The Exchange at The Cross

Key Concept: All the evil due to sinful man was visited upon Christ, that all the good due to the sinless perfection of Jesus might be transferred to us.

Hebrews 10:14 KJV 14 For by one offering [sacrifice] He [Jesus] hath perfected forever them that are sanctified.

What Jesus has done is complete, but then comes our part for us that are [being] sanctified, we appropriate what he has done as we separate ourselves to Him. Our appreciation of it, or appropriation of it is an ongoing process. It is progressive, but we need to start from the fact that the actual sacrifice is totally complete.

What does it mean to be sanctified to Christ?

Two powerful expressions are combined: “perfected” and “forever.” Together, they depict a sacrifice which comprehends every need of the entire human race and its effects extend throughout time and on into eternity. It is on the basis of this sacrifice that Paul writes in Philippians 4:19:“And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” All your need covers every area of your life—your body, your soul, your mind, your emotions, as well as your material and financial needs.

God has not provided many different solutions for the many problems of mankind. Instead, He offers us one all sufficient solution which is His answer to every problem.

Why do you think it’s hard for some of the world to receive Jesus (the solution to all their problems) as Lord and Savior?

In Isaiah 53:10–11 the prophet depicts a “righteous Servant” whose soul was to be offered to God as a sin offering. The writers of the New Testament are unanimous in identifying this unnamed “servant” as Jesus. The divine purpose accomplished by His sacrifice.

Isaiah 53:6: All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the LORD has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.

This is one thing we all have in common: we have turned to our own way. In so doing, we have turned our backs on God. The Hebrew word that sums this up is avon, here translated “iniquity.” The closest equivalent in English would be “rebellion”—not against man, but against God.

Why have we turned our backs on God in the past?

However, no one English word—whether it is “iniquity” or “rebellion”—conveys the full meaning of avon. In its biblical use, avon describes not merely iniquity but also the punishment, or the evil consequences, that iniquity brings in its train.

This applies to the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross. Jesus Himself was not guilty of any sin. In Isaiah 53:9 the prophet says, “He had done no violence, nor was any deceit in His mouth.” But in verse 6 he says, “The LORD has laid on Him the iniquity [avon] of us all.” Not merely was Jesus identified with our iniquity, He also endured all the evil consequences of that iniquity. Like the scapegoat that had prefigured Him, He carried them away, so that they might never return again upon us.

Here is the true meaning and purpose of the cross. On it a divinely ordained exchange took place. First, Jesus endured in our place all the evil consequences that were due by divine justice to our iniquity. Now, in exchange, God offers us all the good that was due to the sinless obedience of Jesus.

How do we appropriate what God has given us through Jesus work on the cross?

All of this proceeds solely out of the unfathomable grace of God, and it is received solely by faith. There is no logical explanation in terms of cause and effect. None of us has ever done anything to deserve such an offer, and none of us can ever do anything to earn it.

Ten Key Exchanges

  1. Wounded    /    Healed (Is. 53:4-5, Mt. 8:14-16)

Isaiah 53:4-5 4 Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted.  5 But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed.

Two truths are here interwoven; the application of one is spiritual, and of the other is physical. On the spiritual plane, Jesus received the punishment due to our transgressions and iniquities that we, in turn, might be forgiven and so have peace with God. (See Romans 5:1.) On the physical plane, Jesus bore our sicknesses and pains that we through His wounds might be healed. The physical application of the exchange is confirmed in two passages of the New Testament. Matthew 8:16–17 refers back to Isaiah 53:4 . . . healed all who were sick, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet, saying: “He Himself took our infirmities And bore our sicknesses.”

Have you ever experience a miraculous healing?

Again, in 1 Peter 2:24, the apostle refers back to Isaiah 53:5–6 and says of Jesus: . . . who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness—by whose stripes [wounds] you were healed.

