Blessed is the Man to Whom the Lord Will Not Impute Sin
by Heshimu Colar
“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–II Cor 5:21.”
God is saving His elect by IMPUTATION. Imputation is God reckoning to your account what Someone else has done, and God reckoning what you have done to Someone else’s. God imputes the obedience of Jesus Christ equally to all of His elect and looks upon us as the ones who obeyed. AND God reckons that everything sinful we have done and will do was actually committed by the Lord Jesus Christ. This is why He punished His Son on the Cross. IMPUTATION is the Innocent Son of God being made guilty, and the guilty given His innocence. This is the only Gospel that glorifies God and gives hope to the truly guilty.
IMPUTATION demanded the death of the God-Man. God didn’t simply ‘say’ that Jesus Christ took our sins. He, by necessity, became One like us and suffered for us. IMPUTATION satisfies God’s justice because the exchange of guilt for righteousness is from one human being to another Human Being. Imputation is similar to a change of garments, but the garments must FIT both parties. Christ garments of obedience are justly exchanged for our sin-stained garments of disobedience because He took upon Himself the form of a man and became subject to His own Law. Now, He can obey for those who are flesh and bone like Him, and He can take upon Himself the transgressions of those like Him. As eternal God, the garment of our sin could not fit upon Christ. Therefore, The Son of God is made the Son of Man and the exchange completely honors God’s justice. “Wherefore in all things it behooved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people (Heb 2:17 & 2:9-18).”
ONLY God manifested in the flesh, the Lord Jesus Christ, could do righteousness accepted by God. You and I have never and can never do any righteousness of our own. What is righteousness? Righteousness is doing, not trying to do, or saying you ought to do, but actually doing what is absolutely perfect all the time. But “God looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, that did seek God. Every one of them is gone back: they are altogether become filthy; there is none that doeth good, no, no one (Ps 53:2).” Therefore, God, by His Grace, reckoned the obedience of Christ to be our own. Christ obeyed His Father perfectly from the heart. Even while enduring the wrath of God on the Cross, His cry “My God my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” was uttered in absolute loving obedience. The Wonder of Grace is that He did this for others. Everything He did, God imputes to our account and declares we actually did it. This is the only righteousness God accepts, and everyone who brings any other merit shall be found a transgressor at the Judgment and cast into hell.
Only God manifested in the flesh could satisfy His judgment against sin. Our efforts at improvement only increase our sin. We cannot fix what we’ve broken, and God is not accepting anything you could ever do to atone for the sins you have already committed. People talk about walking an isle to atone for their sins, saying a prayer, or trying to keep the Law next time, but NONE of these things does anything but heap self-righteousness on top of transgressions. God is no monster or fool who would send His Only Begotten to the Cross if there was anything you or I could do at anytime to cover one transgression. God could only find pleasure or the satisfaction of His justice, in the death of His own Son. O and bless God! He has satisfied HIMSELF in the death of Christ! “Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand (Is 53:10).” By Grace, God charged ALL of our sins to Jesus Christ and punished Him as the worst of all transgressors. Christ was bearing the sins of all of God’s elect, and He bore them as His very own. He had no iniquity in Himself, but He became guilty for our sakes. Therefore, He did not answer His accusers and died without argument. “He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth.”
Only IMPUTATION satisfies Grace. If you lift a finger to do anything to satisfy God, and He accepts anything you’ve done at any time, then it is no longer salvation by grace. Grace is God choosing whom He will be gracious to, and being gracious unto us without any regard to anything that we will ever do. “Even so then at this present time also there is a remnant according to the election of grace. And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work (Rom 11:5-6).” The glory of God’s grace is the freeness of His gift. God is FREE to withhold grace from one sinner and give grace to another for none are deserving. After Christ had been tried and imprisoned, Pilate (according to custom) was free to release either He or Barabbas. But in an act of ‘human kindness’ the murderer was set free and the Son of God suffered. Yet, this is an example of what God has done in reality and in real justice. We all deserve His damnation because we have all sinned. But God, from the richness of His Grace, chose to give His Son in the place of some. There were many prisoners and none deserved mercy, but Barabbas was chosen to go free (Matt 27:15-26). According to Pilate’s ‘grace’ Barabbas went free as a criminal and the Innocent died being wrongfully accused. Yet, according to God’s Grace, the Innocent became Guilty and the guilty went out as righteous. God IMPUTED the righteousness of His Son unto us and made us WORTHY of His love and salvation.
God’s Grace is free to sinners and totally irrespective of any human works at any time. Therefore, believers shouldn’t lose hope of seeing Christ save the most foolish and proudest of rebels. God justifies the ungodly (Rom 4:5). Therefore, turn your eyes away from the hopelessness you see in people’s flesh and behold the glorious God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ- the same God who gave His Son to the Cross and delighteth in Mercy.
God IMPUTES righteousness to spiritually dead sinners by faith. Faith isn’t something you do to finish the salvation that God has started. Faith is the gift God gives to justify you for fellowship with Him in this world (Eph 2:8-9). He IMPUTES to our account the perfection of Jesus Christ making Himself able to deal with us as justified persons rather than unworthy transgressors. By giving you faith, God justifies Himself to bestow blessings and promises unto you without compromising His Holy character. He deals with you as a son who is worthy of the inheritance of the Kingdom (Rom 5:1-2). In times past, you were shut out and denied knowledge of the Holy One, but now you are worthy to walk with God.
There is blessedness in the KNOWLEDGE OF IMPUTATION when Christ is truly received in your soul. This is the experience of salvation, and it is the result of the meeting the Living Christ as He ministers in His Word. Salvation is NOT believing in the doctrine of imputation or any other truth in the Gospel. You can logically believe every truth of Scripture and perish without hope. Salvation is trusting, loving, and laying your soul at the feet of Person who imputes righteousness without works. You do not trust a religious philosophy; you trust the Person who saved you from hell and gave you heaven by voluntarily exchanging places with you before God. Now, having received Him by God-given faith, you’re able to lay down your life to follow Christ in obedient submission. You can’t give what you don’t have, and you can’t love God until He’s revealed His Son IN you (Gal 1:15-16). I ask, has Christ come to you and taken away your heart of unbelief? Has He given you a new mind and a new will? Then your new mind understands HOW He first loved you, and your new heart’s one true desire is loving Him. And you have been made willing to lay down your life in fellowship with others who believe and serve the Lord in thankfulness (I John 4:19-5:5).
God warns you that rejecting this Gospel is despising His Son, grace, and righteousness. All who refuse to repent are worthy of hell and shall surely suffer for calling God a liar (I John 5:10). There is no excuse for you not to beseech God’s mercies in the Name of Christ when His grace flows so freely through Him. Why will you perish when all things are ready, and the Master bids thirsty souls to come unto Him and drink? God, in His great mercy, must convince you of your awful sinfulness until you NEED salvation in Christ. Then you’ll be willing to give everything to obtain Him. People who turn from this Gospel do so refusing to believe they need the Savior. Nobody who wants Christ shall be rejected. Yet, if you were thirsty, needing water, and I was proclaiming where a fountain was overflowing, then you’d search it out and drink. If you need Christ, continue to hear His Gospel, search Him out, and believe.