Storeroom Sermons of David Chadwell

God's Solution to the Problem of Sin

Once sin was an impossible problem for people. Why? There were only inadequate, temporary solutions for the problem. No one of himself or herself had the power to destroy sin. God's permanent solution had not yet come into existence, and humans were powerless to produce a permanent solution.

In early human history, people offered animal sacrifices to honor God. Though God was pleased with such sacrifices when they were offered for the right motive in the correct way, they were not permanent solutions. Regarding such sacrifices, Hebrews 10:4 says, For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.

Still later God made a covenant or agreement with Israel called the Law of Moses. In it the Jewish people were commanded to offer animal sacrifices at a specific place at a specific time. Those sacrifices included the sacrifice of atonement. Yet, not even it could permanently destroy sin for all people. Animal blood was still not a permanent solution. The writer of Hebrews said in Hebrews 10:1-3, For the Law, since it has only a shadow of the good things to come and not the very form of things, can never, by the same sacrifices which they offer continually year by year, make perfect those who draw near. Otherwise, would they not have ceased to be offered, because the worshipers, having once been cleansed, would no longer have had consciousness of sins? But in those sacrifices there is a reminder of sins year by year.

Mosaical animal sacrifices were just a shadow of the real solution that would permanently solve the problem of sin. Those animal sacrifices did not have the ability to make Israelite lives spiritually complete. Instead, those animal sacrifices served as a constant reminder that the problem of sin was not permanently resolved.

When the situation was correct, God introduced the permanent solution to sin. God's permanent solution to the problem of sin was not haphazard nor "spur of the moment." God worked on this permanent solution from the moment sin became a part of human existence in this world. God planned and worked throughout human history to make this permanent solution a reality.

To all who would accept God's solution, it was a permanent solution to the problem of sin, a permanent end to the problem. God provided that solution at enormous cost to Himself.

  1. Before we can appreciate the solution, we must understand the problem.

    1. The basic problem: justice had to be satisfied.
      Romans 3:21-26, 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.
      1. Sin in its rebellion against God was an injustice.
      2. To restore relationship with God, that injustice had to be addressed.
      3. Someone had to satisfy the penalty for the injustice of rebellion.
    2. The necessity of satisfying the injustice of sin created a real problem for God and humanity.
      1. The problem for humanity was not in paying the price for injustice, but of escaping the destructive consequences of injustice.
        1. Every person could pay for his or her own injustices.
        2. Yet, no person could pay for someone else's injustices.
        3. Humanity was not capable of producing a solution--all humanity could do was face the consequences of individual injustices.
      2. The problem for God was that He could not rightfully extend mercy until the injustice of rebellion was satisfied.
        1. Someone had to pay the consequences of unjust rebellion.
        2. Until the consequences of injustice were addressed, God was not free to permanently extend mercy.
        3. God could not ignore sin, pretend it did not exist, and remain true to Himself.
        4. For God to be God, the consequences of injustice must be paid.
    3. The problem of injustice could be solved if someone without sin paid the consequences of those who sinned.
      1. That is how God solved the problem.
      2. He created a permanent solution to sin in this way:
        1. God allowed His own son to come to this world and live as a human.
        2. Jesus, as a person, faced all our temptations and did not sin.
        3. Then Jesus died without sin to satisfy the consequences of our injustices.
        4. That death freed God to be permanently merciful to those who accepted Jesus' blood.
      3. Listen to scripture:
        Hebrews 4:14,15 Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weakness, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin.
        1 Peter 2:21-24 For you have been called for this purpose, since Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example for you to follow in His steps, who committed no sin, nor was any deceit found in His mouth; and while being reviled, He did not revile in return; while suffering, He uttered no threats, but kept entrusting Himself to Him who judges righteously; and He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed.
        2 Corinthians 5:21 He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.
      4. Jesus encountered the tests of temptation without sinning.
        1. He sinlessly gave his life for our failures.
        2. He actually had our sins placed on his body as he died.
        3. If we accept his sacrifice, we are freed from our sins because Jesus paid for them.

  2. In God's permanent solution to sin, Jesus is the Savior.

    1. Jesus is more than a good man, a help if we want him, a suggested improvement, or one good way to God--he is the Savior.
      1. Scripture never presents Jesus as the Christ with an attitude of indefiniteness.
      2. He is never presented as an optional way to God.
      3. He is the essential key to God's permanent solution to the problem of sin.
        1. He did live without sinning.
        2. He did die for human sin.
        3. He did carry our sins in his body as he died.
        4. Only he can destroy the sins of a person.
    2. If you feel that exaggerates Jesus' importance as Savior, listen to scripture:
      1. The evening before his death, Jesus made this statement:
        John 14:6, I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.
      2. Shortly after Jesus was presented to the Jews as the resurrected Christ, Peter made this statement:
        Acts 4:12, And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.
      3. Much later, Paul wrote:
        1 Timothy 2:5, For there is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, ...

