did at the cross compares to someone volunteering to serve a lifetime in prison or going to the electric chair for something they did not do so that the guilty criminal could go free and live to see another day. Who would do something like that? Someone who loves the guilty criminal so much that they can’t bear the idea of seeing them ruining their life and losing their life as a punishment for their crimes.
What would have happened if someone volunteered to serve a lifetime in prison, or volunteered to suffer the death penalty for something they did not do if the guilty criminal continued committing crimes? If someone volunteered to pay with their life and sacrifice themselves for someone else, but that someone else did not appreciate what they did and just continued living a life of crime? Would we accept such behavior? Of course not, we would rightly judge such a person as being egotistical and self-centered. But most importantly of all, the sacrifice of innocent life would be in vain and have no effect. For, in the end, the guilty criminal would still have to suffer his or her consequences for their actions.
If a law has been broken, justice must be served, and the guilty criminal has to suffer the consequences for their actions. If that guilty criminal continues a life of crime after someone having volunteered to take upon themselves their punishment, we all know a more severe punishment will be inflicted upon them. Why? Because the law demands justice will be met. The only way for the sentence to seize is if justice is served and the crimes stop.
It should not surprise us then that the Son of God Jesus Christ, who took upon Himself the punishment for our sins, expects us to change our life if we accept what He did for us.
If He expects us to change our life, it is logical we must have the ability to change?
So how would you explain the cross?
As we have seen today, Jesus, who never committed a crime in His life, loves you so much that He volunteered to be judged for your crimes against God. If you accept what He did for you at the cross, you will not have to suffer the consequences for your crimes. But if you want Him to carry your punishment, it is only logical that you decide to make a change in your life. If you go on living the life of a criminal, continually violating the law of God, the cross can not help you. One day the law will catch up to you, and you will be judged by God as a guilty criminal and have to suffer for your crimes in hell. So if you do not want to suffer for your crimes in hell, you have to start living the life of a law-abiding citizen in Gods Kingdom.
If you are a mainstream Christian, you have been told time and time again; you can’t obey the law of God.
Where is the logic in this? Why can’t you obey the law of God when the Bible says Jesus died to pay for all the times you broke it? Why can’t you obey the law of God when the Bible says breaking the law of God is what sends you to hell?
The Bible says in the book of 1.John, the book of James, the book of Exodus we are well able to obey Gods law. But the Bible also says in the book of Romans we have all at one time in our lives deliberately chosen to disobey. So nowhere in the Bible do we see it says you can’t obey the law. Instead, it says you are well able to, but because you have already chosen not to, you are guilty and on your way to hell. And because you are well able to obey God is 100% righteous when He judges you to spend an eternity in hell as punishment for your crimes against Him.
What are the consequences of believing that you can’t obey the law of God? If you believe that lie, you will choose never to study the law of God, (the written Torah). The written Torah is right there in your Bible, given to you by Yehovah (God) for you to learn so you can know how to live your life in obedience to His law. In the Gospels, Yeshua (Jesus) showed us exactly how to obey it. So we have no excuse, if we believe the lie of mainstream Christianity, we will continue living the life of a criminal and one day we will end up in hell. If we continue to live the life of a criminal, what Yeshua did for us will not affect your life because the law will catch up with us in the end.
Some believe they are well able to obey the law now that they are saved and have been given the Holy Spirit. But before they were saved, they could not follow it because of their sinful nature. Every day you are surrounded by unsaved people who are well able to obey civil law. The very fact that people are not running around murdering each other, and we are not living in anarchy, shows that a person who does not have the Holy Spirit is well able to obey a law.
This is why Yehovah (God) is 100% righteous when He sends someone to hell for their crimes which have never even heard of Yeshua.
This is also why the Israelites in the Old Testament were well able to obey the written law of Moses. They were not superhuman beings, they had no problem following the written Torah, and you and I have no problem following the written Torah before AND after salvation.
The problem we have is this: At one point in our lives, we chose to break Gods law. It was not forced upon us by some outside force, nor was it was forced upon us by some internal force. We chose to become a criminal and disobey the law of Yehovah. Now we have to suffer the consequence for it in this life, and the next in hell if we refuse the cross. If we accept the cross, we are expected to do what we would have done if someone went to jail for us or volunteered to the electric chair. We have to stop living the life of a criminal and by doing so, show our appreciation for what they volunteered to do for us.
