The Death of a Son

I was reading an article in the news recently about a father who had killed his two sons and then took his own life. I couldn’t help but feel disgusted, disturbed, and saddened by the selfishness of this man. Even though I’m not a dad, I can’t fathom the idea of taking the life of my child. I’m sure you are probably thinking the same thing! We all wonder to ourselves when we read, hear, or see the news of a murder, “How could someone do that?” or “What could drive a person to do that?”

Those are the same questions many of us have asked about Jesus Christ. Why did He die? How could the people murder such a man, an innocent man? I believe these are probably some of the most important questions anyone could ask when it comes to the Christian faith. What was the point of Jesus’ death? Why did He have to die? Yet, another major question that is often forgotten to be asked is, “Who planned the death of Jesus?” Before we can answer the “why” I think we need to answer the foundational question “who.”

Was it the plan of the Romans? The cross was their form of humiliation, torture, and death. Not to mention, they were the ones who scourged and drove the nails into the hands and feet of Jesus. Could it have been the Jews? They were the ones that plotted against Jesus. They caused the riots and in the end, they made the decision to place Jesus under arrest in exchange for a highly violent prisoner. The reason this question is so foundational is because the answer to that question is also beginning of understanding why did Jesus had to die. Let’s look to some Scripture to find our answer.

“But the Lord was pleased to crush Him, putting Him to grief, if He would render Himself as a guilt offering, He will see His offspring, He will prolong His days.” (Isaiah 53:10) This verse is prophesying about Jesus! After reading through it I have to ask, who was pleased to crush Him, to put Him to grief as a guilt offering? It was the Lord, God the Father. It was His plan to murder His only Son. Why in the world would a Father plan on having his Son killed? Who would do such a thing? The answer is a loving and just God.

“But now apart from the Law the righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; for there is no distinction; for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus; whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed; for the demonstration, I say, of His righteousness at the present time, so that He would be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.” Romans 3:21-26

Wayne Grudem states in his book, Systematic Theology, “…the atonement was not absolutely necessary, but, as a ‘consequence’ of God’s decision to save some human beings, the atonement was absolutely necessary.” God never had to save people from their sins, yet, because He is a loving God, He desired to save people and in order to do that someone had to take the consequences of sin. The wrath of God was sin’s consequence and God would not be able to ignore such a consequence. Therefore, out of love God planned the death of His own Son to bring about His justice, and it was the only way. We are now justified because of the love of a Father through the death of His only Son.

If you find yourself asking questions about the death of Jesus I want to encourage you to keep asking and seeking answers according to Scripture. This blog is one of the many reasons why Jesus had to come to die. Over the next month, I am looking forward to reading more blogs about this topic and what it brings to those who believe.

I’ll leave you with a quote by John Piper from his book, Fifty Reason Why Jesus Came to Die, “His aim, through evil and suffering, was to destroy evil and suffering…God meant to show the world that there is no sin and no evil too great that God cannot bring from it everlasting righteousness and joy. The very suffering that we caused became the hope of our salvation.”


Ryan Thomason has been around Transform Student Ministries for many years. Ryan is a former Boot Camper, Staffer, and Intern.

 

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03.05.12

[…] of blog posts, we have been discussing why Jesus had to die and why He is the only way to God.  Ryan pointed out that the cross was the only way for God to satisfy His wrath against sinners while also […]

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