The men who were associated with Christ serve as an object lesson, as to the difference between the believer and the unbeliever, in relation to the question of sin.
Let us look at the three men.
Upon the centre cross is Christ.
Q. Is there any sin in Him? No.
A. He did no sin. (1 Peter 2:22-25 ESV)
He committed no sin, neither was deceit found in his mouth. 23 When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly. 24 He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed. 25 For you were straying like sheep, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.
B. He knew no sin.
(2 Corinthians 5:21) For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. and, In Him was no sin.
(1 John 3:5) You know that he appeared in order to take away sins, and in him there is no sin.
Q. Was there sin on Him?
A. Yes. For God made to meet upon Him the iniquity of us all.
(Isaiah 53:6) All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned—every one—to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.
Q. Was there sin in the thieves?
A. Yes. For they were, like all, conceived in sin.
(Psalm 51:5) Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.
Q. Was there sin on the thieves?
A. Yes, and no. Upon the believing thief there was no sin, for Christ was his Sin-Bearer. Upon the unbelieving thief there was sin, for he did no look to Christ for salvation from it.
|Believing Thief||Christ||Unbelieving Thief|
|Sin in him||Sin not in Him||Sin in him|
|No sin on him||Sin on Him||Sin on him|
The relation to Christ of the thieves made all the difference as to their state before God. So it is now.
They who believe in Christ have their sins borne away by Christ (1 Peter 2:24-25), and those who do not are rewarded according to their works (Revelation 20:12).
He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed. 25 For you were straying like sheep, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls. (1 Peter 2:24-25 ESV)
And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done. 13 And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead who were in them, and they were judged, each one of them, according to what they had done. (Revelation 20:12-13 ESV)
~ Author Unknown