Can God die? Can God become human being? What caused him die? If God can be put to death, can he save the world from its final destruction? These are a few questions being asked so often.
Let us examine and look on to the Biblical perspective.
Adam and Eve were created after God created every thing. And God put then in the Garden of Eden. Then God said, “I will give every seed bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruits with seed in it, that will be yours for your food” (Gen. 1:28). God’s original arrangement of food for human was vegetables. The flesh of clean animal was given to eat under one condition from the patriarchal time of Noah.
The fall of human under Satan’s temptations found in Gen., chapter 3. God said, “You are free to eat fruit from all trees except from the middle of the Garden, you must not eat and you must not touch, or will surely die” Gen 2:16;3:1-3 NIV). The negative words EVIL and DIE appear ever first in the Genesis 2:9, 17
Now, the Devil in the form of Serpent tempted Eve with his ingenuity and inducement whereby the fall of Adam and Eve took place dramatically. Albeit, they ate the forbidden fruit, they did not die instantly but both died spiritually the day they ate the fruits. Death comes sooner or later to any one who disobeys the command of God.
There is no account in the Bible that the forbidden fruit has been made clean and permissible to eat again. For God, clean food and unclean animals are the same in the past, now and in the days to come. When God declared clean and unclean, no prophets neither NT writers can make it unclean or make it clean again.
Adam and Eve broke the holy Law of God. As a result, sin reigned in their life. For the Scripture says, “…Sin is Lawlessness” (1 John 3:4). And any one who commits sin shall be put to death. Because God said, “the wages of sin is death” (Rom 6:23) Owing to Adam’s sin, death comes to all creations. St. Paul says, “For sin death come through a man (Adam) …, for us in Adam all die… (1 Cor 15:21,22). Therefore, all creatures are subjected to death. However, this death is not the end there. For God had a plan of Redemption. Beyond this death, eternal/salvation is awaited for those who know God and obey his precepts. Adam and eve transgressed the holy law of God. And thus, the broken law of God demanded the life of sinner. But the sacrifice of a sinner life cannot in any way satisfy the claim of God’s immutable law. Because God’s law is as sacred as himself. But many claimed or declared that the Ten Commandments of God spoken by himself and were written by his own finger is no more important. The Psalmist says, “All his Commandments are sure. They stand fast for ever and ever” (Psalm 119:89; 111:7.8)
To redeem the sinful world, and to purify the blighted and cursed creation, someone who is equal with God is needed. In the O.T. times, God allowed the patriarchs and priest to sacrifice clean animals such as lambs, goats pigeons and bulls etc for the remission of the sins. But this animal sacrifices is the type foretelling that antitypes sacrifice (Christ’s death) would be done on the cross ultimately.” In fact, the law required with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness”
“The blood of goats and bulls and ashes of a heifer sprinkled on those who are ceremonially unclean sanctify them so that they are outwardly clean (Heb 9:22;9:13). As noted earlier, the blood of animals is a typified sacrifice. Hence, the Bible clearly says in Heb 9:14 “How much more, then will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal spirit cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death…
God would have sent a sinless being of heaven to save the world or could have made an alternative plan by exercising his almighty power to redeem the sinners. But he did not allow angel to replace his place. Because the fallen man cannot be restored again into his likeness unless the son of God, who made the universe, make an atonement for him. So in order to meet this needs, God was to be manifested in Christ “reconciling the world to himself in Christ not counting man’s sins against them (2 Cor. 5:19) “who being is very nature God, did not consider equally with God something to be grasped, but made himself nothing, take the nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man he humbled himself and become obedient to death – even death on the Cross (Philippians 2:6-9)
If the Ten Commandments of God could be changed, man might have been saved without the sacrifice of Christ. Since God’s law is immutable, it was necessary for Christ to give his life for the fallen race.
The birth and death of Christ is foretold in OT and NT. The Psalmist says, “Dog have compassed me: the assemble of the wicked have enclosed me; they pierced my hands and feet. I may tell all my bones; they look and stare upon me. They part my garments among them, and cast lots upon my vesture” (Psalm 22:16-18 cf. Luke 23:34 last part)
In another prophecy it is declared, “Reproach had broken my heart; and I am full of heaviness: and I looked for some to take pity, but there was none; and for comforter, but I found none, they gave me also gall for meat; and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink” (Psalm 69:20,21).
When Jesus was about to breath last, he was given gall which is a biter and poisonous liquid. This kind of liquid is a stupefying potion to make insense or to deaden the sense of pain. When Jesus tasted it, he refused it.
In NT, it says, “When the fullness of the time come, God sent forth his son… to redeem that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons (Gal 4:4,5). He lived a life of sinless, he revealed himself as the creator of all things. To know the meaning of death is immensely important for all sinners. Redemption work was accomplished and completed on the Cross. His death on the Cross is not a fictitious story neither Utopian event.
The eternal ruin that has come into human race from Adam’s transgression is to be reconciled and atonement be made through the death of Christ. “…That he might sanctify the peoples with his own blood…” (Heb 13:12)
The Bible recorded that Christ died in a place called Calvary. Calvary is just beyond the boundaries of Jerusalem. Upon arriving of execution, Jesus was bound to the instrument of torture. Jesus had been humiliated, insulted, mocked, and twice tortured to the utmost degree. This was incomprehensible. In another word the depiction of Christ’s suffering in “Passion of Christ” of Mel Gibson’s visual movie is just a bit that is shown of his suffering.
One of the prolific Christian writers penned down in this way, “his hands stretched upon the cross; the hammer and the nails were brought, and spikes were driven through the tender flesh, then the heart-stricken disciples bore away from the cruel scene. When the soldiers were putting Jesus to torture, and his enemies were doing their fearful work, Jesus prayed for his enemies, “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do”. What a forgiveness Christ rendered for them!
The death of Christ was not because of the torture. It is the weight of the sins and guilt of the whole world that killed him as the Scripture says “the wages of sin death” Jesus cried, “It is finished,” “Father, unto thy hands I comment my spirit”. A light encircled the cross, and the face of the savior shone with glory like the sun. He then bowed his head upon his breast, and DIED for you and me.