Did Jesus Die In Vain?
In the New Testament letter to the Galatians, Paul’s main theme is that we cannot earn our way into favor with God, neither in this life nor in heaven. Though there are many great things Paul writes in this letter, he sums his argument up in chapter 2, verse 11: 21 I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died in vain.” We are born sinners. We are not born righteous. We need the righteousness of God. Many people believe that this righteousness is given to us by good works or as I like to say, not too many bad works. That is what Paul says when he writes, “comes through the law”.
But if we could obtain righteousness through the law, then why did Jesus die on the cross? It makes more sense to have Jesus live to a ripe old age and then end His life by saying, “Ok, I’ve given you the example…live like Me and you’ll be accepted”. But Jesus dies on a cross. We know He died that we might, by faith not works, receive His righteousness. However, if we could obtain God’s righteousness through our effort, then the cross was a silly idea.
What are you trusting in for righteousness…your effort, your deeds? If so, you are setting aside the death of Jesus. Rather, trust in His death for your righteousness. By faith receive Him and live each day in that faith.