Penance – self-punishment or sacrifice performed to show sorrow or repentance for their sins.
Righteousness – in right standing with or being approved of.
Job 9:2 : Indeed, I know that this is true. But how can a mortal be righteous before God?
The truth of the matter is people long to be in right standing with God.
People are aware of the consequences of their actions.
Romans 6:23a : For the wages of sin is death.
2 Corinthians 5:21: God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
(He made us right with God)
Isaiah 64:7: No one calls on your name or strives to lay hold of you; for you have hidden your face from us and made us waste away because of our sins.
Jesus took our sins.
1 John 3:5: But you know that he appeared so that he might take away our sins. And in him is no sin.
Principle of Imputation: Our sins were imputed to Jesus Christ (“credited” to Jesus).
Christ’s righteousness was imputed to us.
1 John 4:10: This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
Atonement – to cover
Jesus covered us with His righteousness.
Isaiah 53: 4,5,6:
4 Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted.
5 But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed.
6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.
The greatest “exchange” in the history of mankind: When Jesus took our sins and covered us with His righteousness.
John 19:30 : When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
(What God took from you, it is something permanent)
Psalm 51:16a: You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it;
Psalm 51:17 a,b: The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart.
Matthew 9:13a: Then he added, “Now go and learn the meaning of this Scripture: ‘I want you to show mercy, not offer sacrifices.’
Friend, you don’t have to work out or earn your salvation. God desires mercy not sacrifice. When Jesus said, “It is finished”, there’s nothing more we can do beyond what God did to earn our own salvation.
You don’t need to do penance this Holy Week.
How then can you be saved?
Confess your sins to God, believe that God sent His Son Jesus to die and pay for your sins and that He rose again from the dead to defeat and break the power of sin in our lives. The Bible says, “Repent and sin no more”.
Salvation is found in our Lord Jesus Christ. Accept Him as your Lord and Savior and surrender your life to Him and let Him take control of your life and lead you to become the person He wants you to be.
We should allow God’s grace to work in us for us to live a holy life just as our God is holy. We should constantly renew our mind and set our minds on things above and not on worldly things.
Jesus said, “It is finished”.
What this means is that Christians should start living from victory, and not for victory.