Jesus as the perfect sinner’s substitute is played out throughout the Scriptures. He was to take the place of a sinful race and bear the death penalty that hanged on the entire fallen human race.
It was through this substitutionary work that sinners were going to be justified judged and declared free, even though they deserved to die. Yes, through Jesus, sinners who were condemned to die are freely declared innocent.
We saw this eternal plan of God prophetically typified when Barabbas who was a condemned sinner was acquitted and discharged while Righteous, Sinless, and Holy Jesus was killed in his place. “Pilate…went out again unto the Jews, and saith unto them, I find in him no fault at all. But ye have a custom, which I should release unto you one at the Passover: will ye therefore that I release unto you the King of the Jews? Then cried they all again, saying, Not this man, but Barabbas.
Now Barabbas was a robber.” John 18:38-40 – Barabbas, who was a robber a sinner and deserved to die was legally and absolutely set free because Jesus took his place and borne his punishment.
It was legal for Barabbas to be made free because the process that warranted his liberty was enforceable by law; it was in conformity with the Laws of the land; by law, one condemned person was to be set free by the choice of the Jews. That’s Grace!
God made sure that this event happened just before Jesus died to foreshadow how Jesus Christ was to become the perfect substitute of Barabbas, who was a type of a sinful and condemned human race, so that through His substitutionary work, those who believe in Him might walk away legally yet freely justified, declared innocent by faith in Christ Jesus.
Just as Barabbas afterwards walked away freely and legally declared not guilty, even so, now men who were once condemned to die walk around freely justified.
Not because they have been good in themselves, but because out of love, another man, Jesus Christ took our place on legal grounds. Barabbas was legally set free and therefore no man could condemn him afterwards; so are we. He was to walk around freely in peace: “Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God”