Why Did Jesus Come to Die? (Reason 3)
Today’s snippet from John Piper’s book Fifty Reasons Why Jesus Came to Die is truly thought-provoking.
Jesus came to die…
- To Learn Obedience and Be Perfected
Although he was a son, he learned obedience through what he suffered. (Heb. 5:8)
The very book in the Bible that says Christ “learned obedience” through suffering, and that he was “made perfect” through suffering, also says that he was “without sin” (Heb. 4:15).
This is the consistent teaching of the Bible. Christ was sinless. Although he was the divine Son of God, he was really human, with all our temptations and appetites and physical weaknesses. But his heart was perfectly in love with God, and he acted consistently with that love: “He committed no sin, neither was deceit found in his mouth” (1 Pt. 2:22).
Therefore, when the Bible says that Jesus “learned obedience through what he suffered,” it doesn’t mean that he learned to stop disobeying. It means that with each new trial he learned in practice—and in pain—what it means to obey. When it says that he was “made perfect through suffering,” it doesn’t mean that he was gradually getting rid of defects. It means that he was gradually fulfilling the perfect righteousness that he had to have in order to save us.
If the Son of God had gone from incarnation to the cross without a life of temptation and pain to test his righteousness and his love, he would not be a suitable Savior for fallen man. His suffering not only absorbed the wrath of God. It also fulfilled his true humanity and made him able to call us brothers and sisters (Heb. 2:17).
John Piper, Fifty Reasons Why Jesus Came to Die, pgs. 20-21
Thanks for reading! Have a super Sunday.