Christ’s Complete and Perfect Satisfaction

Christ’s obedience and sufferings are a satisfaction so complete to all the demands of the law and justice of God, and a price so full for our eternal redemption, that nothing can be added to it.

  • Such is the infinite dignity of Christ’s person that his fulfillment of the broken law is sufficient to balance all the debt of all the elect, nay of millions of guilty worlds (Col 2:9; Isa 7:14; Isa 9:6; Jer 23:6; Zec 13:7; Tit 2:13, 14; Acts 20:28).
  • God hath clearly manifested his [acceptance] of Christ’s satisfication as perfect, in raising him from the dead, exalting him to his right hand and making him head over all things to his church (Ro. 1:4; Phil. 2:6-11; Heb 2:8-10; John 16:10).
  • Christ’s offering himself but once manifest the absolute perfection of his satisfaction by it (Heb 7:27; Rom 5:15-19; 2 Cor 5:21).
  • Our complete justification by God, our reconciliation to him and redemption from all evil to perfect and everlasting happiness which are the immediate affect of Christ’s satisfaction, demonstrate the perfection of it. Hence it necessarily follows that 1) in God’s acceptance of Christ’s righteousness there neither is nor can be any taking part for the whole, or anything instead of that which is of greater value. 2) That as the best works of believers cannot satisfy for them in the least before God as their judge, so the infinite perfection of Christ leaves no possible room for their making any satisfaction.

—John Brown of Haddington
Systematic Theology

Via: A Puritan At Heart

R.C. Sproul – The Glory of Christmas

On the night Jesus was born something spectacular took place. The plains of Bethlehem became the theater for one of the most spectacular sound-and-light shows in human history. All heaven broke loose.

Luke tells us what happened:

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests.” (Luke 2:8-14)

The angelic visitor was surrounded by the glory of God. The glory was shining. This glory did not belong to the angel himself. It was God’s glory, signifying His divine mode of being. It was the divine splendor that shrouded the heavenly messenger, a visible divine radiance.

When the shepherds of Bethlehem quaked in fear, they were admonished by the angel: “Do not be afraid, for behold I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:10-11, NKJV).

Every human being longs for a savior of some type. We look for someone or something that will solve our problems, ease our pain, or grant the most elusive goal of all, happiness. From the pursuit of success in business to the discovery of a perfect mate or friend, we make our search.

Even in the preoccupation with sports we show a hope for a savior. As a sports season ends with far more losers than winners, we hear the cry from cities across the land — “Wait till next year!” Then comes the draft or a new crop of rookies, and the fans pin their hopes and dreams on the new kid who will bring glory to the team. The rookie, the new client, the new machine, the news that will arrive in tomorrow’s mail — all are invested with more hope than any creature can possibly deliver.

The burst of light that flooded the fields of Bethlehem announced the advent of a Savior who was able to do the task.

We note that the newborn Savior is also called “Christ the Lord.” To the astonished shepherds these titles were pregnant with meaning. This Savior is the Christ, the long-awaited Messiah of Israel. Every Jew remembered the promise of God that someday the Messiah, the Lord’s anointed, would come to deliver Israel. This Messiah-Savior is also Lord. He not only will save His people but He will be their King, their Sovereign.

The angel declares that this Savior-Messiah-Lord is born “unto you.” The divine announcement is not an oracle of judgment but the declaration of a gift. The newborn King is born for us.

—R.C. Sproul

Via: Ligonier Ministries Blog

Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence

Merry Christmas — Christ the Lord is born today!

Let all mortal flesh keep silence,
And with fear and trembling stand;
Ponder nothing earthly minded,
For with blessing in His hand,
Christ our God to earth descendeth,
Our full homage to demand.

King of kings, yet born of Mary,
As of old on earth He stood,
Lord of lords, in human vesture,
In the body and the blood;
He will give to all the faithful
His own self for heavenly food.

Rank on rank the host of heaven
Spreads its vanguard on the way,
As the Light of light descendeth
From the realms of endless day,
That the powers of hell may vanish
As the darkness clears away.

At His feet the six winged seraph,
Cherubim with sleepless eye,
Veil their faces to the presence,
As with ceaseless voice they cry:
Alleluia, Alleluia
Alleluia, Lord Most High!

—Liturgy of St. James, 4th Century A.D.

Altogether Righteous

To be entitled to use another’s name, when my own name is worthless; to be allowed to wear another’s raiment, because my own is torn and filthy; to appear before God in another’s person – the person of the Beloved Son – this is the summit of all blessing.

The sin-bearer and I have exchanged names, robes, and persons! I am now represented by Him, my own personality having disappeared; He now appears in the presence of God for me. All that makes Him precious and dear to the Father has been transferred to me.

His excellency and glory are seen as if they were mine; and I receive the love, and the fellowship, and the glory, as if I had earned them all. So entirely one am I with the sin-bearer, that God treats me not merely as if I had not done the evil that I have done; but as if I had done all the good which I have not done, but which my substitute has done.

In one sense I am still the poor sinner, once under wrath; in another I am altogether righteous, and shall be so for ever, because of the Perfect One, in whose perfection I appear before God. Nor is this a false pretense or a hollow fiction, which carries no results or blessings with it.

It is an exchange which has been provided by the Judge, and sanctioned by law; an exchange of which any sinner upon earth may avail himself and be blest.

—Horatius Bonar
The Everlasting Righteousness

Via: Tolle Lege

Bethlehem and Golgotha

The opening words from John Donne’s Christmas sermon delivered on December 25, 1626:

The whole life of Christ was a continual Passion; others die Martyrs, but Christ was born a Martyr. … His birth and his death were but one continual act, and his Christmas-day and his Good Friday, are but the evening and morning of one and the same day.

Via: Tony Reinke

The Word Became Flesh

God became human,
the invisible became visible,
the untouchable became touchable,
eternal life experienced temporal death,
the transcendent one descended and drew near,
the unlimited became limited,
the infinite became finite,
the immutable became mutable,
the unbreakable became fragile,
spirit became matter,
eternity entered time,
the independent became dependent,
the almighty became weak,
the loved became the hated,
the exalted was humbled,
glory was subjected to shame,
fame turned into obscurity,
from inexpressible joy to tears of unimaginable grief,
from a throne to a cross,
from ruler to being ruled,
from power to weakness.

—Sam Storms

Via: Trevin Wax