Thursday, August 11, 2016

Devotion: Jesus Is Your Righteousness

Recently, we discussed the ministry of reconciliation; the renewing of that relationship that existed with the original man before his fall from God’s grace.  In that discussion we found that “God was in Christ reconciling the world unto himself” (II Corinthians 5:17-19).  As God reconciled us back unto himself, he also did one incredible thing for us that many are not aware of; “He no longer imputed our sins against us.”  Did you hear what we just said?  Almighty God, the one many believers call “Abba Father,” no longer counts our sins against us.  How incredible is that?  But how is this possible?

“So by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous” (Romans 5:19).  “…by man came also the resurrection of the dead. … even so in Christ shall all be made alive” (I Corinthians 15:21-22).

By one man’s obedience, many have been given the opportunity to be made righteous.  By one man’s obedience, many have been given the opportunity to be made alive.

“For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him” (II Corinthians 5:21).

God offers to impute the righteousness of Christ to the account of a believer, making that person’s record as good or as perfect as the record of Jesus Christ.  God offers to take all of your sins and placed them into Jesus, who knew no sin and in place of your sins, God offers to place the righteousness of Jesus Christ in you.  Yes, that’s right.  Instead of imputing your sins against you, God is imputing the righteousness of Jesus in its place.  Again, how incredible is that?

“Now do you see it?  No one can ever be made right in God’s sight by doing what the law commands.  For the more we know of God’s laws, the clearer it becomes that we aren’t obeying them; his laws serve only to make us see that we are sinners.  But now God has shown us a different way to heaven—not by “being good enough” and trying to keep his laws, but by a new way (though not new, really, for the Scriptures told about it long ago).  Now God says he will accept and acquit us—declare us “not guilty”—if we trust Jesus Christ to take away our sins.  And we all can be saved in this same way, by coming to Christ, no matter who we are or what we have been like.  Yes, all have sinned; all fall short of God’s glorious ideal; yet now God declares us “not guilty” of offending him if we trust in Jesus Christ, who in his kindness freely takes away our sins.  For God sent Christ Jesus to take the punishment for our sins and to end all God’s anger against us.  He used Christ’s blood and our faith as the means of saving us from his wrath.  In this way he was being entirely fair, even though he did not punish those who sinned in former times.  For he was looking forward to the time when Christ would come and take away those sins.  And now in these days also he can receive sinners in this same way because Jesus took away their sins.  But isn’t this unfair for God to let criminals go free, and say that they are innocent?  No, for he does it on the basis of their trust in Jesus who took away their sins” (Romans 3:20-26 TLB).

God has taken away your sins and given you the opportunity to have right standing with him.  God has made it possible for you to be righteous in his sight, not by obeying “the law,” which served only to show you that you were a sinner, but by trusting in what Jesus Christ accomplished on the cross.  When you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and savior, you become “the righteousness of God in Jesus Christ” or because of Jesus Christ.  Because of the cross, Jesus Christ was able to take away your sins, end all separation from God, and give you right standing with God.  Now you know that “Jesus is your righteousness.”  How incredible is that?

As always, we give thanks and glory to God for his wisdom and understanding.  We are so blessed to be able to share with you, those things that God has placed in our hearts.  We continue to pray that the accompanying inspirational message will be a blessing to each of you and that you will be the better for having read it.  If you are blessed by what has been provided, please feel free to share so that others may be blessed as well; for as freely as our Father has given this to us, we freely give so that others may share in the love and be blessed.  Amen.

Enjoy your blessings - KW

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