WHY CRUCIFIXION?

 

Scriptures are cited from the King James (Authorized) Version, unless stated otherwise.

 

Question: Was it necessary for Jesus to be crucified as the ransom-price for Adam and his race,

or could He have died in some easier way?

 

Answer: The entire world of mankind, both Jews and Gentiles, are under the sentence of death,

having inherited that sentence because of Father Adam’s sin. But by the grace of God, our Lord

Jesus, a perfect man, willingly laid down his life as a ransom, or substitute, for Adam and all of

his children, the whole human race (1 Timothy 2: 5, 6).

 

Divine Justice did not require that Jesus be crucified, to die on a tree, for Gentiles as such;

another kind of sacrificial death would have been sufficient for them. The Jews were, however,

under double condemnation – both the condemnation of Adam’s sin, and additionally the

condemnation of the Jewish, or Law Covenant. They failed to live up to the requirements of that

Covenant, whose standard was perfection to the letter and the spirit of its Law, and as a result,

came under its curse.

 

The Apostle Paul assures us that Christ died on a tree in order to redeem the Jews from the curse

of the Law, as we read in Galatians 3: 13:

 

“Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written,

Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree.”

 

The reason why He had to die on a tree to redeem the Jews is that to die on a tree was the

extreme penalty of the Law, and that for its worst violations (Deuteronomy 21: 23). For less

gross sins there were milder ways of meting out the death penalty under the Law, such as

stoning, etc. In order for Jesus to bear its penalty for all transgressions against the Law,

especially the worst ones, He had to submit to its severest penalty of hanging on a tree, “even the

death of the cross” (Philippians 2: 8).

 

Israel’s second sentence to death – brought about under the Law Covenant – was because Moses,

their Mediator, failed to keep himself, and all those for whom he mediated, perfect before the bar

of Divine Justice. Jesus, as a substitute for Moses, and therefore for Israel in Moses, had to die

under the extreme penalty of the Law in a most public manner as a law-condemned sinner, to

atone for Moses and for the whole nation, including its most wicked sins, for which fallen Moses

could not atone.

 

Because of Jesus’ sacrifice, while obeying the Law perfectly, He gained the Mediatorial office

that Moses lost by sin, and He will use this office in the next Age for releasing Israel from the

Old Law Covenant and for bringing them under the New Law Covenant.

 

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