The Bible says, “Jesus bore our sins IN HIS OWN BODY ON THE TREE” (1 Peter 2:24). The lacerations that came from the beating Jesus endured, the nails that pierced his hands and feet, the crown of thrones placed on his head, and the spear driven into his side; was the punishment he endured for our sins. This punishment was inflicted on Jesus by the hands of sinful men, and this is the revelation that comes forth in the New Testament.
Peter does not say, “Jesus bore our sins in his spirit,” but rather, “in his body.”
Within the context of Peter’s description of Jesus bearing our sins, he tells us that Jesus suffered wrongfully while entrusting himself to God who judges righteously.
Someone once said me, “It was not merely the stripes of men that Jesus endured.” The same person also told me “we should not hone it down to only the human aspects of the events.” These statements were made contending that there was an unseen exchange between God and Jesus, whereby Jesus was being punished by God in a way that was not visible by the things he was outwardly suffering at the cross.
Yet, according to the apostle Peter the “bearing of our sins” happened AT THE CROSS when Jesus suffered at the hands of sinful men, and by those stripes: the stripes Jesus bore in his body on the cross, we are healed.
According to Jesus, the apostles, the angel at the empty tomb, and the whole of the New Testament, the things which the prophets foretold about the crucifixion of Jesus are those things which actually played out, on the ground, in the flesh, at the cross.
The Bible does not teach that there was a “behind the scene exchange,” which happened in the spirit realm wherein God was personally afflicting Jesus apart from those thing he was suffering in his flesh at the cross.
Verses like Galatians 3:13 are sometimes used to support the conclusion that God, behind the scene or in the spirit realm, condemned Jesus, because something more than the physical sufferings of Christ was needed. Statements like “Christ was made to be a curse for us,” are sometimes extracted from their setting and used as a proof –text to support such views.
Those who teach such things often present the cross in a manner as if what actually happened to Jesus in the flesh wasn’t sufficient, and therefore some other suffering or torture was needed, such as God punishing Jesus by pouring out his wrath.
However, Paul’s qualifies his declaration that Christ was made a curse for by saying “Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: FOR IT IS WRITTEN, Cursed is every one that HANGETH ON A TREE.”
According to Paul, Christ was made a curse for us in the manner in which he suffered physically. Paul tells the Galatians, Christ was made a curse “BY HANGING ON A TREE.” Not by some exchange between God and Christ behind the scene.
Under the Law, it was the corpses of those who had already been executed, then hanged on a tree, which were cursed. In Galatians 3:1, the apostle Paul says, “Oh, foolish Galatians! Who has cast an evil spell on you? For the meaning of Jesus Christ’s death was made as clear to you as if you had seen a picture of his death on the cross.”
Notice that Paul appeals to the Galatians according to that which actually happened, out in the open, at the cross, and not by some “behind the scene” exchange.
The crucified body of Jesus Christ is the emblem of our redemption, and through his slain body, which was hanged on a tree, we are free from the curse of the Law.
The writer of Hebrews says we are SANCTIFIED THROUGH THE OFFERING OF THE BODY OF JESUS CHRIST once and for all (see Hebrews 10:5-10).
When men teach that something more than the physical sufferings of Christ were needed for our redemption, it only leaves endless trail of theories which cannot be plainly seen within the scriptures, such as the following:
- Jesus suffered under the wrath of God.
- Jesus was treated as a sinner by God.
- Jesus died spiritually.
- Jesus had to suffer in Hell to pay the penalty for our sins.
However, the Bible teaches none of these. Our salvation is simply by the death and resurrection of the Son of God and our redemption through his slain body and shed Blood.
When Jesus died on the cross, he took the punishment (in His flesh) which the Law demanded by “hanging on a tree.” He did this to bring an end to the Law, to redeem those under the Law, and enable the blessing of Abraham to come on the Gentiles.
Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree: That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith (Galatians 3:13-14).
May we learn what it truly means to glory in the cross.
THE BODY OF JESUS WAS THE OFFERING FOR OUR SINS
- 1 Peter 2:24, Who his own self bare our sins IN HIS OWN BODY on the tree that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.
- John 6:51-57, I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any men eat of this bread, he shall live forever: and the bread that I will give is MY FLESH, which I will give for the life of the world. The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us HIS FLESH to eat? Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day. For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me.
- Luke 24:39, Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have.
- Colossians 1:20-22, And having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven. And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled In the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight.
- Romans 8:3, For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh. (“In the likeness of sinful flesh, condemned sin in the flesh is literally translated, “by a sacrifice for sin condemned sin in the flesh).
- Hebrews 2:14-16, Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that THROUGH DEATH he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil; And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham (Hebrews 2:14-16).
- Note – Angels are spirits: “And of the angels he saith, Who maketh his angels spirits, and his ministers a flame of fire” (Hebrews 1:7). Jesus took upon flesh and blood, redeem us by His shed Blood through the offering of His sinless body. After His resurrection he appeared to His disciples and said the following: “Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have”
- Hebrews 10:5-10, Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me: In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin thou hast had no pleasure. Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God. Above when he said, Sacrifice and offering and burnt offerings and offering for sin thou wouldest not, neither hadst pleasure therein; which are offered by the law; Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second. By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
- Hebrews 10:18-22, Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin. Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; And having an high priest over the house of God; Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.
- 1 Peter 3:18, For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit.
- 1 Peter 4:1, Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin.
- Matthew 26:7-13, There came unto him a woman having an alabaster box of very precious ointment, and poured it on his head, as he sat at meat. But when his disciples saw it, they had indignation, saying, To what purpose is this waste? For this ointment might have been sold for much, and given to the poor. When Jesus understood it, he said unto them, Why trouble ye the woman? for she hath wrought a good work upon me. For ye have the poor always with you; but me ye have not always. For in that she hath poured this ointment on my body, she did it for my burial. Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached in the whole world, there shall also this, that this woman hath done, be told for a memorial of her.
- Mark 14:8 says: She hath done what she could: she is come aforehand to anoint my body to the burying.
- Matthew 26:26-27, And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body. And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.
- Mark 12:21-24, The Son of man indeed goeth, as it is written of him: but woe to that man by whom the Son of man is betrayed! good were it for that man if he had never been born. And as they did eat, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and brake it, and gave to them, and said, Take, eat: this is my body. And he took the cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them: and they all drank of it. And he said unto them, This is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many.
- Luke 22:19-20, And he took bread, and gave thanks, and brake it, and gave unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me. Likewise also the cup after supper, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you
- John 2:19-22, Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. Then said the Jews, Forty and six years was this temple in building, and wilt thou rear it up in three days? But he spake of the temple of his body. When therefore he was risen from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this unto them; and they believed the scripture, and the word which Jesus had said.
- 1 Corinthians 10:16, The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ?
- 1 Corinthians 11:23-27, For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, that the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread: And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, this cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me. For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come. Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord
- Ephesians 2:13-16, But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us; Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace; And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby…