Topic: Believe and Live Passage: John 18:39–18:40
While Barabbas played a minor role in the account of Christ’s death on the cross, he served as a profound illustration of the substitutionary atonement of Christ.
In his commentary on Romans (Vol. 2, p. 378), Donald Grey Barnhouse characterized Christ’s substitutionary atonement this way:
“Barbados was the only man in the world who could say that Jesus Christ took his physical place. But I can say that Jesus Christ took my spiritual place. For it was I who deserved to die. It was I who deserved that the wrath of God should be poured upon me. I deserved the eternal punishment of the lake of fire. He was delivered up for my offense. He was handed over for judgement because of my sins. This is why we speak of the substitutionary atonement. Christ was my substitute. He was satisfying the debt of divine justice and holiness. That is why I say that Christianity can be expressed in the three phrase: I deserve Hell; Jesus took my Hell; there is nothing left for me but His Heaven.”
Thank God for sending Jesus to die as your substitute on the cross. Ask Him to help you share this amazing good news with others who have yet to repent of their sin and place their faith in Christ.