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Home Sermon Collection (ENG.Ver) English version The High Cost of Human Salvation
The High Cost of Human Salvation PDF Print E-mail
Written by Ir. David Kurniadi   
Friday, 06 April 2018 06:21

When God, or more precisely: the Son of God, made the world (Genesis 1:1-31; John 1:3) according to the Father’s will, it costs him nothing, because He just spoke the word and everything was created (Psalms 33:9). When He made human being, it also costs Him nothing, because He just used the dust of the ground (Genesis 2:7), to form his physical body and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living being.


But when God saved the world, it costs Him everything, because He must give up His only begotten Son (John 3:16), and the Son must give up His equality with God to incarnate as human being (Philippians 2:6-7) and laid down His life to die as man’s substitute (Isaiah 53:5) to save them from their sins (Matthew 1:21).


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


Why the cost of man salvation is so high, that it costs the life of the Son of God? It is because of two reasons: first is because God so loves the world (John 3:16), and second is because the world is so sinful (Romans 3:23).


Love determines value. When we love something, then it becomes valuable for us: the greater our love the greater the value. And God so loves the man he created that makes the man’s soul is so valuable before Him. How valuable is man’s soul before God? Its value is equal to the value of the whole world (Matthew 16:26).


“What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul?” (Matthew 16:26).


“No one can redeem the life of another or give to God a ransom for them – the ransom for the life is costly, no payment is ever enough” (Psalms 49:7-8).


Even the richest man on earth, his wealth will never equal to the value of the whole world. Yes, God values a single man’s soul to the value of the whole world. Then what would be the total value of the souls of the entire human race? Only the life of the Son of God, who creates them, can equal it.


Second: the great sins of the world. Every sin committed by man is recorded as debt (Colossians 2:14), and it is accumulated as long as he lives. But man never realizes his own debt of sin. They ask innocently: “what is my sin?” They think that sin is only associated with criminal conduct. But actually sin is every conduct that against God’s ordinances (1 John 3:4).


Cain killed his brother, Abel (Genesis 4:8). That is indeed a crime. But what did the crime that Adam and Eve have committed? They just ate the fruit (Genesis 3:6). Eating is not a crime. But what made them sin was they ate the fruit that God forbade them to eat (Genesis 2:17). Thus Adam and Eve did the thing that against God’s ordinance. This made them sinned (Romans 5:12), and eventually made the whole world to sin.

“Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man” (Romans 5:12)


Man also could not calculate the debt of their sins. For man it’s easier to calculate the debt of money rather than the debt of sins. That was why the Lord gave an illustration to make man realizes the value of the sins they have committed.


The Lord gave us the parable about a certain man who owed ten thousand talents of Gold (Matthew 18:24). If we calculate the 10,000 talents of gold with today’s value, it is worth of 3.3 billion US dollars. It’s a huge and tremendous amount for a personal debt that if he wants to pay in installments he has to pay more than 90 thousands US dollar per day, every single day, for a hundred years of his life, if he could live for 100 years. This is a debt that is impossible to be paid.


What did Jesus mean with this parable? He wants to show us that the minimum debt of person’s sin is so huge, even for the man who asks innocently: what is my sin? It is impossible for a man to pay his own debt of sin by himself. That is why God is the only one who can release man from the debt of sin (Romans 8:1; Colossians 2:14), by sending His Son to pay the debt for him.


Imagine, if the minimum debt of personal sin is so huge, how much more is the total value of the debt of sin of the entire human race? Only the life of the Son of God can equal that value and enough to pay for the redemption of human’s soul.


The salvation of man is nearly impossible: it’s impossible for man to do it by himself, but not impossible for God. How impossible is it? It is as impossible as “the camel to go through the eye of a needle” (Luke 18:24-27). It means there is no man can save his own soul; only God can do that. And under the heaven there is no man that can give mankind salvation, only God the Son, the only Savior for man!


“Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven (except the name of Jesus) given to mankind by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12).


It is “nearly” impossible because man is so sinful (Romans 3:10-18), but God wants to make that sinful man can live with Him – the Holy One - in Heaven, the Holy Place.


