Jesus Suffers to Save the World: Focus on the Apostles’ Creed Part 3

We continue our deconstructing of the Apostles’ Creed — The Core of Our Beliefs. Today we talk about historical record. Jesus’ trial before Pontius Pilot, the Roman Governor at the time. There are some powerful words in this next section that we take for granted. Let’s stop and ponder them…

The Apostles’ Creed cont…

For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilot,
he suffered, died and was buried,
and rose again on the third day
in fulfillment of the Scriptures

The Apostles’ Creed

“For our sake!” God loved the world so much that He did not want us to perish. So, He sent His one and only Son to take on ALL our sins on the cross.

Related: Why Did Jesus Have to Die?

Again, I thank Matt Chandler for his wonderful study on the Apostles’ Creed in the Bible App

Pontius Pilate was the governor of Judea from A.D. 26 to 36. This mention of Pilate in the Apostles’ Creed—Jesus “suffered under Pontius Pilate; was crucified, dead, and buried”—may seem odd, but it highlights Christ’s suffering as a historical event. The eternal Son entered our world, and a human court convicted Him of crimes He didn’t commit. This event really happened. Jesus, fully human, experienced real suffering at a specific point in history.

The crucifixion was the ultimate display of human animosity toward God’s authority in our lives. Our sinful hearts rejected Christ, in spite of all His displays of love, because we hated His claim of lordship. If He’s the rightful King over our lives, we must confess and repent of our rebellion, surrendering our lives in submission to His rule. But instead, we demanded that Jesus be executed.

God wasn’t surprised by the world’s hatred and rejection of Jesus. And Jesus didn’t suffer and die in a way that was out of His control.

Matt Chandler, LifeWay.com

Before the crucifixion, Jesus told His disciples…

“No one can take my life from me. I sacrifice it voluntarily. For I have the authority to lay it down when I want to and also to take it up again. For this is what my Father has commanded.”

‭‭John‬ ‭10:18‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Like in the Garden

Jesus’ death and resurrection changed everything. We can now have a right relationship with God again. Our disobedience, our sin, and our rebellion as His enemies are all forgiven. No amount of right or wrong morality, good or bad religious behavior could ever make us right before God. So as He did in the garden after that first sin, God stepped in, sought us, and called us to receive the sacrifice He provided. But the sacrifice of Jesus is infinitely greater than any other offering.

Matt Chandler, LifeWay.com

God Sought Adam and Eve After they Disobeyed Him

When the cool evening breezes were blowing, the man and his wife heard the Lord God walking about in the garden. So they hid from the Lord God among the trees. Then the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?”

10 He replied, “I heard you walking in the garden, so I hid. I was afraid because I was naked.”

11 “Who told you that you were naked?” the Lord God asked. “Have you eaten from the tree whose fruit I commanded you not to eat?”

12 The man replied, “It was the woman you gave me who gave me the fruit, and I ate it.”

13 Then the Lord God asked the woman, “What have you done?”

“The serpent deceived me,” she replied. “That’s why I ate it.”

‭‭Genesis‬ ‭3:8-13‬ ‭NLT‬‬

I love that scene! God scolds Adam. Adam them puts the blame on the woman that God gave him. She, in turn, blames the devil. What’s really cool is that Jesus wins victory of Satan in the end!

The Resurrection is Unique to Christianity

The resurrection truly makes the Christian faith unique. Throughout history many people have died for their beliefs. Countless martyrs have willingly and even eagerly given their lives for their faith, refusing to compromise their convictions because they were certain the reward for faithfulness was greater than any suffering they endured. The difference between Jesus and any guru, prophet, teacher, leader, or hero is that He was the only Son of God and didn’t stay dead. Jesus not only suffered and died but also rose from His burial place, left the tomb empty, and appeared before hundreds of eyewitnesses. The resurrection of Jesus is not only miraculous but also evidence that only He has authority over life and death and the ability to forgive sin. Because Christ isn’t dead, we can be confident that all our sins have been forgiven.

Matt Chandler, LifeWay.com

See that! Only Jesus has the authority to forgive sin! Not a priest, not even the Pope.

“God so Rich in Mercy…”

“Once you were dead because of your disobedience and your many sins. You used to live in sin, just like the rest of the world, obeying the devil—the commander of the powers in the unseen world. He is the spirit at work in the hearts of those who refuse to obey God. All of us used to live that way, following the passionate desires and inclinations of our sinful nature. By our very nature we were subject to God’s anger, just like everyone else. But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved us so much, that even though we were dead because of our sins, he gave us life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!)”

‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭2:1-5‬ ‭NLT‬‬

“In Fulfillment of the Scriptures”

I’ve written several articles on Old Testament Bible Prophecy of Jesus and His crucifixion. The best prophecy is in Isaiah 53. Here’s a part of it…

“When he sees all that is accomplished by his anguish, he will be satisfied. And because of his experience, my righteous servant will make it possible for many to be counted righteous, for he will bear all their sins. I will give him the honors of a victorious soldier, because he exposed himself to death. He was counted among the rebels. He bore the sins of many and interceded for rebels.”

‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭53:11-12‬ ‭NLT‬‬

More Old Testament Prophecies about Jesus…

Jesus suffered and died for our sake! He paid the ultimate price so we wouldn’t have to!

Catholics, think about this — if purgatory exists, the Jesus died for nothing.

If you truly want to be born again and have the assurance of salvation and a 1-way, non-stop ticket to Heaven and that you won’t be left behind at the Rapture, this is what you have to do…

Believe. Repent. Be Baptized. Receive the Holy Spirit.

Pray this prayer humbly and wholeheartedly…

“Dear Lord Jesus, I know I am a sinner. I believe You died for my sins. Please forgive me. Right now, I turn from my sins and open the door of my heart and my life to you. I confess You as my personal Lord and Savior. I surrender my whole life to you and I will follow you for the rest of my life. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”

Jesus Christ is coming back soon! Are you ready?

Soli Deo Gloria — To God Alone Be the Glory!

Top picture: Munkácsy Christ before Pilate, 1881, Public Domain.

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