Christ Died for Us: The Redemption

"And He was crucified for our sakes, under Pontius Pilate; He suffered and was buried" (Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed A.D. 325, 381).

"When Pontius Pilate governed the province of Judea under Tiberius Caesar, Christ our Lord was nailed to a cross. Having been siezed as an evildoer, mocked, outraged and tortured in various ways, he was finally crucified (The Roman Catechism).

In obedience to His heavenly Father, Jesus Christ freely offered himself to the Father as a sacrifice for the redemption of all mankind. This redemption has three basic aspects. 1) Because Jesus is God, His sacrificial death on the cross (an outward sign of His perfect obedience) was an action of infinite moral value, and so was pleasing to God. Since it was an offering made in the name of the whole human race, this sacrifice restored mankind to God's friendship, which had been lost by sin. 2) As an an of perfect obedience which would not have taken place if man had not sinned, Jesus's death more than compensated for the damage done to the objective moral order by sin, which is disobedience of God's law. 3) Thus, Jesus's death on the cross formed the basis for a new covenant between God and man. Man's part of the covenant consists in the redemptive work of Christ, who acted on behalf of all men. (For the role played by the Virgin Mary, His Mother, see the section on Mary.) God, in return, has promised to all men an abundance of His grace. Through this grace, if we do not refuse it by sin, we receive a share in God's own life, and so become His adopted sons and daughters, co-heirs with Christ of eternal glory in heaven.