Essential Truths of the Christian Faith - Sunday, May 29, 2016
Jesus Christ as Mediator
A mediator is a go-between. He is one who stands between two or more persons or groups who are in a dispute and tries to reconcile them. In biblical terms, human beings are described as being at enmity against God. We rebel, revolt, and refuse to obey the law of God. As a result, God's wrath is upon us. For this catastrophic situation to be changed or redeemed it is necessary that we become reconciled to God.
To effect our reconciliation, God the Father appointed and sent His Son to be our Mediator. Christ brings to us nothing less than the divine majesty of God Himself—He is God incarnate. Yet He took upon Himself a human nature and willingly submitted Himself to the demands of God's law.
Christ did not initiate reconciliation in an attempt to persuade the Father to put aside His wrath. Rather, in the eternal counsel of the Godhead there was complete agreement between the Father and the Son that the Son should come as our Mediator. No angel could adequately represent God to us; only God Himself could do that.
In the Incarnation, the Son took upon Himself human nature in order to accomplish the redemption of Adam's fallen seed. By His perfect obedience, Christ satisfied the demands of God's law and merited eternal life for us. By His submission to the atoning death on the cross, He satisfied the demands of God's wrath against us. Both positively and negatively Christ satisfied the divine requirements for reconciliation. He brought about a new covenant with God for us by His blood and continues daily to intercede for us as our High Priest.
An effective mediator is one who is able to make peace between parties who are in conflict or estranged from each other. This is the role Jesus performed as our perfect Mediator. Paul declared that we have peace with God through Christ's work of reconciliation: "Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ" (Romans 5:1).
The mediating work of Christ is superior to all other mediators. Moses was the mediator of the Old Covenant. He served as God's go-between, giving the Israelites the law. But Jesus is superior to Moses. The author of Hebrews declares,
For this One has been counted worthy of more glory than Moses, inasmuch as He who built the house has more honor than the house . . . And Moses indeed was faithful in all His house as a servant . . . but Christ [was faithful] as a Son over His own house, whose house we are." (Hebrews 3:3-6)
- A mediator works to bring about reconciliation between estranged parties.
- Christ as the God-man reconciles us to the Father.
- Christ and the Father are agreed from eternity that Christ should be our Mediator.
- Christ's work of mediation is superior to prophets, angels, and Moses.
The Essential Truths of the Christian Faith devotional is excerpted from Essential Truths of the Christian Faith Copyright © 1992 by R. C. Sproul. All rights reserved.
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