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Salvation by Substitution 1

As we celebrated the Lord's supper here at Grace Bible Church in Port Charlotte, Florida, I got the
opportunity to share a bit about our salvation, that which has a past, present, and future tense to it, as
we are being saved by the power of God in 1Cor.1:18. And it does not take long for the first gospel
writer Matthew to mention it in 1Cor.1:21,”Jesus will save His people from their sins. It will be a work
of sovereign grace that we receive this salvation, and this by faith in what He has done for us. We see it
clearly stated in Eph.2:8-9, this will not be something(salvation) that we will seek for on our own
initiative, but One has come to seek and to save that which was lost. (Luke 19:10) That word for lost is
actually the Greek word that coincides with perishing. Jesus often uses it in places like Luke 13, in that
unless men repent, they will perish. And remember the prodigal son, He once was lost, Luke 15, He was
perishing in the direction he was going.
There is One who can and has turned around many who were perishing, but are now being saved, past,
present, and future. Salvation from our sins is at stake, but how can that be accomplished? Matthew
states Jesus will have something to do with it. We need a Savior, who can it be, who or what has to be
done, and when will it be accomplished? Way back in Exodus 12, some 3,000 years ago, in an event
called the Passover, part of the 10th and final plague, the Israelites are instructed to take an unblemished
male lamb, kill it on a particular night at twilight, and then take some of the blood and put it on the two
doorposts and lintel of the house in which they eat it. The Lord will then go through the land of Egypt
and strike down all the firstborn in the land, both man and beast. But the blood that is on those houses
where they live will be passed over and no plague will befall them to destroy them. See Exodus 12 for
the whole history of this first Passover.
But now Jesus enters the world in what we call the Incarnation, God becoming flesh, the infleshing of
God you could say literally, and dwelt among us. The wages of sin is death, Rom.6:23 states, but it goes
on to say that the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. John 1:29 gives us all a hint at
what is the Father's plan for salvation, John the Baptist states, “Behold the Lamb of God who takes away
the sin of the world.” This time, God will provide the Lamb, it will be slaughtered in the place of sheep,
bulls, and goats, for it is impossible for them to take away our sins. (Heb.10:4) 1Cor.5:7 Christ our
Passover has been sacrificed. In His infinite wisdom God devised a way in which He would be both just
and merciful. Jesus Christ would be that Passover Lamb. Sin must be punished. It cannot be swept
under the rug. God is the One most offended in any sin. David said in Psa.51:4, “Against You, You only
have I sinned.” In other words, though David sinned against many people, God was the One he offended
most. It is like that in all sin. Rom.3:25,God displayed publicly(Jesus) as a propitiation(wrath satisfying
sacrifice) in His blood through faith.(This sacrifice for us is appropriated to us by faith) This was to
demonstrate His righteousness because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously
So in essence, God can say, “When I see His blood, I will pass over you. Jesus sacrificing Himself for us
comes across clearly in verses like Isa.53:6, 1Pet.2:24, and Rom.8:3 to mention but three of the many
there are. Jesus says in Luke 9:44, The Son of Man is going to be delivered into the hands of man. Mark
15:15, Pilate delivered Him over to be crucified. And Rom.8:32, He(the Father) who did not spare His
own Son but delivered Him up for us all.” So, God delivered, Pilate delivered, and Christ delivered
Himself for our sins. The great English Puritan John Flavel says, “In God, this deliverance was an act of
highest justice, in Pilate an act of greatest wickedness, in Christ it was an act of wonderful obedience.

Let us praise God for this indescribable gift of Jesus Christ, our vicarious sacrifice, One who does all
things well!

Elder Randy Slak