Jim's Blog: Observations and Perspectives

Justification by Faith

Imputed Righteousness

colinmercer-03Notes from a sermon by Colin Mercer, Sunday evening February 1st, 2015

I am thankful for a ministry that is faithful to the Word of God. Here are some notes, necessarily brief, that I jotted down as I listened to Pastor Colin Mercer preach from Romans 5:19. The whole sermon may be viewed below.

People are without strength; Christ saves such. People are under God’s wrath. It is only the mercy of God that keeps us out of hell. The psalmist is clear: God is angry with sinners every day. Well did Job ask a question such as this: “Is there any way for a man to be right with God?” Romans 5:19 is clear that we can be justified, but not by any merit of our own. Our righteousness is as filthy rags. Therefore, we need the righteousness of Another–the Lord Jesus Christ.

1. Jesus Christ Has a Perfect Righteousness

This is a personal righteousness on account of His obedience–all He has done, and all He has suffered. Hebrews 7:26, He is holy, harmless and undefiled, separate from sinners. His obedience is both active and passive. His righteousness has been acknowledged and accepted by the Father. God is pleased with what Christ has done. It is a satisfying righteousness.

It is His forever–an everlasting righteousness, one that abides with Him. Hence, Jeremiah could speak of the LORD our RIGHTEOUSNESS, Jehovah Tsidkenu.

 2. The Perfect Righteousness of Christ Is Imputed to Sinners

God places our sins to His account; He punishes these sins in Him. See the Westminster Shorter Catechism on Justification*. It is counted as if that righteousness belongs to us. It is an act of God’s free grace. It would be fair for God to condemn us–but God…! It involves all of Christ’s righteousness–all of His merit, not just some of it–to our account if we are a believer. It is at once–it is an act, not a work (not “some now, some later”); not gradually. Horatius Bonar wrote of this. And it is received by faith alone (Romans 5:1). It cannot be taken from a believer. We are robed in His righteousness (Isaiah).

3. The Perfect Righteousness of Christ Secures Eternal Blessings for the Believer

All his sins are completely and forever pardoned. A quote from Richard Sibbes. God looks on us and sees the righteousness of Christ. We have the riches of His grace. We can rejoice in every trial, without fear, notwithstanding the Devil’s accusations or insinuations. I can face life and death without fear. Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of His saints. We can come to the judgment seat in the all-sufficiency of Jesus.

* Q: What is justification?
A: Justification is an act of God’s free grace, wherein he pardoneth all our sins, and accepteth us as righteous in his sight, only for the righteousness of Christ imputed to us, and received by faith alone.

The video below is made available courtesy of www.sermonaudio.com


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