I remember it like it was yesterday.
Our phone conversation was brief but poignant. I shared the horrific details of my situation through tears.
All she said was, “I’ll be over soon.”
In my moment of deepest need and greatest hurt, my friend came to me. She left what she was doing and made her way to my house to comfort and encourage me. I had nothing to offer her, nothing to give, and little to say.
But, she showed up – just when I needed her the most. (And, she brought flowers!)
Similarly, when we were in our place of greatest need, Jesus stepped out of heaven and came down to earth for us.
We had nothing to offer, nothing to give, and little to say.
But Jesus showed up – just when we needed Him the most. (And, He brought hope!)
- Why did Jesus have to come to earth?
- Couldn’t He have saved us from up in heaven?
- Why did He have to become fully man – be born, live, die, and be raised again?
In studying these questions, I’ve discovered 7 reasons that Jesus chose to come down to earth and live as a man.
1} Jesus had to become fully man in order that He might be our representative.
“Jesus was our representative and obeyed for us where Adam had failed and disobeyed. Jesus had to be a man in order to be our representative and obey in our place.” (Grudem, page 540)
Romans 5:18-19 puts it this way,
“Therefore, as through one man’s offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life. For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man’s obedience many will be made righteous.” (NKJV)
Indeed, Jesus stood in place for us and did for us what we were unable to do for ourselves.Jesus stood in place for us and did for us what we were unable to do for ourselves. Click To Tweet
Jesus = Our Representative
2} Jesus had to become fully human to be our sacrificial substitute.
Hebrews 2:16-17 tells us,
“Therefore, it was necessary for him to be made in every respect like us, his brothers and sisters, so that he could be our merciful and faithful High Priest before God. Then he could offer a sacrifice that would take away the sins of the people.” (NLT)
“If Jesus had not been a man, he could not have died in our place and paid the penalty that was due to us.” (Grudem, page 540)
I think of the words to the familiar Christian song, “Jesus, Messiah.”
He became sin, who knew no sin
That we might become His righteousness
He humbled himself and carried the cross
Blessed redeemer, Emmanuel
The rescue for sinners, the ransom from Heaven
Jesus Messiah, Lord of all
Jesus = Our Sacrificial Substitute
3} Jesus had to become fully man to be the One to mediate between God and us.
“Because we were alienated from God by sin, we needed someone to come between God and ourselves and bring us back to Him.” (Grudem, page 541)
According to 1 Timothy 2:5,
“There is one God and one Mediator who can reconcile God and humanity—the man Christ Jesus.” (NLT)
Jesus = Our Great Reconciler.
4} Jesus had to become fully human in order to fulfill God’s original plan for man to rule over creation.
Ephesians 1:22 shares,
“God has put all things under the authority of Christ and has made him head over all things for the benefit of the church.” (NLT)
He came to rule over all creation – because we could not. Adam and Eve failed in the Garden of Eden to rule over everything.
The Lord Jesus came to make things right again by fulfilling our original purpose.Jesus came to make things right again by fulfilling God's original plan for man. Click To Tweet
Jesus = Our Purpose Fulfiller
5} Jesus had to become fully man to be our example and our model to follow.
In 1 Peter 2:21, we read,
“For God called you to do good, even if it means suffering, just as Christ suffered for you. He is your example, and you must follow in his steps.” (NLT)
He’s our example in life and in death – our perfect example. Without Him, we do not have a true model to follow.
Jesus = Our Perfect Model
6} Jesus became fully man so that He could be the pattern for our redeemed bodies.
We are being made like Him, and we will be like Him one day.
According to 2 Corinthians 3:18,
“So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image.” (NLT)
Jesus = Our Pattern for Redemption.
7} Jesus became fully man that He might be able to sympathize as our High Priest.
In Hebrews 2:17-18, we read,
“Therefore, in all things He had to be made like His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful High Priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. For in that He Himself has suffered, being tempted, He is able to aid those who are tempted.”
If He had not been a man, He would not have been able to experience what it was like to go through temptations and struggles as a human being. However, His time on earth has made Him completely able to sympathize with our experiences.
Jesus endured hunger, pain, sorrow, anguish, hurt, rejection, and so much more.
Jesus = Our Sympathetic High Priest
What does it matter to us??
Why does it make a difference that Jesus is our:
- Sacrificial Substitute
- Great Reconciler
- Purpose Fulfiller
- Perfect Model
- Pattern for Redemption
- Sympathetic High Priest
What should these truths cause us to do?
First, knowing all of this should make us grateful for Jesus’s willingness to come down to earth and take on the form of a human.
Are you grateful for Jesus and all that He did for you?
Second, all of this should cause us to praise Him. How can we not be thankful?
Have You thanked Him today for coming down to earth for you?
Third, knowing what Jesus has done for us should cause us to want to tell others about Him.
We should be so full of gratitude for our Savior that it oozes and overflows out of our lives.
Are you telling those around you about what Jesus has done in your life?
A Word from the Past
Charles Spurgeon was a very powerful and popular British pastor and author from the 1800’s. He was known as the “Prince of Preachers.”
Additionally, He is well-known for having a great passion for sharing Christ with others.
Here are just two quotes to give us a little taste of his love for souls.
“I would sooner bring one sinner to Jesus Christ than unravel all the mysteries of the divine Word, for salvation, is the one thing we are to live for.”
“If sinners will be damned, at least let them leap to Hell over our bodies. And if they will perish, let them perish with our arms about their knees, imploring them to stay. If Hell must be filled, at least let it be filled in the teeth of our exertions, and let not one go there unwarned and unprayed for.”
Closing Prayer –
“Father, enable us to better grasp the magnitude of what Jesus has done for us. Make us more grateful and more open with others about these gifts. I’m so thankful that You sent Your son to become our Representative, our Sacrificial Substitute, our Great Reconciler, our Purpose Fulfiller, our Perfect Model, our Pattern for Redemption, and our Sympathetic High Priest. We are most blessed to have such a Savior.”Father, help us to grasp the magnitude of what Jesus has done for us. Click To Tweet
Would you like more encouragement in your devotional life?
Here’s a new resource we’ve created – just for you!
Join us as we take a clear and practical look at some of the most basic and essential tenants of the Christian life – the doctrines of the faith.
Each week, we will highlight and explain a core doctrine. Then, we will pose the question, “Why does this matter to you and me?”
You can catch all of this year’s “Delight in Doctrine” posts by clicking HERE.
For the purposes of the study, our main texts will be first, the Bible, of course, and Wayne Grudem’s classic, Systematic Theology: An Introduction to Biblical Doctrine.
It is our prayer that by the end of 2017, we will all find more delight in understanding what we believe and why we believe it.
“…And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.” Luke 10:27 (ESV)
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