"Do you think that I like to see wicked people die? says the Sovereign Lord. Of course not! I want them to turn from their wicked ways and live." -Ezekiel 18:23
As a Christian, I have often wondered why people had to die in the Old Testament. It seemed so harsh -- why couldn't they just have been forgiven?
What I didn't realize was that Jesus had not yet come to die. There was not yet any power of redemption on the earth. If people committed a sin, they would be subject to judgment, which many times meant death. But God didn't want people to die -- He wanted them to live. Jesus' death meant we didn't have to die for our own sins. Instead, He had come to die for us, on our behalf.
How powerful is that! Think for a moment -- the way the world had been set up until Jesus was such that people did have to die for their sins -- otherwise the entire community would be affected, much like a spiritual plague. Since survival of the community was essential, the people who had committed the most offending sins had to be put to death. It was harsh, but it was the punishment our sins deserved.
But since Jesus came to the earth to die, we don't have to face death anymore for our sins when we ask for forgiveness in Jesus' name. He took care of that. His death meant that sin wouldn't have a hold on us any more if we repented and asked Him to be Lord of our life. This is why the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ was such a life-changing and monumental event for the Jews -- and for you and me.
Have you had a revelation of Jesus' resurrection power in your life? Pray that God would give you a greater revelation of this, and that He would help you to walk in strength and power because of this redemption life He has given us.
"I am the resurrection and the life. Anyone who believes in me will live, even after dying." -John 11:25