We All Need a Substitute

And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him, (Colossians 1:21-22 ESV)

Beloved,

The air conditioner was broke during the first game of the NBA finals between the Miami Heat and the San Antonio Spurs. The heat affected both teams including NBA superstar Lebron James. He cramped late in
the game and could no longer perform his role so he had to be substituted for someone who could perform his necessary role.

Physical ailments hinder players from performing their necessary athletic duties as our sin hinders us from performing our God glorifying roles. Our sin causes us to fall short of the glory of God, alienating us from God’s glory. We are no longer able to fulfill our role in glorying God so we need a substitute. We need someone else to perform our role that we are now unable to complete because of our hostile minds and evil deeds.

God provided a substitute for us in Jesus Christ. He fulfilled the role of man perfectly by obeying the Father perfectly. After living in perfect obedience to the Father, He reconciled the world to God in his death in his body of flesh. He willingly died as our substitute to pay the penalty for our sin. Sin does not eliminate our need to perform our God glorifying role, but makes us incapability of fulfilling our tasks.

God forgives our sin, but by no means clears the guilty. The death of Christ shows God’s immense hatred for sin. Forgiveness and righteousness are only offered through Christ’s perfect life, his atoning death and grave-conquering resurrection. Jesus had to die in our place in order for us to be presented holy and blameless and above reproach before God. Jesus died for us, the righteous for the unrighteous to bring us to God.

Beloved, let us always be reminded that we were once alienated from God, hostile in mind doing evil deeds, but now have been reconciled through Christ’s death. You were once far off, but have been brought near through the blood of Christ. Never lose the wonder of how our Redeemer, the Lord Jesus Christ, died in our place so we could live.

Steven Brazzell

Charlotte, NC