Summary: Jesus didn’t have to suffer in hell for us. He Paid the Price in Full with His shed blood on the cross of Calvary.
Paid In Full
By Pastor Jim May
There are a lot of preachers in the land today that are preaching doctrines that are not only unscriptural but can be quite dangerous to your faith if we aren’t careful to check them out according to the Word of God. Paul to Timothy in 2 Timothy 2:15, "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth."
One of the teachings that we hear quite often is that Jesus went to hell after his death on the cross as a part of the price of our redemption. This message is being taught over television and radio by a lot of people. They quote scripture in the message and the scriptures that are quoted will seem to confirm what they are teaching when you first read them. But I think that we should look at this message and these passages of scripture and rightly divide the Word of Truth to see what the Bible is really saying.
The message preached by some well-known teachers is based upon several scriptures. Now I’m not here to condemn their preaching or teaching, only to attempt to show you what really is being said.
Joyce Meyer wrote these words on page 37 of one of her booklets titled, “The Most Important Decision You Will Ever Make” in 1991, that, ‘You cannot go to heaven unless you believe with all your heart that Jesus took your place in hell!’ Is this teaching wrong? I think that your decision must be based upon what the Bible says, but that you must also study that Word to understand the meaning.
Do we believe that Jesus spent time in the Lake of Fire after he was crucified? Of course we don’t believe that!
Matthew 25:41, "Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:" That Lake of Fire wasn’t created for man, neither was it created to further punish Jesus as our substitute. It was created for the devil and the fallen angels. Men and women will go there for sure, but only because they chose not to accept the salvation that Jesus offered. They will go there to face eternal punishment for their rebellion, the same sin that Satan and his angels committed.
If you will read with me in the Book of John concerning the events at the crucifixion, there is something there that you should take note of.
John 19:28-30, "After this, Jesus knowing that all things were now accomplished, that the scripture might be fulfilled, saith, I thirst. Now there was set a vessel full of vinegar: and they filled a spunge with vinegar, and put it upon hyssop, and put it to his mouth. When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, It is finished: and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost."
What did Jesus mean when he said, “It is Finished”? Did he simply mean that his physical suffering was over? Did he mean that the price that he paid for our salvation was paid for only in part and that there must be more suffering over the next three days while his body was in the grave? Did his soul and spirit have to suffer more before the price of redemption could be fully paid?
The point here is simply this: What paid for your salvation? Was it the beatings in Pilate’s hall? Was it the nails in his hands and feet? Was it the crown of thorns on his head? What was it?
It was the innocent blood that He shed and nothing else. The suffering that he did was all part of what was needed for that blood to flow, to wash away our sin.
All of the sufferings of Christ served a purpose, in fulfilling of the Law on our behalf, or for our healing, but the only thing that washes our sin away is his shed blood and nothing else. When Jesus said, “It is finished”, he meant that the price of our redemption was paid in full. He had suffered and was going to surrender the “ghost” or give up his life willingly, but the price of redemption for all mankind was forever paid, once and for all time.
There would be no more suffering in hell required. Satan had already tormented Jesus in the Garden. He had already tempted and tried Jesus in the desert at the beginning of Jesus’ ministry. There was nothing more that Satan could do. He had done his best to stop the plan of God, to destroy the Son of God and keep the eternal souls of men locked away in a prison of sin for eternity, but Jesus had won and the war was over.