That is why the price of man’s salvation is so high, that it costs the life of the Son of God. The Son of God paid the price of our salvation: by emptying Himself, leaving His glory and becoming a mere human being (Philippians 2:6-8). In the likeness of man he became poor (2 Corinthians 8:9). He who had no sin bore all the sins of mankind (2 Corinthians 5:21) and their curse (Galatians 3:13), died a miserable death and descended to the lower parts of the earth (Ephesians 4:9), tasted death (Hebrews 2:9): the wages of sin (Romans 6:23), as man’s substitute.


The reason of why He did this is because of his great love for man (John 3:16; 15:13). His death on the cross was the greatest and the most romantic expression of God’s love toward mankind. It’s more romantic than the story of Romeo and Juliet.


By his death on the cross and the shedding of His blood, he purchased mankind for God from every tribe, every nations and languages (Revelation 5:9; 1 Peter 1:18-19). The value of man’s salvation is infinite: no one can afford it, so God gives it for free as His grace (Ephesians 2:8).


“For it is by grace you have been save, through faith – and this is not from yourselves. It the gift of God”(Ephesians 2:8).


“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus” (Romans 3:23-24).


So now, what is our appreciation for the grace we have received and for the price Jesus has paid for us that costs his life?


The apostle Paul urged us to offer our bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God – as our true and proper worship and appreciation upon His mercy (Romans 12:1). We were bought at a price, to become his possession (1 Corinthians 6:20), therefore we should no longer live for ourselves but for him who died for us and was raised again (2 Corinthians 5:15).


We should surrender ourselves willingly to Him who has paid the price of our salvation, because he has set us free from sin’s slavery (Galatians 5:1). Let us make Jesus our Master that we might safe from the hand of our former master, the Devil. If we live for ourselves: living independently, then we are in danger of being enslaved again by the Devil, to become his slaves of sin. But if Jesus, our new Master, owns us, we are safe, because the Devil cannot snatch us from his hand.


There is a good illustration for this. During the time when slavery still occurs, there was a slave who was beaten severely by his master. Then a certain rich man was passing by and saw what was happening. He felt pity for the slave and asked his master why he beat his slave. But the man said, it was none of his business. It was his right to do anything he wants for his slave even to kill him, because he was his slave: his purchased possession. But the rich man wanted to help the slave, so he asked if he could buy the slave. His master agreed to sell the slave to the rich man, but he set an unreasonable high price for the slave. But because of his compassion, the rich man agreed to pay the price in order to set the slave free from his master. After bought the slave, he brought him out the town and set him free because he didn’t want to make him his slave.


But the slave thought that if he lives as a free man and no one owns him then his former master will chase after him and enslave him again, and he will suffer like before. So the slave asked the rich man to become his master and made him his purchased possession. He was willingly to enslave himself to the rich man for the whole of his life to serving him. The safest life is when we become God’s own possession, and Jesus becomes our Master, because Jesus will protect and defend us, and will not let the Devil do any harm on us.


As the consequence of being God’s servant, we are to do the good work that He has prepared for us (Ephesians 2:10), that is to declare the praises of Him who called us out of darkness into his wonderful light (1 Peter 2:9). In other word to fulfill the Great Commission that the Lord has given us (Matthew 28:18-20) that is to preach the Gospel, to spread the good news about the forgiveness of sins and eternal salvation through faith in Jesus Christ.


In doing this, we are working out our salvation, as the apostle Paul urged us (Philippians 2:12). We don’t work for our salvation, but we work out our salvation, by telling the unsaved about the grace of salvation that they can receive through Jesus Christ.


This is like throwing the safety rope to the people drowning in the sea, while we are already safe in the boat. The safety of them is our responsibility, which have been saved. If we ignore them, we are very cruel and selfish people. And one day God will demand our responsibility.


If we have preached the Gospel but people reject us and do not want to believe, then it is not our responsibility anymore if they are lost (Lukas 10:10-12). But at least we have “thrown the safety rope” unto them. This is our obligation to work out our salvation.


For those who would become God’s witness, He will equip and empower us with the anointing of the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:8). And the Holy Spirit will give the confirmation upon our declaration of the Gospel (Marks 16:20). Besides, there will be a reward for those who work, either in this life or in the next life in heaven eternal (John 4:35-36). Thus our work secures our salvation: it makes our name are written in heaven (Luke 10:20).    


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