So, I'm learning new things as I approach middle age.
For all of my life, I've heard that Jesus died for my sins. He died to take them away. Only recently did I discover there was more. I've come to learn that he also gives me his perfect righteousness. How could I have missed this teaching? I found and studied the word IMPUTATION about a year ago and now I feel much better about my standing with Jesus. I would encourage others to look into not only what God takes away but what he gives.
Salvation in the old testament times was by works, I was also taught. I was taught wrong or else was not listening to carefully. “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him for righteousness” Genesis 15:6.
Praise be to God that you have discovered the truth in Scripture that God did indeed pay for our sin through the imputed work of Christ! Another word that you may want to study is "propitiation" as found in Rom 3:25. It simply means that the blood of Christ appeased the wrath of God. Like imputation, it's an "active" verb that does not involve the will of man, but rather only the will of God.
I like to tell this story as an example of how God's sovereign grace works... Let's say one day you decide to go to the best steakhouse in town but purposely leave your wallet at home so that you cannot pay the check. You order the juiciest steak on the menu and eat it. When the bill comes to your table, you say that you are unable to pay. At this point the owner comes to your table and demands what is due him. He threatens to have you thrown in jail. But just as the owner is ready to call the cops, his son pulls out his own wallet and pays the check on your behalf. The bill is now paid in full and you are free to go. So despite the fact that you had fully intended to cheat the restaurant out of what it was due by purposely leaving your wallet at home, the owner and his son took care of the problem among themselves without any demands on you. All you received out of the deal was a great steak dinner.
This is how the Bible paints the picture of God's love for us. Paul puts it this way in Ephesians 2: 1-10...
And you were dead in the trespasses and sins 2 in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— 3 among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. 4 But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, 5 even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— 6 and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7 so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.0 0 0 0 0 0 0
I have been helping my sister's family move across country. I've had no time for the internet lately. Thank you Todd and Dan for the good words. I don't know how I missed the imputation doctrine. It was not emphasized or else it went over my head.
Growing up, we used to sing a hymn called Christ the Solid Rock. It mentioned being "clothed in his righteousness alone. Faultless to stand before the throne." Until recently, I never understood the meaning but now I do. Having all my sins taken away today is not enough. Because I will surely sin again tomorrow. His righteousness is the answer. Praise his name!0 0 0 0 0 0 0