There in the ground His body lay
Light of the world by darkness slain
Then bursting forth in glorious Day
Up from the grave He rose again
And as He stands in victory
Sin’s curse has lost its grip on me
For I am His and He is mine
Bought with the precious blood of Christ
I was going to skip this verse because I have already written a lot on the topic of sin but the imagery is so powerful I couldn’t resist. And quite honestly, shame on me for getting tired of telling others about the very thing that saved my soul so here we go!
I don’t know about you but I would love to know what exactly happened during the time when Jesus was dead. I mean was he down there, ninja style, battling the depths of Hell? Was he just hanging out down there trying to explain his diplomatic immunity? I imagine it to be more like how his arrest and crucifixion happened… abusive. I see him just standing there while the demons and Satan, himself, stood around hurling insults. He was bloody, bruised and bound but everyone of them afraid to get too close… Until one demon gets brave enough to hurl a stone and when the others see Jesus not defending himself, they begin to join in the physical abuse. But then. Aw, but then the third day rolls around and Jesus, the quiet sacrifice, who was up to that point accepting their degradation begins to glow. Softly, at first, and then brighter and brighter, until the Light is so bright that all of Hell is blinded and in fact, overwhelmed with the the brightness. The gates of Hell begin to tremble and then shake violently as Jesus slowly turns to face them. Then with all the authority of God he boldly proclaims, “OPEN!” And the gates don’t just swing open, they disintegrate before Him as he begins to ascend from the very pit of Hell, victorious!
Again, this is my own imagination, not Biblical fact but it would make for a great Hollywood flick! The truth is we don’t really know what happened during that time. We do know that he was killed, he was dead and he came to life again. And he did it so that we might live again too! How does this happen. Well, it helps to have an understanding of sin, the sacrificial system of atonement and how Christ became the ultimate sacrifice for sin. Back in the day, I’m talking thousands of years before Jesus, God set up a system of sacrifices to take away the sins of people. This is how it worked. When a person would sin, they would take an animal without any illness or physical defects to the priest. The priest would pray over it and do some ritualistic stuff to it, then the sin of the person would be transferred to the animal. The animal would then be killed and the sin was forgiven. That is a very basic overview of the sacrificial system of atonement or forgiveness of sins. Basically, God is perfect, and because he is perfect he demands us to be perfect too. Anything less than perfection deserves to die. Therefore, we deserve to die but God initiated a system of animal death to take the place of our death.
Fast forward to Jesus. He was perfect. He was a like the perfect, “animal” of the sacrificial system. He was without defect. He didn’t deserve to die for sin because he didn’t sin. And yet, he offered himself as a sacrifice and all of our sin was placed on him and he was slaughtered. Our transferred sin killed him. The Jews and Romans didn’t kill Jesus, I did! I did it with every sin I ever did. And because he died with my sin on his tab, I am forgiven. But unlike the animals of old, Jesus didn’t stay dead! He beat death and rose again. This makes him the victor over sin and not just a band aid for sin. You see instead of having to sacrifice an animal every time I sin, Jesus became the once and for all sacrifice because he rose again! It is because of this I can sing, “Sin’s curse has lost its grip on me!” This forgiveness of sins is offered to every one, though few accept it for themselves.
How do you get this gift of forgiveness? You have to admit to God and to yourself that you are a sinner and realize that you deserve to live a life eternally separated from God because of this sin. You must then ask God to forgive you and be willing to accept his forgiveness. Once you accept his forgiveness, you too can then sing with joy, “For I am his and he is mine, bought with the precious blood of Christ!” Your life will dramatically change if you begin to seek his ways instead of your own. Mine has.