The twofold exchange described in the above verses may be summed up as follows: Jesus was punished that we might be forgiven. Jesus was wounded that we might be healed.

  1. Punished     /     Forgiven (Is. 53:6)

Isaiah 53:6 6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray,  each of us has turned to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.

  1. Made sin     /   Made righteous (Is. 53:10; 2 Cor. 5:21)

Isaiah 53:10Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise Him;He has put Him to grief.When You make His soul an offering for sin,He shall see His seed, He shall prolong His days,And the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in His hand.11 He shall see the labor of His soul, and be satisfied.By His knowledge My righteous Servant shall justify many,For He shall bear their iniquities.12 Therefore I will divide Him a portion with the great,And He shall divide the spoil with the strong,Because He poured out His soul unto death,And He was numbered with the transgressors,And He bore the sin of many,And made intercession for the transgressors.

By His sacrificial, substitutionary death, Jesus made atonement for the sin of the whole human race.

2 Corinthians 5:21 For He [God] made Him [Jesus] who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him

Paul does not speak here about any kind of righteousness that we can achieve by our own efforts, but about God’s own righteousness—a righteousness that has never known sin. None of us can ever earn this. It is as high above our own righteousness as heaven is above earth. It can be received solely by faith.

What makes it hard for some people to be in righteousness?

  1. Death       /      Life (Heb. 2:9; Jn. 10:10)

In Ezekiel 18:4 the Lord states, “The soul who sins shall die.” In James 1:15 the apostle says, “Sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death.” When Jesus became identifi ed with our sin, it was inevitable that He should also experience the death which is 13 the outcome of sin.

Hebrews 2:9  9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, now crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.

The death that He died was the inevitable outcome of human sin which He had taken upon Himself. He bore the sin of all men, and so died the death due to all men.

Does this mean that everyone goes to heaven?

In return, to all who accept His substitutionary sacrifice, Jesus now offers the gift of eternal life. In Romans 6:23 Paul sets the two alternatives side by side: For the wages [just reward] of sin is death, but the [unearned] gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

John 10:10 10The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.

  1. Poverty     /    Abundance (2 Cor. 8:9, 9:8;) Dt. 28:47-48

2 Corinthians 8:9 9For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.

At what point did Jesus “become” poor?

2 Corinthians 9:8 8And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.

  1. Cursed       /     Blessed (Gal. 3:13-14; Eph. 1:3-4)

Galatians 3:13-14 13Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.” 14He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus, so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit.

Is it possible for a born again believer to be under a curse? How would you identify a curse?

Ephesians 1:3-4 Spiritual Blessings in Christ 3Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. 4For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love

  1. Rejected     /    Accepted  (Eph. 1:6; Mt. 27:46; Is. 53:3)

Ephesians 1:6 to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.

Matthew 27:46 About the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?”—which means, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”

What do you think brings about the spirit of rejection?

Isaiah 53:3 3 He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

  1. Shame      /    Glory (Mt. 27:35;Heb. 12:2;13:13; Hos. 4:7)

Matthew 27:35 35When they had crucified him, they divided up his clothes by casting lots.

Hebrews 12:2 2Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

How does the enemy use shame to separate the body of Christ?

Hebrews 13:13 13Let us, then, go to him outside the camp, bearing the disgrace he bore.

Hosea 4:7 7 The more the priests increased, the more they sinned against me; they exchanged their Glory for something disgraceful.

  1. Old man     /    New man (Eph. 4:22-24; Ro. 6:6)

Ephesians 4:22-24 22You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

Does the old man ever try to come back in your life?

Romans 6:6 6For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin

  1. Weakness   /   Strength (2 Cor. 13:4; 12:9-10)

2 Corinthians 13:4 4For to be sure, he was crucified in weakness, yet he lives by God’s power. Likewise, we are weak in him, yet by God’s power we will live with him to serve you.

How have you overcome a spiritual weakness in your life?

2 Corinthians 12:9-10 9But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.