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The Mystery of the Substitution

Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted (Isa. 53:4 KJV)

The substation image

The substitution is a theological term that describes Christ’s death in our place as sinners. An excellent Old Testament example is that of Abraham who was told to sacrifice his son Isaac. However, God provided a ram to be killed in place of Isaac as the scripture below says:

And Abraham lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold behind him a ram caught in a thicket by his horns: and Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering in the stead of his son (Gen. 22:13 KJV)

The ram was sacrificed instead of Isaac.

The wages of sin is death, and the soul that sins must surely die ( Eze. 18:4). This was our place as sinners, to endure death in all it’s forms including eternal death. Divine justice against sin upon every sinner seemed to have had a clash with God’s love for lost humanity. However, the Lord did the inconceivable. He became a Man, and as if that were not enough, He died in agony and shame as a sinner and criminal.The scripture above tells us that He bore our griefs, carried our sorrows and was bruised and crushed for our sins. He took our place. Sin is paid. It is finished. We are God’s children, free to live and serve Him without fear, enjoying eternal life until it overflows!


What are the things included in the “griefs” and “sorrows” in Isa. 53:4 above? ( See Matt. 8:16-17 for one example). Declare that “ Jesus died in my place as a sinner to bring me into His place, the glory of God!”


Are you going through a tough time that makes you wonder if God loves you or cares? Retake a look at the cross. That is what Christ would do because of His love for you.


Would you say the words “thank you Lord” again as you remember His death in your place?

Recommended Read: Why did Jesus Come to Earth?

Foundational Read: What is a Daily Devotional?

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