“God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God” (2 Corinthians 5:21, NIV).
Trading is part of the human experience. From an early age, we learn the art of the deal. Trades occur daily across elementary school lunch tables where bags of potato chips are exchanged for chocolate chip cookies. Playgrounds become swap meets with the currency of toys and baseball cards. As adults, we trade-in cars, and we trade-out furniture. Then, of course, there’s the stock market and day trading.
The Apostle Paul speaks of a trade that took place some two-thousand years ago at the trading post of the cross, where Jesus endured the consequences of our sin so that we could receive the undeserved reward of salvation. Theologians throughout history have referred to this pivotal event as “The Great Exchange”.
Just imagine, Jesus, the personification of holiness and perfection, becoming sin incarnate on the cross. Within his flesh, Jesus possessed the sins of the world and literally carried them all to the grave. Because of this single act, each of us is declared righteous and holy regardless of the wrongs we have done. Our sin has been washed in the blood of Christ, buried in a borrowed tomb, and we are given the prize of Heaven.
There will always be trades that are made. None, however, will match the one Jesus made for mankind at the cross. Through this exchange, we are declared forgiven and free.