Since the creation of man and his subsequent fall through sin, God revealed His redemptive plan of mankind.  The sin of Adam was no surprise to God, for in eternity past, the Godhead, knowing all things, made provision for what would occur in time.  Scripture clearly states that … “the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world” (Rev 13:8).  In the mind of God, all was accomplished to provide salvation for mankind before his creation.  Did God intend for Adam to sin against Him?  Of course not.  Man was created perfect and in his soul was placed the aspect of choice.  He could choose to obey God or disobey.  The Genesis account reveals the negative choice exercised by God’s creation. Though was forbidden to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, Adam and Eve violated that mandate and partook of the fruit.   “When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it” (Gen 3:6).  God had warned them of the consequences of disobedience to His command -- death would occur immediately, not in the physical sense, but spiritually, alienation from God.  As a result of sin entering into creation, physical death also would eventually follow.  Mankind was in an apparent hopeless and helpless condition except for the fact that God is rich in mercy.  The Apostle Paul declares the means by which sinful man can be reconciled to God.  It would be God’s doing, not man’s… “because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions — it is by grace you have been saved” (Eph 2:4-6). It is noteworthy that the Genesis account of man’s disobedience was immediately followed by the revelation of God’s remedy for sin. “Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day” (Gen 3:8).  The LORD God would establish the only remedy for sin – the innocent dying for the guilt.  Thus, an innocent animal was sacrificed, an act that was to be perpetuated until the coming of the Lamb of God to take away the sins of the world.  Scripture reveals that the sacrificial system of worship was taught and observed by those who placed their faith in the coming Savior as symbolized in the offering of a sacrifice.  No doubt, thousands upon thousands of sacrifices occurred throughout the centuries until the day that John the Baptizer proclaimed … "Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). No longer would there be a need of animal sacrifices, for the Lamb ordained from eternity past had entered human history to provide a once for all sacrifice for sin.  The writer of the epistle to the Hebrews speaking of Christ says … “Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people. He sacrificed for their sins once for all when he offered himself” (Heb 7:27-28). The efficacy of His sacrifice was of such magnitude that the entire human race could be reconciled to God by faith in God’s provision of a Savior.  The Apostle Paul summation of this one sacrifice is found in his letter to the Christians at Corinth. “Christ was without sin, but for our sake God made him share our sin in order that in union with him we might share the righteousness of God” (2 Cor 5:21 TEV).  With that one sacrifice, the great exchange was made possible – man could exchange his unrighteousness for the righteousness of God by an act of faith in the once for all time sacrifice of Christ on the Cross.

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