Article 21: The Atonement
We believe that Jesus Christ is a high priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek—made such by an oath— and that he presented himself in our name before his Father, to appease his Father’s wrath with full satisfaction by offering himself on the tree of the cross and pouring out his precious blood for the cleansing of our sins, as the prophets had predicted.
For it is written that “the punishment that made us whole” was placed on the Son of God and that “by his bruises we are healed.” He was “like a lamb that is led to the slaughter”; he was “numbered with the transgressors”46 and condemned as a criminal by Pontius Pilate, though Pilate had declared that he was innocent.
So he paid back what he had not stolen,47 and he suffered— “the righteous for the unrighteous,”48 in both his body and his soul— in such a way that when he sensed the horrible punishment required by our sins “his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down on the ground.”49 He cried, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”50 And he endured all this for the forgiveness of our sins.
Therefore we rightly say with Paul that we know nothing “except Jesus Christ, and him crucified”;51 we “regard everything as loss
because of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus [our] Lord.”52 We find all comforts in his wounds and have no need to seek or invent any other means to reconcile ourselves with God
than this one and only sacrifice, once made, which renders believers perfect forever. This is also why the angel of God called him Jesus— that is, “Savior”— because he would save his people
from their sins.53
46Isa. 53:4-1247Ps. 69:4481 Pet. 3:1849Luke 22:4450Matt. 27:46511 Cor. 2:252Phil. 3:853Matt. 1:21
Belgic Confession (Written in 1569)
Psalm 46:10 “Be still, and know that I am God;
Matthew 11:28 (NIV) “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest
Isaiah 53:4–6 (NIV) Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering, yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted. 5 But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed. 6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.
Psalm 69:4b (NIV) I am forced to restore what I did not steal.
1 Peter 3:18 (NIV) For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive in the Spirit.
1 Corinthians 2:2 (NIV) For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.
Philippians 3:8–11 (NIV) 8 What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ 9 and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ—the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith. 10 I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11 and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.