During Christmas, we often read Matthew 1:21 and consider the reason why Jesus was born. The angel said, “He will save His people from their sins.” We have already learned that “His people” refers to all Jews and Gentiles who received Jesus as opposed to just the Jewish people. We have also already learned that Jesus saves us from not only the eternal consequences of our sins but also the current problem of sin’s control over our lives.
However, we have pretty much only looked at the principle as opposed to specific evidence in the Bible that shows what Jesus did. Were there people in NT Bible times whose lives were set free from the power of sin both current and future? I can think of several examples.
1. The paralyzed man (Luke 5:17-25)
a. Jesus forgave him (20).
b. Jesus proved he could forgive by healing him (21-24).
c. The paralyzed man was healed and forgiven (25).
2. Zachaeus (Luke 19:1-10)
a. He was known to be a sinner (7).
b. He was repentant after meeting with Jesus (8).
c. Jesus saved him (9-10).
3. The woman caught in adultery (John 8:1-12)
a. The woman was caught in the act (3-4).
b. Jesus knew about ALL of them (7-9).
c. Jesus gave the woman a second chance (10-11).
d. Jesus gave the woman a light to follow (12).
4. The thief on the cross (Luke 23:39-43)
a. The first thief mocked Jesus (39).
b. The second thief recognized his guilt (40-41).
c. The second thief asked for mercy (42).
d. Jesus promised him paradise (43).
In each of these examples, the person whom Jesus met had a sin problem.
- The paralyzed man needed to be forgiven.
- Zachaeus needed to leave his sinful lifestyle.
- The adulterous woman needed to be freed from her sin.
- The thief on the cross needed mercy.
In each of these examples, Jesus (who is the Savior) saved the person from sin.
- The paralyzed man lived a joyful life both healed and forgiven by God.
- Zachaeus lived a joyful life, repaid those he wronged, and left his sin.
- The adulterous woman was given a second chance to leave her sin.
- The thief on the cross repented of his sin and found paradise.
Just as Isaiah 7:14 was fulfilled in the birth of Jesus, so Matthew 1:21 was fulfilled in the life and ministry of Jesus. He saved these people from their current sin problem and gave them hope for eternity as well.
Today, we know many people who do not know the Lord. They, like us, have a sin problem that cannot be helped with money, pleasure, alcohol, or drugs. While they may look good on the outside, deep down they have a problem that can only be solved by Jesus. They need to know what Jesus can do for them. Will you tell them about the Savior who saves people from their sins?