Is Christ’s sacrifice enough?

You speak of how Jesus’ death on the cross covers our sin. The exchange doesn’t work for me though… he died and was excommunicated from God for 3 days and can then save all those who all on Him? It seems a bit unjust to me! 3 days of death for an eternity with his people… now if he was to die in our place, that’s a sacrifice but he does not preside in Hell but in heaven with the father.  

Let’s say my brother got a life sentence, I would 100% do 3 days in jail over his life in jail. 

From what I can fathom, it is not a fair exchange. 

I don’t understand how his death for 3 days is enough to cover our eternity. It doesn’t seem like much of a sacrifice to me. 

Dont get me wrong, Jesus was an incredibly wise human and may have been Gods son. But, his sacrifice seems insignificant. 

So, how is Jesus’ sacrifice appropriate to cover our sins, how is 3 days of sacrifice enough to cover human kind?  

Do you have any wisdom to share on that topic? 


What number do you get if you multiply a miniscule fraction by infinity? Jesus is infinite God. Each of us are mere finite creatures, made by God. Each of us have a finite quantity of sin. It’s a lot, and more than I can list, but it is finite. That gives you a finite cost to pay. Add together those amounts for all of the people who will ever exist, and that is still a finite number. But Jesus, as the infinite creator, could take all of that on Himself in a moment, and more than cover the cost. The bottom line is that God the Father saw it as being sufficient. That’s the concept of “propitiation” that the Apostle Paul talks about in Romans. (Romans 3:25,26)


And why do I need forgiveness for my sins?


God is just.  Sin must be paid for, not ignored or brushed under the carpet.  Ezekiel 8:14

Romans 3:23

“For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

Romans 6:23

“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Why do I need forgiveness or salvation?

I ultimately still don’t see the need for forgiveness by Jesus for my actions beyond asking God for forgiveness of which I do.


It’s probably more a more a matter of repentance, rather than asking forgiveness.   1 John 1:9 is about a Christian maintaining a right relationship with God.  It’s the sort of thing that you are doing.  It’s what happens in a family when you realised that you have offended a family member, and you admit your wrong, and get things right with that one.  But doing that wasn’t what got you into the family.  You had to be born into it, or get adopted.  Repentance and faith is what triggers that to happen with us and God.  Repentance involves a recognition of which way you are going, and turning ‘about face’ back in the other direction.  Faith is recognising a truth and trusting it for yourself.


I will admit, that since I don’t have the same understanding of Christ, I do allow myself to enter into sin more freely (or potentially, with less guilt?), however, this has been something that has been incredibly freeing since leaving the faith in 2014. It’s not that I don’t understand the consequences for my sin. It’s that, it is permissible and now I don’t feel the weight of sin on my shoulders every single day. That was exhausting… The burden of feeling guilty for every time I do something that was not what God would have liked.


Something psychological is happening there.  It’s like the drunkard that figures that the fact that he drinks to excess is the fault of someone or something else other than his own choices.  So, he can feel good about crying in his beer.  If you can be convinced that your sin really isn’t sin, then you can feel good about yourself.  And, especially if you can rank yourself well above those around you, even some who claim to be Christians,  then you can feel really good about yourself.  But how you feel isn’t going to be what makes you right with God, or give you entry into heaven.

Furthermore, there is something spiritual happening there.  You may have been living the life of a Pharisee, and with that comes the pressure of living a life commensurate with the position.  So, you would find yourself under stress, trying to “live the Christian life.”  When you gave up on that the pressure of living under those conditions was relieved, so you felt better.  But the true Christian life is not living under some sort of set of rules and standards, requiring you to perform.  It’s about a relationship.  And when the relationship is right the ‘right living’ becomes natural.

Also involved in the spiritual side of things is the work of the enemy.

2 Corinthians 4:3-4

But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.

Between Satan’s influence and your sin nature, you have managed to create your own god to replace the real one.  You have a good relationship with him, and you feel good about it.  But it’s a fake.  An impersonation.  The Pharisee has a god of his making that makes him feel good about himself.  The person reacting to pharisaic living makes some major alterations to his god to suit his new approach to life, so he can again feel good about himself.  They are both missing the truth.


Why do I need salvation from my sins? Like sure, because there has to be consequences for not meeting Gods standard. But sin on earth should not result in an eternity of consequences. It doesn’t seem just to me??? 


Read Romans 2:11 to 3:20

We sin because we have sin nature.  A natural tendency to stray.  Take a wild pig out of the bush, and put it in your backyard, and you will learn that just moving to a new location doesn’t change who you are.  (Romans 5:12-21; 2 Cor. 5:17, 21)  Apart from that transforming work of grace, to move us to heaven would simply degrade heaven, and make it like sin-swept earth.

Shouldn’t the Christian life be hard?