Contrary to what most Christians are taught, the book of Leviticus says the blood of bulls and goats did take away sins. This shows us that atonement for sin has always been offered by Yehovah (God), but never atonement for intentional sins. Nowhere in the book of Leviticus does it say deliberate sins could be atoned for, and some crimes are never anything but intentional. As long as you did not commit any intentional sins, you could go to the temple in Jerusalem and sacrifice an animal. This would guarantee you an atonement for your unintentional sins. If you, on the other hand, committed an intentional crime, you would lose your relationship with Yehovah and never be able to get it back ending up in hell when you died.
When Yeshua died on the cross, the book of Isaiah says His Blood atoned for intentional AND unintentional sins. For the first time in human history, everyone who had committed a deliberate crime could have their relationship with Yehovah (God) restored. The only requirement was faith in what Yeshua did for them at the cross, and a willingness to live in obedience to the law from now on.
The requirements have not changed, now everyone can choose to have their intentional AND unintentional sins atoned for if they want to. The only thing you need to do is to accept the cross and choose to live in obedience to the law from now on.
How is that possible if you believe the law of Moses (the written Torah) does not apply to you as a Christian? The short answer is: It is not possible.
If you want the cross to apply to you, there is no choice; you have to learn the written law of Moses and start obeying it.
The book Hebrews, James, and John come with a warning to all of us who accept the cross.
Now that we have accepted the cross, we can no longer choose to break Gods laws. If we take the cross as a sacrifice for our intentional sins, it is a one-time event that cant be repeated. If you as a Christian should choose to break Gods law, you will be eternally lost and can never come back.
Do you become sinless by accepting the cross?
The book of James and the book of Leviticus says we will continue to sin, but the difference is we will continue to sin unintentionally.
How do you know the difference?
When you choose to lie to your boss about being sick, and unable to come into work, it is an intentional sin. When you decide to go to bed with someone who is not your spouse, it is a deliberate sin.
When the Apostle Peter chose not to deny Christ, it was an intentional act. He had no desire to reject Him, and he believed he was strong enough to acknowledge Yeshua in front of everyone. When fear and the threat of torture got the best of him, he denied Yeshua. That was an unintentional sin.
What if you are guilty of intentional sin, but at the time you did not know it was wrong? Let’s say, for instance, you are one of the many millions of Christians who believe it is ok to divorce and remarry because of adultery or desertion. Or you are one of those who think the Shabbat is only for the Jews.
Why do you believe this?
Most of you believe these lies because you have never actually studied the Bible, and you build your entire theology on what your pastor says.
If you, on the other hand, started studying the Bible, you would soon see the Shabbat is an eternal commandment for all who believe in the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. And you would understand how the Bible says divorce and remarriage is adultery. If you are married to someone, you are stuck with that person for life.
Both these sins fall into the category of intentional crimes. You cant divorce accidentally and remarry someone, and you can’t accidentally forget to celebrate Shabbat.
On the other hand, if you did these sins out of ignorance, they become unintentional sins. But now that you know the truth, you know you are supposed to celebrate Shabbat and remarriage is adultery, you will be held responsible for what you know. If you choose to continue in those sins, they become intentional, and if you live a lifestyle of deliberate sins, the cross can no longer help you.
How would you describe the cross? By now I hope you would say that the cross is Yehovahs sacrifice for our intentional sins. If someone believes in the cross, they find the Son of Yehovah, Yeshua (Jesus), took upon Himself our punishment for our deliberate sins. When someone chooses to believe in the cross, they understand it is a gift, and they show their appreciation for the gift by choosing to live a law-abiding life from now on. At no time are we expected to become sinless, but the difference is that we can never decide to break Yehovahs laws. We will, on the other hand, sin unintentionally as long as we live, and the book of James says if we confess our sins and we repent of them, we can know He will forgive us.
How would you describe sin? Sin is breaking Gods laws, so a sinner is just another word for a criminal.
Next week we will try to answer the last question, how can God have a son?
Today it is Friday, and in a few hours from now, the Shabbat will begin at sundown. If you have accepted the cross, you will know the law says you are supposed to celebrate Shabbat. There are a ton of human-made rules about Shabbat, but only 1 rule in the law of Yehovah. We are never to obey human-made rules and traditions, only Gods laws.
Gods law says it is forbidden to work for money on the Shabbat or make others work for money. We are supposed to rest and do what we can do to make others rest. This is why you can’t do your groceries on Shabbat, so make sure to buy what you need today before the sunsets.
There are of course exceptions to this, in the Gospels Yeshua says that if we have a medical emergency or a medical condition that prevents us from doing certain things on the week we are allowed to break Shabbat. So if you need medications, you are allowed to break Shabbat. If it can wait until the sun sets tomorrow, it has to wait.
Do you need prayer? A prophecy? Counseling? It is free of charge, contact me on Messenger, and I will pray for you, prophecy to you or counsel you.
Yehovah bless you