The TOTAL TRUTH Solution for a Fractured America
Big Picture Answers for America's Big Problems -
Rebuilding on America's Original Worldview

by Leonard Ransil

Section 1: Biblical Christianity
Chapter 3     The Finished Work
All scripture references from New International Version unless otherwise noted.

Have you ever wondered why St. Paul wrote to the Corinthians “For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified?"  By then, Paul had experienced the wondrous "visions and revelations from the Lord" which he mentions in 2 Corinthians 12:1-4.  Therefore, he could confidently explain to them the fullness of the mystery of the finished work of the cross and what Jesus had accomplished for mankind.  For example, Paul declared that: Jesus was the mediating High Priest who legally removed the sin-infested chasm between God and man; He was the Lamb of God whose perfect blood conquered the Death Angel once and for all;  He was the divine scapegoat who paid the just cost of all sin and shame, disease and sickness. Yes, the cross was the altar from which Jesus, the victorious Christ, offered us freedom from the curse of darkness dominating our corrupt nature and from the crush of its guilt and shame.

New Beginnings

But His crucifixion did far more than deal decisively with our negative past caused by our sin nature.  When Jesus said, “It is finished,” He pointed to much more than just a great escape from Satan’s bondage.  His blood sacrifice inaugurated a new and infinitely better covenant than Abraham or Moses enjoyed.  “And to all who received Him, and who believed in His name, He gave power to become children of God.” (John 1:12).  Imagine that; a child of Satan could now become a child of the Most High God of the Universe.  The finished work of Jesus’ cross became the only bona fide way to see and enter the Kingdom of our Creator God.
Jesus Vindicated

So what happened in that dark tomb to make all this possible?   The Father, to whom this dead Son entrusted everything, “raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly realms, far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every title that can be given, not only in the present age but in the one to come.”(Ephesians 1:20-21)  Jesus’ triumphant resurrection proved He was the garden promise, the Savior of mankind, the last Adam.  Well, that’s great for Jesus.  He proved He was God beyond any reasonable doubt. But what about the past, present and future multitudes who, by faith, died with Him in the tomb?  (2 Corinthians 5:14  " ... one (Jesus) died for all, and therefore all died.").  Did He leave them behind?  

What About Us?

God’s holy word declares the following four astounding benefits for those who have been crucified and buried with Jesus by faith in His Finished Work:

First: “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live but Christ lives in me.” (Galatians 2:20a).  The formerly dead rebel instantly becomes God’s living sanctuary.

Second: “If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the former things have passed away; Behold, all things are made new.” (2 Corinthians 5:17).  This is nothing less than a total spiritual makeover.  By God’s design, an ugly caterpillar is transformed into an exquisite butterfly, shedding its cocoon.  By God’s doing, a sinner who dies with Christ by faith becomes instantly transformed into a new creation, discarding the corrupt nature.  Jesus Himself underscored the need for such a spirit transformation in Luke 5:37-38 by showing the folly of pouring new wine into old dried up leather wineskins.  His listeners knew that an old wineskin would necessarily burst with the expansion of the fermenting process.  Likewise, when reborn, a believer becomes a new creation spirit being so that he can be a habitation of the Holy Spirit without bursting. 

Third: The new believer in Christ, reborn from above by God, for God, is recreated “to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.” (Ephesians 4:25).  Jesus’ blood sacrifice for mankind was so perfect that it re-established right standing with God, enabling fellowship once again.  But, unlike the first Adam, the last Adam is God’s eternal Son.  Being in Him also grants every believer the privileged standing and relationship of a beloved child of Father God who can now say, “Abba; Daddy."

Fourth: Perhaps most amazingly, not only is the believer’s nature transformed but, because he is one with Christ in covenant, he is also transferred with Christ into heaven.  “And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with Him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus.” (Ephesians 2:6).  Obviously, this is initially only true for the spirit-self which is made righteous, and therefore, fully compatible with Christ.  This spiritual down payment of salvation will one day be made complete when the believer’s whole being is fully sanctified and transformed into Jesus like this finish!

A Miraculous Promise Fulfilled

All these benefits are the glorious fulfillment of Ezekiel 36:26 which foretold that fallen humans would receive a new heart and a new spirit.  By identifying with Christ by faith, believers miraculously receive a new creation identity as God’s own children and become partakers of His divine nature (2 Peter 1:40).  They are gifts of God’s pure grace - God’s riches at Christ’s expense.  Father God enjoys blessing anyone who agrees with Him and accepts His new covenant promises by faith, just like Abraham did.

God’s Riches for You and Me

Jesus’ last earthly prayer asked Father God to make all believers one with Him just as He is one with His Father (John 17:21). That was their mutual purpose before the world’s foundation.  Jesus removed all legal hindrances to mankind's return to God by becoming sin as our perfect substitute on the cross. 

God was now able to offer a new and everlasting covenant of love to every believer in Christ which consummated an incomprehensible reconciliation and a divine exchange between a race of rebels and a holy God.  The stench of humanity's rebellion was swallowed by the aroma of Christ. Consequently, “All things are yours whether … the world or life or death or things present or things to come -- all are yours, and you are of Christ, and Christ is of God.” (1 Corinthians 3:21b-23).       

Jesus' death gave us God’s life; His rejection won us God’s fellowship; His stripes earned us God’s healing; His shame purchased our freedom; His commissioning sent us His Holy Spirit.  And all this is but a glimpse of so great a salvation and an inheritance already operating on our behalf.  Amazing grace, amazing love!

Now It’s Your Choice

When God’s dear Son restored God’s favor toward mankind, it became free to any person who gratefully accepts His stupendous news of deliverance and forgiveness and unlimited blessing as true.  “That if you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.  For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and with your mouth that you confess and are saved.” (Romans 10:9-10).  This suffering Servant could not have made it harder for Himself; this triumphant King could not have made it easier for you!  His finished work cannot be earned but is received by simply trusting in what He says.  How radically different from meeting the fruitless requirements of all other worldviews, whether concocted by the mind of man or by Satan himself.   
A Future and Hope

Thanks to the glorious benefits of the new covenant, each believer in Christ now has a new identity, a new purpose, a new future and a certain reward.  Before comparing Christianity with other worldviews, we will explore God‘s promises for the future that await those who accept Jesus Christ’s free offer.  Be assured: the best is yet to come. That is the Total Truth.

Total Truth = Big Picture Thinking
I welcome your questions and comments: