Christ is Our Righteousness and He Delights in Saving Sinners
UPDATE Sept 2021: I have come to believe that Jeff Crippen does not practise what he preaches. He vilely persecuted an abuse victim and spiritually abused many other people in the Tillamook congregation. Go here to read the evidence. Jeff has not gone to the people that he spiritually and emotionally abused. He has not apologised to them, let alone asked for their forgiveness.
1 Tim 1:15 The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost.
Christ is our righteousness. I am justified fully and completely before God by faith alone in Christ alone. I am righteous because Christ’s righteousness has been credited to me, and my sins credited to Him and fully paid for at the cross. Justice has been served, and God remains just. This is the good news of the gospel. If anyone is still thinking that it is by their performance that they will be accepted by God, then they are still approaching God by the Law, and the only result of the Law is condemnation, death, and hell. Christ justifies the UN-godly. Christ came into this world to save SINNERS. God’s love is such that it is not a matter of US loving Him first, but of HIM loving us while we were still sinners. If you would be just before God and be forgiven your sins, then you must cease all efforts from trying to make yourself “holy” enough so that God is somehow put into your debt and owes you that forgiveness. It won’t work.
And then we might mention a word here to anyone who might think that they are so miserable of a sinner that God would never forgive and accept them. Hear Christ’s own words, then read those of the Apostle Paul (above) once again:
Mar 2:15-17 And as he reclined at table in his house, many tax collectors and sinners were reclining with Jesus and his disciples, for there were many who followed him. And the scribes of the Pharisees, when they saw that he was eating with sinners and tax collectors, said to his disciples, “Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners?” And when Jesus heard it, he said to them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.”
The hymn-writer Joseph Hart had it exactly right:
Come, ye sinners, poor and needy,
Weak and wounded, sick and sore;
Jesus ready stands to save you,
Full of pity, love and pow’r.
Come, ye thirsty, come, and welcome,
God’s free bounty glorify;
True belief and true repentance,
Every grace that brings you nigh.
Come, ye weary, heavy-laden,
Lost and ruined by the fall;
If you tarry till you’re better,
You will never come at all.
Let not conscience make you linger,
Not of fitness fondly dream;
All the fitness He requires
Is to feel your need of Him.