Colossians 2:14, ‘He cancelled the record of debt that stood against us, with its legal demands; this He set aside, nailing it to the cross.’
‘Nailing it to the cross.’ This is crucifixion language…Paul sees no tension whatsoever in affirming that Jesus Christ is the image of God, the Ruler of Creation, the Source and Goal of all things, the Reconciler of the Cosmos (1:15-20), and that His body of flesh—the very body in which He makes cosmic reconciliation—is impaled by nails upon the wood of the cross. These two radical visions are welded together and sing harmoniously in the Apostle’s mind.
And consider the vision that Paul creates for us here…our record of debt is removed how? It is nailed to the cross…and yet, what, exactly, is nailed to the cross? Is it a literal list of sins? No—it is Christ Jesus Himself. I think we can see here an application of Isaiah 53. If Jesus, as the Suffering Servant, truly bears the sins of His people, then He Himself *becomes* the record of our debt…He *becomes* our sins—2 Cor.5:21.
Thus, as His body is transfixed to the cross by Roman nails, truly the entire record of *our debt* is nailed to the tree IN HIM…Here is a mystery….but it is true to say that the sin of God’s people is finally and supremely borne in the flesh of God’s Son—in God’s own flesh. The sordid record of my rebellion is etched into the tablet of His feet, His palms, His brow, His side, His pierced and shattered heart. The Lord’s Broken Body becomes the ledger of His Bride’s rebellion…
And as that ledger, He Himself is lifted up into the Firestorm of Immaculate Wrath, bearing and so declaring the full reality of divine fury against our sin…and yet, bearing this not in spite or disgust or disinterested obedience, but in *love*…In love, such that—borne in the body of the slain and risen Lord—every record of our rebellion, every hammer blow of wrath, every searing flame of Hell itself becomes to believing soul the articulation of her true name: ‘Beloved’…A name heard only in the echoes of that other and more supreme Name spoken from the cross, the Name of God known only to His blood-washed Bride: ‘Love’ (1 Jn 4:8,10).