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Surprisingly, many Christians have never been told what Jesus has accomplished for them. To be sure, they know that Christ has died, and rose again, but hardly know how this incredible historical act affects them presently and in the future. As a result, some of us, when thinking about the death of Christ, either feel guilt that He would pay such a price for us, or do not know what to make of any of it at all; but it is far too wonderful to NOT know.

Jesus risen alive

So, what did Jesus do?

No You Can’t.

Ever since the Garden of Eden, we have been incapable of doing well. Having come into this world with a sinful nature (Psalm 51:5), the human heart proved to be desperately wicked (Jeremiah 17:9). In fact, when God looks down upon the earth to see if there are any who are wise, who seek after God, He finds no one (Romans 3:9-20).

Now, some may protest, “But there are so many good people in the world!” However, in response, the question is, “Good compared to who?”

To your circle of friends? Maybe.

To your family members? Sure.

But compared to a Holy, Righteous, Consuming Fire of a God who cannot stand to even look upon a single blemish? Not even close.

That is why when it seems like we are doing well, we should remember that our righteousness, that is, our good deeds, no matter how good they appear to us, are like filthy rags to God (Isaiah 64:6). For God requires PERFECT OBEDIENCE, as His eyes are too pure to even look upon sin (Habakkuk 1:13). We may, like the Israelites who stood at the foot of Sinai, boldly believe that we can obey God in our own strength (Exodus 19:8), but we will fall short, as we always have (Romans 3:23).

Yes. He did.

However, Jesus obeyed.

When the Father demanded perfect obedience, Jesus did what we could not do. He lived perfectly, obeying the Father in everything, even to the point of death on the cross (Philippians 2:6-8). He was tempted in every way, but without sin (Hebrews 4:15). He succeeded where Adam, Israel, and we failed.

Therefore, when we are in Christ, we are not treated as sinners who deserve the wrath of God. We are treated like people who have never broken the law. For God made Jesus, who never sinned, to be treated like a sinner, so that you and I would receive a righteousness that is not our own (Philippians 3:8-9), that we would become the righteousness of God (2 Corinthians 5:21).

Take a moment and let that sink in.

Your sins have been punished. It is not that God has acted like your sins have not happened. No, your sins really have been punished – all of it.

But just not on you. The wrath of God was poured out on Jesus, so that we may live; and when God opens our hearts to actually believe this, it becomes the most life-altering, earth-shattering, love-awakening truth of the universe.

Now, You Can.

Jesus did not only forgive us of our sins. He has also freed us from it as well. The Holy Spirit now works within us to sanctify us, and make us more and more like Christ as we behold Him (2 Corinthians 3:18). In other words, as we meditate on the truth of the Gospel, and depend on the finished work of Christ and not on our own ability, we are transformed. God removes our heart of stone and gives us a heart of flesh, a heart that will finally obey Him (Ezekiel 36:26-27). We begin a process where God enables us to finally obey (Philippians 2:12-13), and do His will.

And if all that were not enough.

As a result of Christ’s life, death, and resurrection, we are able to go boldly before God, as a child, and not as a slave (Hebrews 4:16). We go with more freedom than we would with our own earthly father. We go with more liberty than we do with our closest friend. For when Christ was on the cross, and loudly exclaimed, “It is finished!”, it meant that everything that needed to be done for our salvation had been done.

In other words, there is nothing that can make God love you more or love you less than He does right now. There is nothing that can make Him accept you more or accept you less. Everything that needed to be done has been done.

For Jesus has done it.

All glory and honor to Christ alone.

Discuss: Share your thoughts on how Christ’s work as influenced your life? Today, take a minute to share about this Christ’s work to someone you know.  

Next in the series: How to follow Jesus?

 

 

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