Our Absolute Need Of Jesus Christ 

Large numbers of Christians do not really know why Jesus Christ had to die and why Christ’s righteousness needs to be credited to them as a part of them being saved. As a result, they are unable to share the Gospel with unbelievers properly.

The reason Jesus had to die relates to the fact that the God-given penalty for sin is death – spiritual and physical. Spiritual and physical death is a result of God’s Spirit cutting Himself off from the hearts and bodies of humans. God is perfectly holy and sinless. He cannot live inside people who sin even just once, unless the just penalty for their sins has been paid and they can somehow be declared righteous by Him. As a result of God being sinless, perfectly holy and totally righteous, He must separate Himself from every person who does even just one wrong thing. Isaiah 59:2 states: “But your iniquities have separated you from your God; and your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He will not hear.”


The unbreakable vicious circle


All descendants of Adam are born with natures tending toward sin (see Genesis 8:21, Psalm 51:5, Jeremiah 17:9 and Ephesians 2:3). Their sinful natures encourage them to commit personal sins. Their sinful natures and personal sins all result in a God-given penalty of spiritual death. Spiritual death itself involves them being cut off from God Who is the only One Who can empower them to not sin and Who can give them a sinless nature. As a result, they are locked into an unbreakable vicious circle from which they can never free themselves. Spiritual death results in personal sin and sinful human nature, which makes them further deserving of spiritual death.

Also, as descendants of Adam, all humans have his sin debited to their accounts (see Romans 5:12-19). So this also locks every human into being continually deserving of spiritual death.

The above points relate to why no human without God’s grace through Christ could go to heaven. People with even one sin cannot enter into heaven. Because of their sinful nature, personal sins and debited sin from Adam, no fallen human is perfectly right in their nature or legal standing before God the Supreme Ruler and Judge. No matter how many good things they do, their sins and sinful nature are enough to prevent them from going to heaven. This is another aspect of the unbreakable vicious circle in which every human is caught.

Heaven is not only where sinners cannot enter. It is also where only the perfectly righteous can merit entry. So no human except Jesus Christ deserves to go to heaven.

Because every human is locked into such an unbreakable vicious circle of spiritual death, sin and lack of perfect righteousness, God, in kindness, mercy and love, provided Jesus Christ as the solution. Christ's death and the crediting of His perfectly right standing before God are the only means by which fallen humans could be saved from hell and be accepted into heaven.




No limited time in hell would pay the penalty owing for sin


There is nowhere in the Bible which suggests that any limited period of suffering in hell would be a sufficient punishment to pay for the enormity of human sin against their loving Creator. As stated previously, the penalty for sin is physical death and eternal spiritual death. This is one reason why all humans who are sentenced to hell stay there eternally. They never reach a stage, say in a million years, when God can justly say they have paid the penalties for their crimes against Him and each other.

Here we see how infinitely more serious are sins regarded by a perfectly just, holy loving God than how human courts view crimes. Human judges may sentence criminals to many years in gaol. But God cannot give sinning humans a time limit to their punishment in hell that in His eyes would adequately pay for the horrendous nature of their sins.

Humans are sent to hell because they are under a sentence of spiritual death. Hell is a suitable place for such people. Spiritual death means being eternally cut off and separated from God.

While in hell, humans suffer more than eternal spiritual death. For there is also the tormenting fires of hell (see Matthew 18:8, 18:9 and 25:41). But eternal spiritual death is the main punishment. 

There is only one other punishment spoken of in Scripture that God decrees is a sufficient payment for sin. This is the death of the sinless perfect God-man named Jesus Christ. Without His death and His right standing before God being credited to us, we all would have remained locked into the dreadful unbreakable vicious circle described above.


Bible Study Questions


1.         Why did Jesus Christ have to die on the Cross?

2.         What is the unbreakable vicious circle in which all unbelievers are trapped?



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