Imagine that you borrowed $15,000,000 from a bank. Further imagine that you’re in a bad situation financially and now you’ve run out of time to pay back your loan. The bank is going to take your house, your car, everything you own, and you’ll be left out on the street all by yourself.
Now, your very good friend has heard of your plight and wants to do something about it. He decides to sell everything he owns to help you pay back your loan. He gives you the money, not expecting anything in return and pays back your loan in full. He’s the one who lost everything now fending for himself out on the street.
And, as if that wasn’t enough, your friend gives even more to you so that you can get back on your feet financially; so that you can live in comfort, so to speak, all while he wanders the streets barely getting by.
How does this illustrate Christ’s sacrifice? Let’s see.
The money that you couldn’t pay back is symbolic of our problem, sin. Being in a bad place financially shows the sad state of our lives as slaves of sin. The bank, or Satan, is coming to take everything you own, or simply what makes you an individual; your life and soul.
Your very good friend is, of course, Jesus Christ. He came to save us from our plight, sin. The money that He gives is His life in place of yours. He gave the ultimate price, His life (not to mention His deity), and takes your place, the fate you rightfully deserved.
And if that isn’t enough Christ also adds to us His righteousness. Your friend getting you in a position to provide for yourself is a beautiful illustration. Christ doesn’t leave us at a breakeven, teetering on the edge of sinner and saint. He bestows upon us His righteousness so that we are righteous in God’s view.