"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." (2 Corinthians 5:21)
In 2008, I received a massive revelation of great joy. I thank Joyce Meyer big time for this revelation, since she first pointed to me the verse quoted above.
In Christ Jesus, we are not just righteous, but we are made THE righteousness of God. We have His standard of righteous standing. We can never be condemned, for now we stand in the same blessed joy and favor of God's own Son!
Where I began to have problems, however, was that I felt that I had to hold onto this status of righteousness. I was believing that I had to do certain things in order to "maintain" this status of righteousness.
I also did not understand how I could be righteous, even when I was struggling with sins, bad habits, dark secrets, etc.
Righteousness is an identity, a new identity. In fact, Paul made that abundantly clear four verse prior:
"Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new." (2 Corinthians 5:17)
When you are a new creation, you are no longer an old creation. You cannot go back to being that old creation, either.
Other voices, other contentions that I struggled with included:
1. How am I supposed to live?
2. What if I am doing the wrong thing?
3. What will happen to me tomorrow?
4. What is the point of being alive, since everything is taken care of?
The real problem was that I was halting between two opinions. I did not understand the Gospel of Grace one bit. I did not understand that all of my sins are forever forgiven AND that I receive His life, Jesus, in myself:
"When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory." (Colossians 3:4)
Jesus provides everything for me. I am not alone in this life. I do not have to figure things out on my own. Even if I fail, fall, or frustrate, I know that He is taking care of me.
Today, those questions no longer bother me. There is no worries about tomorrow, because who I am is not going to change. I am in Christ, and as He is, so am I in this world. (1 John 4:17). He will never leave me nor forsake me (Hebrews 13:5), and therefore there is nothing that I can or cannot do that will change my status in Him.
Yet another question would often pose itself to me: "What is to stop you from doing the wrong thing?"
The answer has been abundantly provided to me through the blessed ministry of Pastor Joseph Prince. Here are the verses:
"11For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, 12Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; 13Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; 14Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works." (Titus 2:11-14)
Grace is a teacher. In fact, Grace is The Teacher, for Jesus is Grace Personified:
"For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ." (John 1:17)
And Christ is my righteousness, too (1 Corinthians 1:30)
This is not a life of striving and toil. Indeed, this is a life of resting and receiving. AMEN!
"For if by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ." (Romans 5:17)
I am not trying to live this life on my own. This life is His life in me, and I reign in life with Christ Jesus!
All of this was not clear to me for so many years, because I had received so much terrible baggage and bad ideas from my parents. They were both under law, they both did not know the Gospel of Grace, they were so seeped in "I do my part, and then God will do His part." How wrong they were.
This mixed message "Gospel" is not the Gospel truth, and no one should fall for it. No one.
Either we are saved by grace, or we are saved by works. Either Jesus did it all, or He did nothing at all. He does not play second fiddle to our efforts, and we do not get to claim any pre-eminence in our part to keep ourselves.
The status of righteousness is something that He gives me, that He is in me and for me, that no one can take away. Thank you, Lord Jesus! Amen!
The problem was that I had all kinds of mixed messages and messaging. It's only recently that I have understood that there is not one thing that I must do or maintain or anything else.
My Daddy God is a God to me, because His Son has paid for all my unrighteousness. and therefore God does not remember my sins or inquities any longer.