So previously we have spoken about grace and about the law. This being something I greatly struggle with. I tend to believe that God will hold us more accountable for our actions than what I feel the majority of Christians would as they rely heavily on grace. From what I get from the bible, God is a God of action. God is a God of righteousness. And I don’t understand why God is more concerned with people finding comfort in his sons sacrifice than people actually dying to themselves and living a life that actually honours him. 

I know if I was God, I would rather people show their love to me by sacrificing their joy and happiness to do my works rather than sitting under “grace” and holding onto their lives. 

My understanding of faith is that our life under Christ shouldn’t be easy. Life was incredibly hard for Jesus. It was rough for the disciples and it shouldn’t easy be for us now.  People seem to live these lives where they have ‘faith’ but it doesn’t seem to truly impact them. And I guess, if faith doesn’t impact your actions then what kind of faith is it? 

We are called to serve only one master and to serve him means to do his will over our own. To serve Christ would be to do his will. His will, I believe, is very straight forward. It is to share his word, openly. To go out into the world and do good works. To be kind to the poor, to love those who need love, to welcome those who need welcoming. To serve those who need serving.  I don’t see how you can have a relationship with Christ and not do those things… 

Any help there? How can someone be saved but not reflect the life of Christ? To know Jesus is to love Jesus and to love Jesus is to do his will. I don’t think you can truly have faith without works. Nor can you do good works without knowing Jesus (to some point) because if God/Jesus is good, righteous and loving then to show that in one’s life is to know God… okay, sure, that second part of the argument is a little weaker. But we’ll get there… 


John Eldredge points out in his book that many people who are religious are not true believers, and are not on their way to heaven.  He makes a big point about Jesus being very contrary to the popular and highly dedicated religion of His day.  James makes it clear that if a person’s works are contrary to what they ought to be, that person’s faith is questionable.  OK, that’s gracious Jim saying that.  My namesake said their faith is dead (James 2:17).  The writer of Hebrews, speaking to Christians (Heb. 10:19), says that if we sin willfully (verse 26), that “It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.” (verse 31).  That doesn’t mean that we lose our salvation, but it’s like if I as a child did something that I knew my parents told me I ought not to do, and then got caught out by them, it would be a “fearful thing.”  Hebrews 12 points out that God exercises discipline, and that’s not something pleasant.  Yet, in talking about that time when we give account of our lives before God, Paul points out that for the genuine believer who has come short, “…he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire.” (1 Cor. 3:15)

Knowing God, knowing Jesus

I guess, my new question is… if God is God, Jesus is God and the Holy Spirit is God as well then, isn’t knowing one the same as knowing them all. 

As a monotheistic religion, God is God. Sure, there are different facets of God, different experiences of God so that he can reach people where they are at in whatever they need, but ultimately, to know one would be to know all. Sure, not understanding all of God would lead to you missing out on aspects of God’s love… but, if God is one, then knowing some of God is still knowing God. 

Otherwise, the idea of Christianity being a monotheistic religion would be wrong because they would be 3 separate entities and therefore 3 different Gods. 


  • God exists in three persons.  So, while they all are the one God in essence, they are individuals.  That would mean that they each have individual personalities, while having the same character.  Yet Jesus said there was a link between knowing Him and knowing the Father.

Matthew 11:27

All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him.

John 8:19

Then said they unto him, Where is thy Father? Jesus answered, Ye neither know me, nor my Father: if ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also.

John 14:7

If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.

John 14:9-10

Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works.

I’ve just started reading a book entitled, “Beautiful Outlaw” by John Eldredge.  It was recommended to me by my son, and he has found the concept presented life transforming.  It’s all about knowing Jesus, but not just conceptually.  Rather, it’s knowing him as a three dimensional person – with real, individual personality.  His humanity really brings that out.  Knowing more about the individual personality of the Father and of the Holy Spirit is more difficult. But, as you read especially about Jesus’ interaction with them, you can get a bit of an idea about their personalities as well.

The key thing is John 14:6 “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” If you want to really know the Father, you need to come to know the Son.

Salvation of the Jews

Were Old Testament believers made acceptable to God through their keeping the Law?  Are all Jews saved and going to heaven?

Paul recognised that many, if not most, of his countrymen were on their way to Hell.  This burdened him greatly (Romans 10:1-4).  He acknowledges that:

  • Some did not believe (Romans 3:3)
  • All Jews and Gentiles are under sin (Romans 3:9,23)
  • The Law doesn’t justify any.  It condemns (Romans 3:19-20)
  • Salvation comes through faith for both Jews and Gentiles (Romans 3:27-30)

Warped beliefs

Is it the fault of a loving God that those with warped beliefs are believing the wrong thing?

Adam and Eve apparently believed the wrong thing about God and the reason why there were not to eat of the fruit of the tree of life.  Or, at least they doubted.  Is it surprising then, that other people would do the same?  Did that happen because God didn’t love them?  He created the universe, Earth and the garden for them.  He visited with them personally every day.  That would seem to be pretty good evidence that He really cared for them.  He gave them the freedom to choose.  Not some artificial thing (such as elections in Russia, China or North Korea), but genuine freedom, allowing them to choose something other than Himself.  Of course, without that, choosing Him wouldn’t mean much.

