Message for October 20, 2013 from Pastor Jerry

“For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” II Cor. 5:21(NKJV)

       “I am covered over with the robe of righteousness that Jesus gave to me.  He gave to me.  I am covered over with the precious blood of Jesus that He shed for me.  Shed for me. Oh, what joy it is to know my heavenly Father loves me so and gave to me–my Jesus.  And when He looks at me, He sees not what I used to be, but He sees Jesus.”  These are words to a song we sang here for years.  It is based on scripture references from Isaiah and other places.  By singing this we were confessing that our sins have been taken by Jesus, and we have received His sinless righteousness.  We sang it, but do we believe it?

       Am I righteous?  If so, why and how?  Am I unrighteous?  If so, why and how?  I am righteous either by my works or Jesus’ shed blood.  You can never work your way into being righteous, and you cannot make yourself unrighteous by your works.  If you have accepted “The Great Exchange,” you are righteous (in right standing with God).  If you haven’t, then you are unrighteous no matter what else you may have done.

       The Bible says it is not possible to cleanse from sin without the shedding of blood. (Heb. 9:22)  But it also says, “For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins. Heb. 10:4(NKJV) Only by the removal of sin can one be declared righteous. Truth is that the blood of animals only covered the sin temporarily and had to be repeated every year.  The blood of Jesus removes the sin completely and makes one clean (righteous).  “So Christ was offered ONCE to bear the sins of many.” Heb. 9:28(NKJV) He finished the sin offering by shedding His own blood for the sins of mankind.

       It was the will of God that man be made righteous by the work of Jesus.  “By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.” Heb. 10:10(NKJV) Furthermore, it says, But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God from that time waiting till His enemies are made His footstool.  For by one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified (set apart).” Heb. 10:12-14(NKJV)  We are righteous because of what Jesus did.  We believe ourselves righteous (Rom. 10:10).  You can’t make your self righteous, but you can believe you are righteous.  Quit trying to do something that has already been done and start believing you are righteous.

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