Over the next several weeks we are going to follow the story line of Scripture from Creation to Jesus’ return in an effort to deepen our understanding of the Gospel and how Christians are to live after they have professed Christ as Lord and Savior. (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3)
Redemption and Reconciliation
The Continued Affect of Sin
After Adam and Eve left the garden, sin continued to affect them and their family. One of Adam and Eve’s sons — Cain — killed another son — Abel (Gen. 4). The corruption of sin didn’t stop with them, it only continued to grow until God decided to destroy the world with a flood and start over with Noah’s family (Gen. 6-9).
Even after God destroyed the world and started over with Noah, the corrupting power of sin still affected the people’s of the earth. They turned from God to themselves so much so that they attempted to make a name for themselves instead of making much of God (Gen. 11).
Clearly, Adam and Eve’s sin had affected the entire world. God, however, had made them a promise. He was going to deal with sin and Satan. He would do that through the Christ, the Messiah. We know Him as Jesus.
Waiting on Jesus
Jesus, however, didn’t show up for several thousand years. As we wait on Jesus, a number of important characters carry the narrative forward.
God establishes the nation of Israel through Abraham (Abram). In Genesis 12, God came to Abraham and asked him to leave his home and go to another country. A country he knew nothing about, but one God would direct him towards. Abraham trusted God. He packed everything up and started walking in the way the Lord directed him.
God then established a covenant with Abraham promising him that from his offspring would come the Savior — Jesus (Gen. 12:7, Gal. 3:16).
After Abraham and his family, comes Moses. Moses led the people of Israel out of captivity in Egypt in an event known as the Exodus (Exodus 12). After which, God established Moses as the leader of Israel. While Moses was leading the nation, God gave Israel the Law (The Ten Commandments and everything else in Leviticus and Deuteronomy). It made a way for them to have a relationship with God, but wasn’t sufficient to keep the people from sin.
Another important character is David. He was the example King of the nation of Israel. The one to whom all other kings were compared. Under his reign and rule the nation thrived and worshipped God.
Israel, however, didn’t continue to thrive and worship God after David died. Through a series of evil kings, the nation fell deeper and deeper into sin until God decided to punish them. Both the Northern Kingdom (Israel) and the Southern Kingdom (Judah) were captured and exiled from the Promised Land.
Finally, after years in exile, they were able to return and rebuild Jerusalem. After rebuilding Jerusalem, they waited for the Messiah (the Savior sent by God). Clearly, He was needed. No matter how many leaders came, Israel couldn’t be curbed from sin. Something else needed to be done in order to cause them to worship God in the way He directed and to repair their relationship with God.
Jesus Finally Comes Bringing Salvation
So several thousand years after God’s promise to Adam and Eve, Jesus came, lived a perfect life, and died on a cross. When He died on the cross, He took our punishment for us, acting as our substitute. God’s wrath was poured out on Him instead of being poured out on us.
Jesus’ death was necessary because our sin is what hinders our relationship with God. God is holy and we are not. He cannot have a relationship with someone who is not holy, who is a sinner. Just like Adam and Eve’s relationship with God was ruined by sin, so is our relationship with God. The only way He can have a relationship with us is if someone takes our sin from us and makes us holy. Jesus is that person. He is the one who takes our sin from us, places it on Himself. While at the same time, He places His righteousness on us. When that occurs, our relationship with God is restored. Instead of seeing a sinner, God sees a holy and righteous person.
All those who believe Jesus is their Savior and Lord, confess that they are sinners and turn to follow Jesus will be saved. Their relationship with God is repaired by Jesus.
- Did you realize Jesus was promised in the Old Testament?
- How does the Old Testament help you see the reason Jesus had to come?
- What is a substitute? Why is it important Jesus became our substitute?
- How can you become a believer?
Some posts’ structure influenced by Big Truths for Young Hearts by Bruce Ware