JESUS: Salvation in No Other (One Mediator between God and Men)
Introduction: Today we continue the series “JESUS: Salvation in No Other.” We are going deep into the Gospel and praying that God will give us great insight and encouragement. We do this so we may have boldness and confidence in our Lord Jesus, but also that we can have a better sense of the truth which will enable us to tell others the Good News of forgiveness and joy in Him.
READ Scripture- This is the Word of God
Point 1: There is One God
It is a foundational truth of Scripture that there is only one God. The great Shema of Scripture is founding Deut 6:4 and it has been persistently declared by the people of God for thousands of years- “Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one!” And one example of a New Testament counterpart would be 1 Cor 8:5-6, “For even if there are so-called gods, whether in heaven or on earth (as there are many gods and many lords), yet for us there is one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we for Him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, through whom are all things, and through whom we live.”
God, the one and only, desires all men to be saved. This phrase is in accord with 2 Cor 5:14-15 which says, “If One died for all, then all died; and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again.” Christ died for all because He wants all men to be saved. There is no question that the grace and love of God has been extended to all people through the death of JESUS. “God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Salvation is provided for all people, but only those who accept it are saved.
God desires all men to come to a knowledge of the truth. First of all, the word “knowledge” here is that compound Greek word that means something much more than simply knowledge. It means a thorough, saving, edifying knowledge. In order for all men to be saved they would have to all come to a thorough knowledge of the “truth.” What is the truth? JESUS said that the truth would make us free. I take the truth to be the Gospel. A thorough, saving knowledge of the Good News of Jesus Christ is what makes us free- from sin, condemnation, guilt, hopelessness.
That is why it is good and acceptable in the sight of God to pray for all men. We are told to pray for everyone – which may give us some fuel to “pray without ceasing.” We can see the direct connection between our prayer for all men and God’s desire that all men be saved. So, here is a simple prayer that you can pray for your spouse, children, family, friend, coworker, boss, president, “and all who are in authority.”
“Father, You desire all men to be saved, so it is my earnest plea that you bring him/her to a thorough and saving knowledge of the truth. May he/she grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. By His name we pray, Amen.
Point 2: There is One Problem between God and Men (Rebellion)
Without help our communion is broken because of our rebellion (Disconnect).
Without restoration the image of God in us is marred by rebellion.
There is a separator between God and men
This thing that comes between us is because of our rebellion. God has expectations of us and He is allowed to because He is God. He created us and even made us in His image. Not only that, but He is a holy God. The Scripture says that He is light and in Him is no darkness at all. He can not overlook transgressions and iniquities forever.
Though God’s expectations of us are only good and lead to a joyful, abundant life, we still go our own way. And yet the Bible says, “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death” (Prov 14:12). And in another place it is says, “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned, every one, to his own way” (Isa 53:6).
This thing that I am talking about is difficult to pin down. What I do know: It separates us from God. It is a barrier. It is a blocker. It is a problem. The Bible often calls it Enmity or Hostility. Follow with me through a few Scriptures:
1) Rom 8:7-8 “The carnal mind is enmity against God; it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God.”
2) Jam 4:4 “Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.”
3) Col 1:21 “And you, who once were alienated and enemies (hostile) in your mind by wicked works…” Apart from a Mediator, we are alienated from God.
Point 3: There is One Mediator between God and Men
The Mediator is the God-Man – fully God and fully man, not 50-50, but 10-100. This is the mystery that the Church has proclaimed for over 2,000 years. God became man and dwelt among us. He put on flesh and blood. Col 2:9 affirms, “For in [Christ] dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily” and Col 1:19 attests, “For it pleased the Father that in [Christ] all the fullness should dwell.” JESUS is the Divine Mediator. He is the One who has stood in the gap. He is the bridge over the wide canyon between God and us. He is the One that the ancients cried out for in the midst of their despair. Turn with me to a Scripture that gives me chills every time I read it Job 9:29-35. Job could consider how great God was and conclude that the gap was too wide, he could never reach Him or even plead his case before Him. He knew that the LORD could declare as He does in Isa 55:8-9 “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,” says the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.” Thank the Father that the Mediator has appeared in time and space to reconcile all people to God.
The Mediator gave Himself a ransom for all. A ransom is a price paid for another to buy redemption. In the 1st century the word was commonly used of the ransom price paid for the freedom of a slave, which is a great illustration of our freedom from the slavery of sin and death.
To be testified in due time: SEE Gal 4:4. We should confirm the truth in every opportunity.
Conclusion: God has given one answer for the problem of sin- the death of Jesus. He has offered only one solution for the problem of death- resurrection (of Jesus and then of us). Now we see that He has sent forth only one Mediator to stand in the gap between Him and us- the Man, Christ Jesus. There is only One Mediator and thankfully the Scripture announces, “He is also Mediator of a better covenant, which was established on better promises.” (Heb 8:6).
I appeal to you today, whether you have trusted Christ for many years or are just now accepting Him as the Savior of the world Turn to the One Mediator between God and men. Jesus Christ is the One who can and will restore your relationship with Almighty God. He is the One who sets you free from your sin, condemnation, guilt, and hopelessness.