What if Jesus had not come to save us?

April 1, 2022

Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the father except through me. — John 14:6

What if Christ Jesus, born of a virgin, had not come to save our souls, where would we be? It is an interesting thought-problem to contemplate. If Jesus had not come to save us, would there be a Bible, since much of the Old Testament forecasted Jesus’ birth, death and resurrection.

If Jesus, and the salvation he would bring by laying down his life, wasn’t part God’s plan, would Noah have had to build an ark to save mankind after the flood? But there is another, deeper question. If Jesus wasn’t in God’s salvation plan for humankind, would that mean that God did not love us? Would there have been a need for John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life”? Without Jesus, would there be an “eternal life” for us? Put differently, would there be hope?
If Jesus had not willfully come to lay down his life for us, would there have been disciples? Disciples of whom? No Matthew. No Mark. No John. No Simon Peter. No Andrew, James or Phillip. No Bartholomew, Thaddaeus or Judas or Simon or James. They may have all existed, but would they have become “fishers of men,” to follow who? On this rock I will build my church would never have been spoken and the fate of the sinful in Corinth, Damascus, Jerusalem and the rest of the earth, would have been covered in darkness.
Would there have been the need for God to develop the linage of David or make promises to Abraham? Would there have been a need for the Ten Plagues to force Pharoah to let his people go, if the only place to go was damnation without the hope of Jesus on the horizon?
And if Jesus wasn’t in the picture and not a part of God’s plan to redeem us, wouldn’t God have been justified to jettison Adam and Eve and start over? Cain wouldn’t have killed Abel; Joseph wouldn’t have been sold into slavery by his brothers and rise to a position to save his family’s lives in Egypt. Daniel wouldn’t have had to enter the Lion’s Den, nor would Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, been thrown into the fiery furnace by Nebuchadnezzar. And there would have been no need to explain Mary’s pregnancy to Joseph.
If Jesus were never born to reconcile us with his father, there would not have been a Moses or Passover. The Red Sea would not have parted. Paul and the other disciples would not have been jailed, persecuted and killed. Nor would there have been a Lazarus, or the woman with issues and Jairus’s daughter would not have been brought back to life. And what of the snake?
God could have immediately sent him to eternal torment and not have had to put up with his treatment of Job or his attempts to temp Christ, nor would he have seen his son suffer on the cross.
By thinking about “What If Jesus didn’t come to save us?” it should remind us how central Jesus is in the entire scope of our existence and universe that’s tied to his sacrifice. We would have the same questions laid out in the old gospel song, “Where Would I be Without Jesus?”

“When my burdens get heav y, I just kneel down and pray I ask God to work ’em out, not mine, but his own way Safe in his arms, what a relief For without Jesus, where would I be? Where would I be without Jesus? Where would I spend eternity? Lost in a world full of sorrow Without Jesus, where would I be?”