  3. We also must understand that the only existing power that can permanently destroy human sin is Jesus' blood.

    1. Jesus' blood atones for human sin by satisfying the demands of justice.
      1. Paul made several statements about the power of Jesus' blood.
        Ephesians 1:7, In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace.
        Ephesians 2:13, But now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.
        Colossians 1:14, ... in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
        Romans 5:9, Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him.
      2. The writer of Hebrews said in Hebrews 13:12:
        Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people through His own blood, suffered outside the gate.
      3. The same writer says in Hebrews 13:20 that Jesus' blood was the blood of an eternal covenant--God's commitment in Jesus blood will not be withdrawn!
      4. John wrote in Revelation 1:5,
        ... from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To Him who loves us and released us from our sins by His blood—

    2. Without Jesus' blood there is no power to make human salvation possible.
      1. Jesus' blood:
        1. Redeems us or buys us back for the injustices against God that we commit.
        2. Gives all people the right to come near God.
        3. Justifies us.
        4. Makes us sanctified or holy.
        5. Frees us from our sins.
        6. Permits us to live under God's eternal commitment.
      2. There is no way to bypass the essential blood of Jesus!
        1. Those who appropriate Jesus' blood to their lives are saved.
        2. Those who reject Jesus' blood are not.
        3. The power of salvation lies in the atonement of Jesus' blood.

Transition: To me it seems evident that there is a critical question to be answered: how do we apply that blood to our lives?

  1. How can a sinner benefit from Jesus' blood by applying that blood to his or her life?

    1. May we let the Bible answer that question?
      1. When Peter preached the first sermon that declared the resurrected Jesus was God's Christ (Messiah), he made the listeners aware that they were guilty of killing God's own son.
        1. When many people believed what Peter said and were moved by his message, they felt the guilt of their horrible sin and knew they needed help.
        2. These people cried out, "Brethren, what shall we do?"
        3. Peter answer them in this way in Acts 2:38:
          Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
        4. When they realized their sin, they wanted and needed forgiveness.
        5. The only permanent solution was remission of sin.
        6. Peter told them how to remove sin--even when the sin involved killing God's son.
        7. He said they needed to repent and be baptized.
      2. When Paul related his conversion in Acts 22, he said there was a moment when he knew sin needed to be removed from his life.
        1. He was going to Damascus to arrest Jewish Christians and return them to Jerusalem for trial.
        2. He had long despised Jesus and declared Jesus to be an impostor.
        3. When the bright light engulfed him, the Lord Jesus instructed him where to go in Damascus.
        4. There he fasted and prayed for 3 days and nights (Acts 9:9)
        5. Ananias came to him and explained God had a special purpose for him.
        6. Then Ananias made this statement:
          Acts 22:16, Now why do you delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on His name.
          1. Please note the things that did not remove his sins: a miracle, fasting and prayer, an actual talk with the resurrected Lord.
          2. Two things were essential: faith in the resurrected Jesus, a rejection of rebelling against Jesus--nothing could be effective without these!
          3. However, the last expression of faith in Jesus and the act of total rejection of sin were expressed by washing sin away in baptism.
      3. Peter wrote in 1 Peter 3:21, 22:
        Corresponding to that, baptism now saves you—not the removal of dirt from the flesh, but an appeal to God for a good conscience—through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, who is at the right hand of God, having gone into heaven, after angels and authorities and powers had been subjected to Him.
        1. Peter wrote to Christians urging them to remember their commitment.
        2. They committed to Jesus when they were baptized.
        3. They were not baptized to take a bath.
        4. They were baptized to bring God their good conscience.
        5. Just like Noah built an ark and entered it so he could be rescued by water, they entered "the ark" God built in Jesus' resurrection so they could be delivered from the destruction of sin.
    2. What possible connection could there be between baptism, Jesus' blood, and forgiveness of sin?
      1. We have seen the connection between Jesus' blood and forgiveness.
      2. What is the connection between baptism and Jesus' blood?
      3. Let the Bible show the connection:
        Romans 6:1-4, What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase? May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it? Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life.
        1. Baptism is a memorial that permits the person to commit to Jesus by dying with Jesus.
        2. Paul was writing to Christians explaining why they could not deliberately continue a life of sin.
        3. Why could they not? Because they knowingly made a commitment!
        4. When? When they were willingly baptized.
        5. They were buried just like Jesus was buried, and they we resurrected to a new existence just like Jesus was resurrected to a new existence.
        6. Because they died with Jesus, they contacted Jesus' blood.
    3. We must emphasize it is not just the act of baptism that destroys sin.
      1. The baptized person must believe Jesus is the Christ.
      2. He or she must reject known sins by repenting.
      3. The act must be based on the person's decision because he or she wants to commit to Christ.
      4. It must be a transition in which the person chooses to leave known sins to commit to the resurrected Jesus.
    4. Baptism begins a lifetime of commitment to Jesus Christ wherein one rejoices in his or her continued forgiveness as he or she seeks to serve the purposes of Jesus Christ.

We owe God an enormous debt of gratitude for providing us the permanent, continuing solution for the problem of sin. We can express our confidence in Jesus and our gratitude to God by accepting the solution.

Have you solved the problem of sin in your life?

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