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Jesus' descending into hell provides rich comfort for His people. The Heidelberg Catechism describes this comfort in the following way:

HEIDELBERG CATECHISM: Q. AND A. 44

Q. Why is there added, "He descended into hell"?
A. That in my greatest temptations, I may be assured, and wholly comfort myself in this, that my Lord Jesus Christ, by His inexpressible anguish, pains, terrors, and hellish agonies, in which He was plunged during all His sufferings, but especially on the cross, hath delivered me from the anguish and torments of hell.

Savingly convicted sinners know that they deserve God's wrath and eternal punishment in hell. To such, Jesus' descent into hell is a most precious doctrine. It speaks of their glorious deliverance through Christ.

Is this your personal desire, need, and expectation?


CHRIST'S STEPS OF EXALTATION

God's justice is pure and perfect; it requires both eternal death for the guilty and eternal life for the innocent. As the great Sinbearer and Substitute for His sinful people, God's justice required Jesus' humiliation. He had to bear God's full wrath against sin; He had to die a three-fold death.

After Christ fully paid sin's death sentence and perfectly kept God's law, God's justice required His exaltation. He had fully earned the right to eternal life and glorification.

God's Church is amazed by, and loves Christ in, both His states. In His humiliation, Jesus' deep, faithful, sacrificial love for them transcends their understanding. In His exaltation, God's people delight to praise and glorify His majesty and greatness. Both states of their Savior move the hearts of His children to praise!

Is Jesus Christ your heart's song of praise?

To a sinner who experientially knows his own hell-worthiness, why is the doctrine of Jesus' descent into hell most precious?





 

For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

- Romans 6:23

For Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law, That the man which doeth those things shall live by them.

- Romans 10:5

But made Himself of no reputation, and took upon Him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men;

And being found in fashion as a man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.

Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a Name which is above every name.

- Philippians 2:7-9

 

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