The Great Exchange

It was not nails that held Jesus to that wretched cross; it was his unqualified resolution, out of love for his Father, to do his Father’s will—and, within that framework, it was his love for sinners like me.
— D. A. Carson

What is perfect? In ice-skating, it is a “10.” In baseball, it is batting 1000. In school, it is a score of 100 on every test. In God’s eyes, it is conforming perfectly to God’s standards—no slip-ups and no deviations! "Perfect" is Jesus—righteous in every way, always measuring up. 

What is imperfect? In ice-skating, it is one fall on the ice. In baseball, it is one strikeout. In school, it is one incorrect answer on a test. In God’s eyes, it is one sin. "Imperfect" . . . that would be me — unrighteous in my ways, never measuring up, not even on my best days.

That is why I need Jesus. That is why I need the cross. Jesus' perfection and my imperfection met there. Peter tells us about it:

For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit.
— 1 Peter 3:18

Peter describes The Great Exchange.  He tells us about Jesus, the righteous one who perfectly conformed to God’s standards, suffering the wrath of God for sins. That little word for means "on behalf of."

The righteous for the unrighteous -- Jesus for thief on the cross.
The righteous for the unrighteous -- Jesus for me.
The righteous for the unrighteous -- Jesus for you!

The cross is a symbol of great love and great sacrifice! It is the symbol of The Great Exchange for every person who believes in Jesus.

In exchange for his death, we get life!

For just a minute think about where you would be without the love of God and the cross of Christ. Here is a start . . .

  • Dead in trespasses and sins (Ephesians 2:1)
  • Without God and without hope in the world (Ephesians 2:12)
  • Under the wrath of God (John 3:36)
  • Missing out on life to the full (John 10:10)
  • Living without his peace and the confidence of his help (John 16:33)

As D.A. Carson notes, it was Christ's unqualified resolution -- out of obedience to God and his love for you -- that held him there. How does one respond to such love? With belief, obedience, and eternal thanks.

Join us tonight at 7:00 p.m. at Spanish River Church for our Good Friday Service as we reflect, worship, and give thanks for God's great exchange on the cross.