Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
June 26, 1969
NUMBER 9, PAGE 11-12a

The Spotless Son Of Mary

Larry Ray Hafley

The sinless perfection of the spotless son of Mary is a puzzle to the unconverted, a problem for the unconvinced, and a promontory of confidence to the Christian. Jesus' unblemished character and unblotted conversation mark him as a miracle of mankind. All men know that "all have sinned," therefore, the challenge of Christ's purity is unique, stirring, striking, and forceful.

Was Jesus of Nazereth, "being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph" actually sinlessly perfect? If so, what affirms and attests the fact? The proofs which we want to note would be reliable testimony before any just jury, hence, we welcome your severest scrutiny.

1. Inspired prophecy taught that the Messiah would be sinless; "For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost." (II Pet. 1:21) Thus, Isaiah wrote, "All we like sheep have turned everyone to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all...And he made his grave with the wicked and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth." (Isa. 53:6,9)

2. Jesus Christ's enemies evidenced his sinlessness. In John 8:44-46, the Holy Spirit records the Lord's words to a Jewish audience, "Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is not truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar. and the father of it. And because I tell you the truth, ye believe me not. Which of you convinceth me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me?" The scathing words (Ye are of your father the devil") were concluded with a bold challenge. ("Which of you convinceth me of sin?") The word convinceth is more properly translated "convicteth" in the ASV. As it is used in John 16:8 and Titus 1:9 it means to reprove. Certainly, the Jews would have convicted Jesus of sin if they could have. Imagine how hurt was their hypocritical pride! They who fancied and featured themselves as "Abraham's seed" (Jn. 8:33) were critically cut by the stinging pungence of the Lord's rebuke. Oh, how they would love to have convicted him of sin!

If one were to appear before a sanctimonious, denominational group today, call them children of the devil and challenge them to prove that he had sinned, they would not be long in finding the evidences of sin in his life. Why, then, did not Jesus' enemies convict him? They did not because they could not, therefore, they are mute witnesses of the established fact — Jesus was sinless.

3. Judas Iscariot witnessed Christ's innocence. He who had been an intimate friend and an infamous foe of the Lord "brought again the thirty pieces of silver to the chief priests and elders, Saying, I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood." (Matt. 27:3,4) The article "the" is not in the original text, hence, Judas betrayed "innocent blood," that is, an innocent life. Who knew it better than he? Even his callous covetous thievery was pricked by his day to day knowledge of Christ's absolute purity. The guilt quickened action of sacred and secular history's most renowned betrayer affirms and confirms Christ's innocence.

4. The apostle Peter stated plainly that Jesus "did no sin" (I Pet. 2:22). Simon Peter was well qualified to speak concerning Christ's character. The gospel records reveal that he was with the Lord "in season and out of season." He was with him in the scenes of glorious splendor on the "holy mount" (Matt. 17:1-5; I Pet. 1:18), and during the agony of the garden. His association with "the man Christ Jesus" permitted him to view personal, unrecorded deeds which would allow no uncertain conclusion about Christ's relationship regarding sin. His verdict? "...Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: Who when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously" (I Pet. 2:22,23).

5. The Holy Spirit states that Jesus "knew no sin" (II Cor. 5:21). All scripture represents the revelation of the mind of God by the Spirit of God as found in the Book of God, the Bible. However, credit is here given directly to the Spirit because the apostle Paul did not know Jesus in the flesh before his ascension and the things he wrote he "neither received it of man, neither was I taught it (of man)" (Ga. 1:11,12). Thus the Holy Spirit said, "For he hath made him to be sin for us who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him." (II Cor. 5:21) ''For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities, but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin." (Heb. 4:15) "For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens" (Heb. 7:26).

God has stamped all of the above testimony with his seal of Truth. He was "well pleased' with Jesus. (Matt. 17:5) (Would he have been so with a Son who "deceiveth the people" about his sinlessness?) The irreproachable, irreprovable life of Jesus was the magnificent magnanimous glory that made his death on the cross so ignominious. Thus, the spotlessness of the divine Son of God is established by his Father, his friends, and his foes.

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