Post details: The death of Jesus is not the end, but a means to an end.


Permalink 03:55:17 am, Categories: GraceHead teaching, By Trent, 1159 words   English (US)

The death of Jesus is not the end, but a means to an end.

Who should you believe about the reason for the incarnation of the Son?

Do you believe your seminary trained pastors, when they say that "Jesus came to die for your sins so that the dirt of your sin will be made clean?"

What if I told you that the greatest person ever born on earth and a bona fide prophet of God had a totally different take on the reason for the coming of the Messiah, that had no mention of the "finished work on the cross," no mention of His death and nothing to do with forgiveness?

Would you believe God's great prophet, or would you believe your orthodox pastors?

I am not the one calling him the greatest person that has ever been born of a woman. The Lord Jesus called John those very things (see this passage) ... and I point to John's words as to the commission of Jesus, Who along the way to His stated goal happened to die on a cross for sins as a means to that end.

John states the accomplishment for which the Lord Jesus came as ...


Holy SpiritJohn states the accomplishment for which the Lord Jesus came as: "He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire." - Matt 3:11 (and echoed again and again and again.) Four recorded charters, each echoing the other, and in no case was there ever a mention of how you are dirty and Jesus will make you clean. No mention of forgiveness, nor judicial atonement, nor anything of that nature.

Paul understood the ultimate goal was not realized at Calvary, and treated the cross as something that was done by the Lord Jesus on the way to the goal of bringing Life to the dead by the impartation of the Holy Spirit. Calvary was the means to an end, but His death was not the end of itself.

Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God's wrath through him! For if, when we were God's enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life! - (Paul Romans 5:9-10)

You see, all men are forgiven, and the way to salvation is opened at the cross ... However, Paul makes it clear that not everyone enters salvation.

Paul recognizes there are those that "separated from the Life of God" (Eph. 4:18) Even though the same people are among those "that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men's sins against them." (2 Cor. 5:19)

One can be forgiven, yet separated from the Life of God. There is no way around it ... Jesus came to "save," as the prime reason that Jesus came to earth in the first place ... it is the Holy Spirit's infusion of Life that is IS the salvation. As John continues: "The ax is already at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire. I baptize you with water for repentance. But after me will come one who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not fit to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. His winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor, gathering his wheat into the barn and burning up the chaff with unquenchable fire." (Matt 3:10-13)

Of course, this is in harmony with the Lord Jesus' own stated charter: For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

Is it really a "dirty to clean" mission, that Jesus was on? Or a "death to life" mission that He was on? The cleansing is great! Don't get me wrong, I like that He died for the sins of the world, but it is a minor subject in scripture with secondary mention ... contrary to what you might have heard from the pulpit.

"He came to forgive you by dying" - the clergy
"I came that you might have Life (and I'll make it stick by taking care of every sin along the way)" - Jesus

The function of faith is to bring sinful men into the possession and enjoyment of the benefits of Christ's salvation. The Atonement per se saves no one. It merely makes salvation possible. It brings within the reach of man a power by which he can be saved. By His atoning sacrifice Christ has brought the whole world into a salvable condition. All men are not actually saved, but all men may be saved. Universality is in the Saviour, not in the salvation. The nexus between the universal Atonement and the individual experience of its saving efficacy is faith. By faith universal potentiality becomes personal power, universal bestowment becomes personal possession, and universal grace becomes personal righteousness. The gospel is the power of God unto salvation, not to all men indiscriminately, but 'to every one that believeth.' (James M. Campbell. The Heart of the Gospel. Fleming H. Revell. 1907. pg. 171.)

"It is essential that you should realize that His cross was the means to an end; for to confuse the means for the end is to rob the Lord Jesus of that for which He came. He came that you might have life! His life imparted to you by the renewing of the Holy Spirit on the grounds of redemption, to re-inhabit your spirit, to re-conquer you soul, so that you might be "transformed into (His very own) image in every increasing splendor and from one degree of glory to another" (II Cor. 3;18). The gift of the Holy Spirit is the end toward which the cross was but the means; redemption was never designed by God simply to make you fit for heaven it was designed to clear the decks for spiritual regeneration, which would make you fit for earth on the way to heaven." (W. Ian Thomas - The Mystery of Godliness. Zondervan 1972. pgs. 101-103)

"When the Protestant doctrine of justification is formulated only in terms of forensic imputation of righteousness or the non-imputation of sins in such a way as to avoid saying that to justify is to "make righteous", it is the resurrection that is being by-passed. ...justification is empty and unreal, merely a judicial transaction, unless the doctrine of justification bears in its heart a relation of real union with Christ. Apart from such a union with Him through the power of His Spirit, Christ would remain, as it were, inert or idle. We require an active relation to Christ as our righteousness, an active and an actual sharing in His righteousness. This is possible only through the resurrection; - when we approach justification in this light we see that it is a creative event in which our regeneration or renewal is already included within it." (Torrance, Thomas F. - Space, Time and Resurrection.

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