Is it possible to know what the truth is so that we can know that we are believing in the right thing?

This requires God revealing Himself to us.  And, He has done so, through creation (Romans 1:19,20; Psalm 19), Jesus Christ (Hebrews 1:2), prophets (Hebrews 1:1) and closely related to that, the Scriptures (2 Peter 1:20,21).

How can a loving God send people to Hell?

Let’s say that you really loved the people in your street, and wanted the very best for them.  Imagine you had a family: a wife and kids that you dearly loved.  Thinking about the people in your street, what if one of them was a rapist, used vile language and was dealing in drugs.  Would that person be one that you would welcome into your home without any conditions?

God is a loving God, holy and just.  He wants everyone to be with him in heaven, but for heaven to be what it is, sin cannot be allowed to come in.  And that is what would happen if he allowed sinners in without their sin being removed.

Of course, that leaves us with a problem, given that all of us have come short of God’s perfect holiness, and thereby have sin in our lives.  (Romans 3)  Just adding good deeds isn’t going to remove the sin.  We can reduce the amount of sin that we are committing today and into the future, but that doesn’t do anything to change our past record, and even when we are trying our best, we are still going to come short.  (Titus 3:5)

God was fully aware of this dilemma, and He had a “fix” for the problem: Jesus Christ would become a man, take our sins upon Himself, and accept the appropriate punishment for them.  (Isaiah 53:5,6; 2 Corinthians 5:21)  Being infinite God, He could provide an adequate payment for the sins of all men by dying on the cross, His blood being shed, and briefly being separated from His heavenly Father.  With the price for our sins being paid, the gift of eternal life was purchased for us.

But now we have another problem.  When God created us, he was looking for ones to fellowship with.  To spend time with them and interact on a personal basis.  He didn’t want machines or robots.  So, He created us with free wills.  Man could decide to follow Him and be close to Him, or go his own way.  Unfortunately, Adam chose the latter, and that has affected all of his descendants.  And now, even with the price paid for sin, and with it being offered to all men, man still has a choice.  The gift is being offered.  We can either accept it or reject it.  If reject it, then God has no other choice to separate us from Himself for all eternity.  It’s what we have chosen.  (John 3:16-18)

The measure of God’s love for all mankind is the gift of His Son.  No higher price could be imagined.  Just think of what it was like for Him to see His Son mocked and scorned – spit upon, abused, falsely accused and nailed to a cross.  Yet the worst part about it was when He had to turn His back on His own Son, as Jesus cried out, “Father, why have you forsaken me?”  But He went though with it because He loves you.

What is left is for us to receive the gift.  Romans 10:9-13 tells us how: believing the good news, and calling on Christ for salvation.

More on this topic:

Can God be both a loving God and also be just?

Yes, and He is.  Note that love (Greek: agape) means that we desire the very best good for the object of our love, even at great personal expense.  It doesn’t require that they deserve it.  We want that because we love them.  What happens then, if someone we love is justly condemned?  If we bypass justice, we are corrupt and ought to be condemned ourselves.  God cannot do that, it’s contrary to His character.  What He can do is to provide a way for the condemnation to be passed on to someone else through a ‘justice transaction.’  Just like an accountant can debit one account and credit another, so our sins can be transferred to another, and paid for by that one (Isaiah 53:6; 2 Corinthians 5:21).  Our sins were placed on Christ when He was condemned on the cross, His righteousness is placed on our account when we call on Him for salvation.  Note as well, that He can do a bit of ‘heavenly advertising’ to draw us to Himself.  The testimony of others who have followed Him is powerful (John 4:39).  We know that the Holy Spirit convicts the world of sin, of righteousness and judgement (John 16:8).  He doesn’t force us, but there is some ‘heavenly magnetism.”  Without that we certainly would go our own way instead of His. 

How can a loving God send people to Hell?  Can’t He simply choose to ignore their sin, or at least give them another chance?

See above.  See also the story of the rich man and Lazarus (Luke 16:19-31).


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Pastor Jim


What is our mission, and how can we express it?

Consider Matt. 28:18-20. We are to make disciples of all nations by going, baptising and teaching – empowered by Christ. This involves reaching out, winning others to Christ, training them in Christian living.

What is the motivating factor? Christ’s command.

Why is that motivating? He loved us so much that He gave His life for us.

That has made all the difference in our lives for all eternity. We in turn love Him, and the Heavenly Father who sent Him.

When we understand His love for us, it makes us realise that He loves everyone. As He loves them, and gave His life for them, we realise that He wants us to love them as well.

It all revolves around love.

               God’s love for us.

               Christ’s love of the Father and of us.

               Our response in loving the Father and Son.

               Our further response in learning how to love the unlovely.

An aspect of this is automatic, but much of it is something that we need to grow in and develop.  That’s the role of our church, our mission.