Penal substitution does not turn God into a cosmic child abuser. It does not reduce Christ to the passive victim of some divine injustice. It does not put the Trinity against itself. No, in the God-forsakenness of Christ on the cross, the love of God and the justice of God are revealed on our behalf. United in purpose, Father and Son act in concert to save God’s people. The sinless Son of God bears our sin, and then God pours out the wrath that our sin deserves, and Jesus the Son endures it so that we, who deserve the wrath, might never encounter it. This is the gospel, the good news of the cross, and it calls is to forsake our sin, to turn away from it and embrace Christ, the forsaken one, so that we may not be forsaken.
Christian, what sin are you cherishing these days that you should not be? What sin do you feel like you just can’t forsake? What obedience do you feel like you just can’t make? Oh, Christian, remember that Christ was forsaken for you. In light of that, what can you not forsake? Friend, if you’re not a Christian, consider what small thing it is to forsake your sin, to forsake the whole world even, in exchange for never being forsaken by God.
Michael Lawrence – ‘It is well’
(HT: Jude St.John)