DECLARED NOT GUILTY
When an accused person goes through a vigorous court case and is declared “not guilty,” in the eyes of the law he is completely and totally NOT GUILTY. There may be all kinds of lingering doubts about whether in fact the judicial system got it right, but that is of absolutely no consequence to the established fact of the law that he is now not guilty.
The Bible says that we who have received God’s gift of salvation in Christ (John 3:16-17) are the righteousness of God in Christ. II Corinthians 5:21 says, “God made him (Jesus) who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”
It is exceedingly difficult for the human mind to comprehend and accept this fact because in our heart of hearts we know we are not righteous. We’re scoundrels. Sinners by nature and by choice. So how could this be? It’s true – we are scoundrels and far from being righteous, but because of Jesus’ atoning work on the cross on our behalf, God sees the full price of our sin as being completely paid – once and for all – and declares us “righteous” (not guilty) because of the shed blood of Jesus.
The song writer asks, “What can wash away my sin?” He then answers, “Nothing but the blood of Jesus.” Once again he asks, “What can make me whole again? Nothing but the blood of Jesus.” He then breaks into this anthem of praise… “O precious is that flow, that makes me white as snow. No other fount I know – nothing but the blood of Jesus.”
I struggled for years, like many, with doubts about my salvation fearing I wasn’t really saved. I had not grasped the idea of a God-given, Christ-imparted righteousness. I felt that I had to do something to prove my worth and be acceptable to God. Thank God for the convincing ministry of the Holy Spirit, who one day cut through all the lingering doubts and menacing insecurities that haunted me and convinced me of my righteous standing before God.
I can tell you that divine assurance is every bit as much a supernatural work of God as is the act of salvation. The Holy Spirit not only convicts us of sin, He convinces us of righteousness. Both are supernatural works of God. Jesus said, “And when he (Holy Spirit) comes, he will convict the world of sin, and of God’s righteousness, and of the coming judgment. …He will guide you into all truth.” (John 16:8, 13)
Righteousness is a state not a struggle. A state we can never attain on our own. We are “declared righteous” by God the moment we embrace Jesus as our personal Savior. Our enemy wants to trap us in a state of confusion and unrest. God, however, wants to bring us to a state of freedom in Christ where we know, that we know, that we know, our sins are forgiven and we – because of His mercy – are heaven bound children of God.
This is the testimony that God has given to us in His Word. “…God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life. I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.” (I John 3:11-13) “And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.” (Phil. 1:6 NLT)
Be blessed my friend.
The Barnabas Group (Loads of Love)
I John 3:1; 4:9-16; Hebrews 3:6; 4:14-16; 10:1-18; Ephesians 1:3-11; 2:10; Jude 24-25