If God is a God of love and forgiveness, why can’t God forgive sin without a sacrifice of blood? If God is a God of Justice, then how can it be just for Jesus to die for my sins? What I am really really struggling with why it is that, if God is Love, why was it necessary for Jesus to be sacrificed for humanity to be given a path of salvation to God? If nothing is impossible for God, then why couldn’t a God of Love forgive freely without the the sacrifice of Jesus?
It is not God’s love that demands a sacrifice. It is his holiness which requires a sacrifice and it is his justice that requires death for sin. Romans 6:23 says that “The wages of sin are death.” This is God’s justice, not his love that this statement is coming from. God’s justice is a powerful and real as his love. His love provided a substitutionary sacrifice so that we do not need to die for our sins. All of the qualities that God has he has infinitely. His love is immense and unavoidable, but so are his holiness and justice. You cannot have one without the other two.
Some people say that nothing is impossible for God. That is definitely not true. It is impossible for God to do something that violates his character. It is impossible for God to be unjust. It is impossible for God to behave in an unholy way. It is impossible for God to not love us.
Here is how salvation works, as far as we find it in the Bible. God’s love desires a relationship with us. God’s holiness can have nothing to do with sin. Sin must be atoned for. God’s justice demands punishment for rebellion. God’s justice demands one thing. His love desires another. God’s solution was to send his Son to take the penalty for our sins. Is that logical? No. It is all about love. Romans 2:23-26 says it best. God sent his Son as a sacrifice so as to be just and at the same time to justify those who have faith in Jesus Christ. The death of Jesus was not about love. It was about justice, but the reason it happened was because of God’s love.
I can see that this is not completely “logical” to you. I understand why it does not seem logical. It is not “logical” that Jesus would take the penalty for the sin of another. It is not about logic. It is about God’s holiness, his justice and his love. These three traits came together at the cross and, for those who obey Him and put their faith in Jesus, God’s love trumps his justice and Jesus takes the penalty for our sin. I can see why you might struggle with this concept but it is the truth as revealed in God’s inspired Word–the Bible. This is the Good News. This is the gospel. Romans 5 tells us that God loved us while we were still sinners–while we were enemies due to our sin. That is the mystery. It is about God’s love.