Our Need for a Substitute

The prophet, Hosea, spoke to the nation of Israel at a time when sin and rebellion against God was in full-swing.  Various kings led the people into idolatry, child sacrifice to false deities, and other debauched acts.  When Hosea arrived on scene to prophesy to the people, Israel was about to be judged for its sin -- via exile to Babylon.

Hosea's words in 8:13 are significant: "I will hold my people accountable for their sins, and I will punish them."  While this passage is directed to Israel (and not you, me, America, etc.), it is, in fact, indicative of God's heart.  Make no mistake: whether this is about someone else in another time and context, God hates sin -- mine, yours, all of it!  Sin will be punished, and people will be held accountable by God Himself.

This ought to inspire us to ask the question: "Then who can escape God's wrath?"  We have all sinned (Romans 3:23), and therefore we are all deserving of the judgment of God.  So who can escape it?  The answer is plain and simple: NOBODY

That is -- unless there is another plan; a substitute.  Unless someone who does NOT deserve to be punished for sin intervenes in judgment in our place, and takes upon him- or herself self our punishment, then we surely stand our just desserts for sin.  This was the eager expectation and hope of the Old Covenant saints, those who hoped for a once-and-for-all redeemer -- Someone who would save them from their sin.

Enter: Jesus Christ.  The cross is what WE deserve, yet it's what Jesus suffered -- IN OUR PLACE.  Sin is held accountable for you and for me on the Cross of Jesus Christ, our once-and-for-all Redeemer.  Forgiveness of sin simply requires our faith to be placed on Jesus, and Jesus alone as our substitute.  "For salvation is found in none other than Jesus Christ; there is no other name under heaven given to us by which we must be saved" (Acts 4:12).

1 comment:

  1. Thank God for providing a substitute!