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For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin,
so that we could be made right with God through Christ.
- 2 Corinthians 5:21
When you accidentally knock over your friend’s matcha latte, you buy her another one to make it right. When you unfortunately shrink your mom’s sweater in the dryer, you buy her a new one to replace it. When you make a dent on your neighbor’s car, you give him a check (or go through your car insurance) to pay for the damage.
These are all relevant examples of “making it right” in human relationships, but God works a little differently.
When we were made right with God, He decided to do this even though we had wronged Him the whole time. Our change in behavior doesn’t come first. God decided to send Jesus down to die that we may be declared righteous (i.e. made right) before Him. Therefore, we are now free to live knowing that we are not under any kind of guilty verdict.
We don’t have to live ashamed of our mistakes or our past, thinking that somehow we are disqualified from being part of God’s Kingdom. As the righteousness of God, we have to remember that it is a divine gift that speaks a lot more about who God is than about who we are. Our choices, behaviors, and words must reflect God’s heart. But when we leave our old lives to pick up the cross, we acknowledge that it is faith and not works that qualifies us.
Moreover, our actions demonstrate the transforming power of God’s grace and His work in our lives. Upon encountering the risen Christ, we don’t leave unchanged.
Do we see people experiencing homelessness in our cities? Do we allow ourselves to remain blind to discriminatory acts in workplaces, neighborhoods, and schools? Our eyes are opened when we see the world through God’s eyes. There are people He wants to lift up and He wants us to be part of change in the world while he also calls us to look deeply within ourselves.
Reflecting on a personal level, we see our areas of fault. We recognize the struggle of selfishness and God’s call for us to be generous and filled with grace. We find ourselves getting angry and frustrated when things feel out of control, when His design is for us to take upon His peace and to see a situation differently.
Being the righteousness of God sounds like a lot of work, but He already did all the heavy lifting. He made us right with Him by sending Jesus to die, rising up to give us new life as well. Now all we have to do is ask Him to give us faith and to show us how we can be part of building His Kingdom.
1. What mistakes or actions have made you feel unworthy of God’s Kingdom?
2. How does knowing that God has made us right with Him empower you to live differently?
3. Who is God calling you to serve? Is there a person, a group of people, or an organization that God is calling you towards?
Father God, You have given us new life through Jesus. You have declared us to be made right with You now and forever. Thank You for loving us enough to come near us no matter what we have done. There is a calling You have placed on my life and I want to live that out. Help me to continue drawing near that I may also bring others to You.
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