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Jesus died, taking all our sin to offer all his righteousness

March 26, 2024

Daily Scripture

2 Corinthians 5:14-19, 21

14 The love of Christ controls us, because we have concluded this: one died for the sake of all; therefore, all died. 15 He died for the sake of all so that those who are alive should live not for themselves but for the one who died for them and was raised.
16 So then, from this point on we won’t recognize people by human standards. Even though we used to know Christ by human standards, that isn’t how we know him now. 17 So then, if anyone is in Christ, that person is part of the new creation. The old things have gone away, and look, new things have arrived!
18 All of these new things are from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and who gave us the ministry of reconciliation. 19 In other words, God was reconciling the world to himself through Christ, by not counting people’s sins against them. He has trusted us with this message of reconciliation.

21 God caused the one who didn’t know sin to be sin for our sake so that through him we could become the righteousness of God.

Daily Reflection & Prayer

The apostle Paul said people’s deepest spiritual issue is alienation from God. He was a vivid example of a “new creation.” As a young Pharisee (using his Hebrew name Saul—cf. Acts 13:9), he fiercely opposed early Christians. Yet he wrote today’s passage to Christians that he himself won to faith in Jesus in the city of Corinth. He said Jesus’ death gave us forgiveness, but not by convincing an unwilling God to love us. Instead, “God was reconciling the world to himself through Christ.”

  • Have you, like most of us, moved away from God at some point(s) in your life? When you create that distance, do you picture God as eager to bridge it, as indifferent to you and distant, or as angry with you and out to punish? How has God’s reconciling action through Jesus’ death made you, so to speak, “a new creature in Christ”? Who do you know who needs to hear that good news (quite possibly from you)?
  • You can read in Acts 9:1-20 about the encounter with Jesus that changed Saul’s life. He went from “spewing out murderous threats against the Lord’s disciples” to being the apostle who wrote, “The love of Christ controls us…. All of these new things are from God…. If anyone is in Christ, that person is part of the new creation.” In what ways is the effect of Christ’s death reshaping your identity and way of life as you live in God’s “new creation”?

Lord Jesus, God was reconciling the world (the world that includes me) to himself through you. Shape me into a transparent, winning beacon of the message that God loves us all. Amen.

GPS Insights

Lydia Kim

Lydia Kim

Lydia Kim serves as one of the pastors of Connection and Care at Resurrection Leawood. An avid believer that growing in faith pairs well with fellowship and food, she is always ready for recommendations on local restaurants and coffee shops.

There was a time in my life when I was so angry with God that in an effort to retaliate, I did everything in my power to do the exact opposite of what I knew to be kind, humble, and just. I wanted to create distance between me and God, and out of a place of deep pain, I thought this was the most logical thing to do. (It wasn’t.)  If I could just hurt God enough, maybe I wouldn’t feel this way. 

It was exhausting.

In pre-marital counseling, we talk about the importance of communication. I often sit with couples, stressing the importance of “I” statements, scheduled date times, and opportunities to grow and share feelings. Instead of talking to God about my feelings, I attempted to sever my relationship with God altogether. However, I failed to see that God never stopped wanting to be in relationship with me.

When I hit rock bottom, I realized that God was there waiting to reconcile with me. I feared God would be disappointed; I should have known better as a Christian, right? I expected punishment, but I received acceptance and a love so powerful that it changed my view of the world and myself.

This is the power of the cross. At first glance, it doesn’t make sense, but Christ’s love isn’t superficial. It’s a love that is willing to die for us. It is an everlasting love that transforms us, takes all the ugly, messed-up things we’ve done, and makes us new. As we walk through Holy Week, may we remember that this reconciling, grace-filled, boundless love is available whenever we are ready. 

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Scripture quotations are taken from The Common English Bible ©2011. Used by permission. All rights reserved.