Why Did Jesus Die?

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Why Did Jesus Die?

In this month’s series, Speaking of Jesus, we’re moving through the life of Jesus and learning the purpose and power behind each aspect of his time on Earth.  This week, we’re examining the greater purpose behind Jesus’ death.


More Than Rhetoric

When we examine this question of “Why did Jesus Die?” it’s easy, especially after spending some time around Christian rhetoric, to recite the Sunday-school answer of “to die for my sins and to give me eternal life,” and move on with our everyday activities.  And while this statement is true, merely believing it to be true in a theological sense without it impacting us intimately does a disservice to the power of the deeper, richer reality of Jesus sacrificing himself for our sakes. 

Through His death, Jesus provides forgiveness, freedom, and eternal life.  Let that soak in for a moment.  



Eternal Life.  

The magnitude of these statements are literally a matter of life and death, as death was the price Jesus paid to give us the gift of life.


Jesus Died to Provide Forgiveness

“He forgives all my sins and heals all my disease” (Pslam 103:3, NLT).

Through His death, Jesus cleanses each of us of our sins.  And just like the washing of his disciples’ feet, the cleansing process is not so much a generic blanket of grace covering humanity as a whole as it is an intimate renewal.  Jesus takes our sore, dirty, blistered feet, caked with the dust of our past and the paths we’ve strayed onto, and washes them with His own hands.  

Through His death, Jesus bears all of the world’s sins and gives Himself up for each individual who would ever commit those sins.  This forgiveness is both entirely exhaustive and intensely intimate.  Jesus himself, as He died on the cross summed it up with three of the most powerful words ever uttered “It is finished.”


Jesus Died to Provide Freedom

“He was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins.  He was beaten, so we could be whole. We was whipped so we could be healed.  All of us, like sheep, have strayed away.  We have left GOD’s paths to follow our own. Yet the LORD laid on him the sins of us all” (Isaiah 53:5-6, NLT).  

As this passage lays out, the death of Jesus set us free from four things.  First, he was “pierced for our rebellion,” or the moments when we choose our own way over the will of GOD for our lives.  Second, we are freed from our sins, the weight of which “crushed” Him, and we carried them all with each one of us individually in mind.  Third, we are free from our shortcomings, or where we feel incomplete.  These are the lies we believe about us, the ways we see ourselves as something less than GOD’s design for us.  Regardless of the source – ourselves, the enemy, society –  Jesus frees us from these insecurities and fears.  Finally, we are free from our sicknesses.  Whether it be a physical, emotional, relational, or spiritual sense of sickness in our system, GOD frees us from these poisons from our lives and draws us to Him.


Jesus Died to Provide Eternal Life

“I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one can snatch them away from me” (John 10:28, NLT).  

Through accepting forgiveness and choosing to live in freedom everyday, we are graciously given access to eternal life.  As Christ died for us, He provided the means to return to life as it was designed to be, as eternal life walking with GOD.  Eternal life is more than simply avoiding hell or getting into heaven – it is experiencing the love of GOD and the beauty of a deeply personal relationship with our Creator.  Moreover, we are able to bring heaven to earth by choosing to walk with GOD in the garden of our hearts.  

Only though Christ paying the debt we could never make good on, can we truly experience the love and joy of the LORD in this life and one day enter into the gates of heaven when this mortal life is spent, knowing that this eternal home is where we belonged all along.  

Why did Jesus die?  For us.  Our Forgiveness.  Our Freedom. Our Eternal Life.  

As we move towards Easter Sunday, let us reflect more deeply on the true meaning behind Jesus’ death.  Let us remember His sacrifices and all that He provides for us through His scars and His blood.  Let us celebrate forgiveness, live in freedom, and enjoy eternal life even as we live on Earth.

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