19. CHRIST and the CROSS: Restoration, Part 1
As God designed and formed the human body, He knew, of course, that in the fullness of time even He would become a man. In that day, He would prepare a human body for His Son; and it would be “made in the likeness of men” (Philippians 2:7), just as man had been made in the likeness of God. Both in body and spirit, Jesus Christ was indeed Himself the image of God. Why did Jesus have to die on the cross? Why was it so important for Him to be resurrected from the dead? In what ways did Christ’s work on the cross and His resurrection frees those who believe in Him from the curse and its consequences?
Day One Study
1. Review Genesis 1:26-2:25. List words or phrases describing Adam and Eve’s relationships with God, each other, and their environment before sin. Example: perfect fellowship with God
2. Review Genesis 3:1-21. List words or phrases describing the effects of sin on Adam and Eve. Example: separation from God
Sin Is In Our Nature!!!
Someone might say, “I’m basically a good person and I’m very happy with my own religion, so why should I believe in Jesus?” If everyone was good in God’s sight, nobody would need Jesus. Oh, to be sure, most of us aren’t murderers or thieves or anything like that. We like to think of ourselves as respectable, with no need for major changes in our lives. Yet the picture the Scriptures present is that even the best of us is desperately sinful, deeply alienated from God, from each other and even from ourselves. We are all born sinners and continue to live that way!!
But God is serious about our sin. We tend to think that sin is exclusively a matter of committing individual acts. But sin is much more than that. The Scriptures show us that sin is a condition of human existence which does not pertain to a particular act, but rather to an attitude, one of arrogance and rebellion. The best of men, like Abraham, Moses and King David, all committed acts of sin. Sin is universal. And that’s why God provided a way of forgiveness, beginning with the Old Testament animal sacrifices and culminating in the death of the Messiah.
We really are sinful in the depths of our being, and all the education, affluence and technology in the world hasn’t changed that. It’s only enabled us to express our rebellion in a more sophisticated fashion. Jesus really did come in history, really did die and really did rise from the dead. All the objections in the world and all the ignoring of the evidence won’t make that reality go away…But God really does hold us responsible for facing the facts about ourselves and accepting His offer of forgiveness through Jesus.” (Adapted from , “Questions and Answers”)
The goal of this lesson is for you to see what Christ restored to us as individuals through His death and resurrection. Read the verses describing how sin and the curse affected us before Christ. Then read the corresponding verses to see what Christ’s death and resurrection restored to us.
3. a. Sin’s Effect: Read Ephesians 2:1-3, 11-12. How had sin and the Curse affected us before Christ? How is the life of the unbeliever described?
b. Restored: Read the following verses to see what Christ’s death and resurrection restored to us.
· Ephesians 2:4-10, 13—
· 2 Corinthians 5:17-21—
Day Two Study
4. a. Sin’s Effect: Read Romans 5:12-14. How had sin and the Curse affected us before Christ?
b. Restored: Read Romans 5:1-2,16-19. What did Christ’s death and resurrection restore to us?
5. a. Sin’s Effect: Read the following verses to see how sin and the Curse had affected us before Christ.
· Psalm 94:3-7—
· Ecclesiastes 2:1-11—
· Ecclesiastes 4:1-4—
b. Restored: Read the following verses to what Christ’s death and resurrection restored to us.
· Romans 5:3-5—
· 2 Corinthians 1:3-5—
· 2 Corinthians 4:15—
· 2 Corinthians 12:9-10—
Day Three Study
6. From what we have learned in this lesson,
· What impact should Christ’s work have on your life today?
· How does this lesson encourage you regarding the future?
· Does this lesson convict you? How?