Jesus Christ: The Sacrifice for Sin

Text: 1 Peter 3:18


1. Man is in need of a Savior.

a. Having committed sin, he is condemned as just punishment for it. (Rom. 3:10, 23; 6:23)

b. As a sinner, he cannot save himself. (Jer. 10:23; Prov.14:12) 2. Unless God acted to save man, all of mankind would perish.

a. Whatever salvation man has must come as a gift of God’s grace (Eph. 2:8-9), not on the basis of merit—we have done nothing to deserve salvation.

b. God’s love was great enough to send His Son to make lost man’s salvation possible. (John 3:16; Rom. 5:8)

3. Jesus Christ died as a sacrifice for man’s sins.

4. 1 Peter 3:18. “For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit.”

I. “Christ...Suffered”

A. His life was a life of suffering as it was prophesied it would be. (Isa. 53:3; Heb. 5:8) B. He suffered the reproach of the religious leaders of His day.

1. They sought to kill Him on many occasions. (cf. Matt. 26:3-4; John 8:59; 10:29; 11:53)

2. They conspired with Judas to have Him delivered to them. (Matt. 26:14-16) 3. During five separate illegal trials He was spit upon, slapped, mocked,

beaten, etc. (Matt. 26:65-67; 27:27-31) C. Finally, He was crucified.

1. Crucifixion was one of the most painful ways of execution man has ever devised.

2. “The suffering of death by crucifixion was intense, esp. in hot climates. Severe local inflammation, coupled with an insignificant bleeding of the jagged wounds, produced traumatic fever, which was aggravated by the exposure to the heat of the sun, the strained position of the body and insufferable thirst. The wounds swelled about the rough nails and the torn and lacerated tendons and nerves caused excruciating agony. The arteries of the head and stomach were surcharged with blood and a terrific

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throbbing headache ensued. The mind was confused and filled with anxiety and dread foreboding. The victim of crucifixion literally died a thousand deaths. Tetanus not rarely supervened and the rigors of the attending convulsions would tear at the wounds and add to the burden of pain, till at last the bodily forces were exhausted and the victim sank to unconsciousness and death. The sufferings were so frightful that ‘even among the raging passions of war pity was sometimes excited’ (BJ, Vm xi, 1). The length of this agony was wholly determined by the constitution of the victim, but death rarely ensued before thirty-six hours had elapsed...Death was sometimes hastened by breaking the legs of the victims and by a hard blow delivered under the armpit before crucifixion...The sudden death of Christ evidently was a matter of astonishment (Mk 15:44).” (Henry E. Dosker, I.S.B.E., Vol. II, pp. 761, 762)

II. “Christ...Suffered for Sins”

A. His death was not merely the case of an innocent person suffering an injustice. 1. He was an atonement for sin. (Rom. 5:11 - KJV. “And not only so, but we

also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.”)

2. He was the propitiation for sin—the means by which sin is covered and remitted. (Rom. 3:25; Heb. 2:17; 1 John 2:2; 4:10)

B. That Jesus would suffer for sins was a matter of prophecy (Isa. 53:4-5, 10-12) which He fulfilled. (Rom. 3:24-25)

III. “Christ...Suffered for Sins Once”

A. His sacrifice was a once for all-time event.

B. This is seen in the contrast of His priesthood to the Levitical priesthood. (Heb. 7:26-27; 9:24-28; 10:23-27)

IV. “Christ...Suffered for Sins Once, the Righteous for the Unrighteous” A. See 2 Corinthians 5:21; 1 Peter 1:18-19; and Hebrews 4:15.

B. He knew no sin—He was never guilty of transgressing any of God’s commands yet He suffered in order that ungodly sinners could be saved. (2 Cor. 5:21)

V. Salvation Is in Christ

A. All spiritual blessings are in Christ. (Eph. 1:3) These include: 1. Salvation. (2 Tim. 2:10)

2. Redemption. (Rom. 3:24) 3. Forgiveness. (Col. 1:14)

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4. Reconciliation. (2 Cor. 5:19) 5. An inheritance. (Eph. 1:11) 6. Eternal life. (1 John 5:11)

B. Salvation is only available through Him.

1. He is the way, the truth and the life. (John 14:6)

2. Unless one believes in Him, he will die in his sins. (John 8:24) 3. He has the words of eternal life. (John 6:68)

4. There is salvation in no other. (Acts 4:12)


1. The gracious love of both Father and Son allowed Jesus to come to earth, live as a man, and suffer that sacrificial death upon the cross.

2. His death made your salvation possible.

3. Since He died to save you, you need to live for Him.

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