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Scripture-Study List: Christ’s Role in God’s Plan
The Old-Testament prophet Isaiah foresaw Christ’s great atoning sacrifice, by which He would pay for the sins of the world. Thus Christ is central to God’s plan; by freeing us from sin, He makes it possible for us to return to the Father.
- But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.
- All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.
- He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.
- He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken.
- And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth.
- Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.
- He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.
- Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.
When an angel appeared to Joseph (Jesus’ adopted father) to announce his son’s coming birth, he proclaimed that Jesus would save the repentant from their sins.
- And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.
Using the symbolism of the Last Supper to describe His atoning sacrifice, Christ explained that He would pay the price for our sins, making forgiveness possible.
- For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.
The apostle Paul also emphasized Christ’s role in God’s plan: Christ died for all of us that we might be forgiven of our sins and return to the Father.
- For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.
- But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
- Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.
- For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.
- And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.
The New-Testament book of Hebrews explains that Christ bore the sins of the repentant, allowing them to receive salvation.
- So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.
The book of Hebrews also explains that through Christ’s sacrifice we can be perfected, suggesting that it is only through His sacrifice that continued progression, the very purpose of God’s plan, is possible.
- By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
- And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins:
- But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God;
- From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool.
- For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.
The apostle Paul also explained that Christ’s role in God’s plan was to give Himself for our sins.
- Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father:
The apostle John explained that through Christ’s sacrifice, we can be forgiven of our sins, thus allowing us to continue to progress spiritually despite our spiritual immaturity.
1 John 1:7:
- But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin.
John explained elsewhere the same principle: Christ paid for the sins of the world. We can take advantage of that atonement if we keep His commandments and exercise faith in Him.
1 John 2:2-5:
- And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for our’s only, but also for the sins of the whole world.
- And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments.
- He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.
- But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.
The apostle Peter also taught that through the sacrifice of Christ we can be redeemed from sin.
1 Peter 1:18-19:
- Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;
- But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:
The apostle Peter taught elsewhere the same principle: Christ, who was Himself sinless, took upon Himself our sins that we might be spiritually healed.
1 Peter 2:21-25:
- For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:
- Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth:
- Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously:
- Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.
- For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.
The apostle John likewise explained that Christ overcame our sins and made our continued progression possible, on condition of our own personal effort.
- And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation;
- And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall reign on the earth.
The New Testament makes clear Christ’s role in God’s plan. Through faith in Christ and dedication to His teachings, we can receive eternal life.
- For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Jesus Christ Himself explained that He would serve to bridge the gap between men and God.
- Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
The apostle Paul echoed that same teaching: Jesus Christ bridges the gap.
1 Timothy 2:5-6:
- For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;
- Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.
The apostle Paul taught the same principle elsewhere: through Christ’s sacrifice we are reconciled with God despite our imperfections.
2 Corinthians 5:15-18:
- And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again.
- Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more.
- Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
- And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;