Chapter 8, Verses 28-30 Part 18
In this essay, we will consider God's wrathful judgment of sin and what Christ suffered for us on the cross.
According to the scriptures, "every sin and disobedience receives a just recompense of reward." There is no such thing as a sin going unpunished. God is just. Being just he "must" bring to judgment and to the execution of judgment every sin; otherwise God would not be just. Now we may ask ourselves, "What is the penalty for sin? Several verses of scripture speak to this question:
a. Rom. 6:23 ‑ "For the wages of sin is death..."
b. II Thes. 1:8, 9 ‑ "In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power..."
c. Matt. 25:41 ‑ "Then shall he say also to them on his left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels."
d. II Pet. 2:17 ‑ "These are wells without water, clouds that are carried with a tempest: to whom the mist of darkness is reserved for ever."
e. Jude 13 ‑ "Raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame; wandering stars, to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness for ever."
f. Rev. 20:10, 14, 15 ‑ "And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever...And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire."
g. Lk. 16:23, 24 ‑ "And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame."
From the above verses we make the following observations:
a. Eternal death is the consequence of sin.
b. The punishment of sin includes everlasting separation from the presence of the Lord and the glory of his power.
c. The punishment of sin includes being cast into the blackness of darkness forever.
d. The punishment of sin includes eternal torments and being cast into the lake of fire, for ever.
Next, we may ask ourselves, Did Jesus suffer all that the punishment of our sins required to satisfy God's wrathful and righteous judgment? In the garden when Jesus was looking forward to the things that he would suffer said in Matt. 26:38, "My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death." Also in Lk. 22:44 it was written of Jesus that he was "in an agony" and it was said of him that "his
sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground." These things were written of Jesus when he looked forward to the horrible scene of God's wrathful judgment of sin at the cross. According to the scriptures beginning at the sixth hour of the day when Jesus was crucified there was darkness over all the earth for three hours and it was said that the "sun was darkened." God had turned out the lights for
the punishment of sin.
Abraham was given a glimpse of this scene as we read in Gen. 15:12, "and, lo, an horror of great darkness fell upon him." Likewise one of the ten judgments that fell upon Egypt was darkness as described in Ex. 10:21, 22, "And the Lord said unto Moses, Stretch out thine hand toward heaven, that there may be darkness over all the land of Egypt, even darkness which may be felt. And Moses
stretched forth his hand toward heaven; and there was a thick darkness in all the land of Egypt three days." I am convinced that the darkness of God's judgment of sin is more than just natural darkness, but actually a darkness on the very soul of the one who is being punished.
Next, we see Jesus separated from the glory of the Father as he cries out, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?"
Isaiah prophesied of the sufferings of Jesus at the cross when he wrote in Isa 53:4, 5, "Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed."
It is abundantly clear that the sufferings of Jesus far exceeded the things man placed upon him in nailing him to the cross, beating him, ridiculing him and spitting upon him, mocking him, and plaiting a crown of thorns on his head. These things didn't redeem us from our sins. It is the sufferings of Jesus under the wrathful judgment of God during the three hours of darkness that satisfied
God's wrathful judgment because of our sins. I am convinced that none of us for whom Christ died will ever fully comprehend the depth, nor width, nor breadth, nor height of the sufferings Jesus suffered on our account. He suffered and died that we wouldn't have to suffer an eternal punishment of sin and that we would be made fit subjects for heaven's glory world!
In our next essay, we will consider the consequences of Christ's sufferings on the behalf of the elect.