“Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved” (Acts 16:31).
Why is this so? Why are those who believe in the Lord Jesus saved?
R. C. Sproul says, “The cross is meaningless without the incarnation and incomplete without the resurrection.” He is absolutely correct.
First, Sproul says, “The cross is meaningless without the incarnation.”
- Incarnation literally means in the flesh. At the root of this word is carnal, meaning flesh. In the flesh.
- Incarnation refers to God taking on human flesh and human form in the person of Jesus Christ.
- God became fully man in Jesus of Nazareth. When God appeared in human form in the manger in Bethlehem, he was fully man.
Incarnation of Christ means Jesus is fully God and fully human. Jesus needs to be both to be our Savior and Lord.
Jesus died on the cross on our behalf. The reason why he was able to do that was that Jesus was able to live the life we were not able. Jesus lived a perfect human life, a life without sin. Had Jesus sinned, when he died on the cross he would have died for his own sins. But because he lived a sinless life, a sinless person stood in our place to pay the debt of sin for our behalf.
Secondly, Sproul says, “The cross is incomplete without the resurrection.”
There was nothing unique about the death of Jesus on the cross. The Romans crucified over thirty thousand people. What makes the crucifixion of Jesus is that the second person of the Trinity died on that cross. It wasn’t just a human being that died on the cross. The Son of God died on the cross. And by dying on the cross as the Son of God, he took the place for all who believe in him and accept the gift of eternal life. Nothing unique about a man dying on the cross. But the death of the Son of God on the cross? That changes eternity!
How does Jesus’ death change eternity? Because of the empty tomb. Because the empty tomb proves that Jesus was not only fully human, but that he is also fully God. The resurrection completes the mission of Jesus to save sinners.
Jesus died for sinners by paying the debt sin. And by rising from the dead, we share in Christ’s glory and resurrection.
Jesus is who he said he was: the Son of the Living God.
This is the reason why those who believe in the Lord Jesus are saved.