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Imputed Righteousness

Discussion in 'Salvation (Soteriology)' started by Ezra, Mar 10, 2003.

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  1. Ezra

    Ezra New Member

    After these things the Word of the LORD came unto Abram in a vision saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward…And He [the LORD] brought him forth abroad, and said, Look now towards heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and He said him, So shall thy seed be. And he believed in the LORD; and He counted [Heb. chashab] it to him for righteousness (Gen.15:1,5-6 see Heb.11:8-12 for full significance).

    One of the greatest truths in the Word of God is that of imputed righteousness. The entire 4th chapter of the book of Romans, the entire 3rd chapter of the book of Galatians, the entire 11th chapter of the book of Hebrews, are devoted to this doctrine: “He believed in the LORD and He [God] counted/reckoned/imputed/passed to his account it [faith] to him [the believer] for righteousness”. When we believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, all of God's righteousness is placed freely into our "spiritual bank account".

    Hebrew chashab {khaw-shab'}
    1) to think, plan, esteem, calculate, invent, make a judgment, imagine, count
    4) to esteem, value, regard
    b) (Niphal)
    1) to be accounted, be thought, be esteemed
    2) to be computed, be reckoned
    3) to be imputed
    Greek logizomai {log-id'-zom-ahee} “This word deals with reality. If I "logizomai" or reckon that my bank book has $25 in it, it has $25 in it. Otherwise I am deceiving myself. This word refers to facts not suppositions.”
    1) to reckon, count, compute, calculate, count over
    a) to take into account, to make an account of
    1) metaph. to pass to one's account, to impute
    2) a) thing is reckoned as or to be something, i.e. as availing for or equivalent to something, as having the like force and weight
    c) to reckon or account
    2) to reckon inward, count up or weigh the reasons, to deliberate
    b) to suppose, deem, judge

    Since all have sinned and come short of the glory [holiness, righteousness, perfection] of God (Romans 3:23), it stands to reason that it is God's own righteousness, which is also Christ's own righteousness, since He is God indeed:
    Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgement and justice in the earth. In His days Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely: and this is His Name whereby He shall be called THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS (Jeremiah 23:5-6 see also Jer.33:15; Zech.3:8; 6:2). Thy throne, O GOD, is for ever and ever: the sceptre of thy kingdom is a right sceptre. Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated wickedness; therefore, GOD, thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows (Psalm 45:6-7). But unto the Son He [God] saith, Thy throne, O GOD, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom. Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore GOD, even thy God hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows (Heb.1:8-9. )In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God… And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the Only Begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth… For the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ(John 1:1,14,17) I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, THE ALMIGHTY… I am the first and the last: I am He that liveth and was dead; and behold I am alive for ever more, Amen. And have the keys of hell and death (Revelation 1:8,17-18) And one [seraph] cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of His glory …And they [the seraphim] rest not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come (Isaiah 6:3; Revelation 4:8).

    All these Scriptures refer to the same Lord God Almighty (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) the one true and living God, THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS (Hebrew YHWH Tsidkenu).

    1. We have none of our own. Isa 64:6 But we are ALL as an unclean [thing], and all our righteousnesses [are] as FILTHY RAGS; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away. Rom 3:23 For ALL have sinned and come short of the glory of God.
    2. God’s holiness demands it. Hbr 12:14 Follow peace with all [men], and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:
    3. God’s grace provides for it. *** 3:4-7 But after that the KINDNESS and LOVE of God our Saviour toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His MERCY he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost, which He shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; that being justified by His GRACE, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.
    4. God’s gift of eternal life requires it. Jn 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave His Only Begotten Son, that whosoever BELIEVETH IN HIM should not perish, but have everlasting life.

    By faith and by faith alone. Jn 3:14-15 And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up: That WHOSOEVER BELIEVETH in Him should not perish, but have eternal life. Eph 2:8-9 For by grace are ye saved THROUGH FAITH; and that not of yourselves; IT IS THE GIFT OF GOD: not of works, lest any man should boast.

    Yes, indeed. “For in Him [Christ] dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead [Father, Son and Holy Spirit] bodily. AND YE ARE COMPLETE IN HIM, which is the head of all principality and power: In whom also ye ARE CIRCUMCISED WITH THE CIRCUMCISION MADE WITHOUT HANDS, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ” (Col. 2:9-12).

    Knowing, BY FAITH, that we are presently as righteous as God, allows us to enter into the true sabbath rest -- God's Sabbath Rest (Hebrews 4:1-16].
    We teamed up with Faith Counseling. Can they help you today?
  2. nChrist

    nChrist AKA: Tom - Saved By Grace Through Faith Supporter

    United States
    Thanks Ezra!. I really enjoyed your post. I copied it for further study. You packed tremendous truth in one message.
  3. Andrew

    Andrew Well-Known Member

    2 things happened at the cross.

    1. Our sins were imputed into Christ, and Christ was punished for those sins.

    2. Christ's righteousness itself was imputed to us when we believed!

    Most Christians understnd 1. but not 2. Hence their inability to receive from God becos they can't believe they are that righteous, and feel they have to do something to get there first.

    In the OT,

    1. is the sin offering, where the sins of the sinner is transfered into the innocent lamb as he lays hand on the lamb.

    2. is the burnt offering, where the innocence of the Lamb is transfered into the sinner as he lays hands on the lamb.
  4. Allen2

    Allen2 Member

    I don't see any explicit biblical support for #2--the passages in Romans and Galatians speak of the rts of God, say our FAITH is reckoned as rts, but NOT that Christ's rts is imputed to us. I know I believed that for yrs, but I don't believe its clearly stated or implied in Scripture. Al
  5. Andrew

    Andrew Well-Known Member

    We have the righteousness of God himself the moment we put our faith in Jesus!

    Ro 3:22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:

    Ro 4:6 Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God IMPUTETH righteousness without works,

    Ro 4:11 And he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness of the faith which he had yet being uncircumcised: that he might be the father of all them that believe, though they be not circumcised; that righteousness might be IMPUTED unto them also:

    Ro 4:22 And therefore it was IMPUTED to him for righteousness.

    Ro 5:17 For if by one manÕs offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.)

    Ro 9:30 What shall we say then? That the Gentiles, which followed not after righteousness, have attained to righteousness, even the righteousness which is of faith.

    1Co 1:30 But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:
  6. Allen2

    Allen2 Member

    Hey, I agree with every thing you said (well, all the verses you quoted); however, the Doctrine of Double Imputation teaches that my sins were imputed to Christ and Christ's rts was imputed to me.

    None of the passages on justification teach or imply that CHRIST'S rts is imputed to me: rather, my FAITH is reckoned as rts and the rts of God (the Father) is imputed to me. Are I being clear...I are not the world's bist turpist and somethings my thots are cornfused :) God bless, Al
  7. Ragman

    Ragman Member


    Although I think our understanding of "imputed righteousness" leans too heavily on a legal understanding of righteousness rather than God's own rightness of relationship within the Trinity; but for what it is worth on your comment above.....

    2Cor. 5:21 "God took Him who knew no sin to become sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus"

    Whatever one takes righteousness to mean, it cannot mean that God "pretends" we are righteous when we are not because of our faith.  But that because of the incarnation, God Himself stands in our place; unites Himself with us in becoming man; Christ grants us share in His relationship with His Father. (the rightness of their relationship) We have been included in the Son's relationship with His Father in the Spirit. 

    The Father has never needed us to be legally righteous, for He sent the Son into the world not counting men's sins against them.  Therefore the righteousness that has been "imputed" is not legal in nature, but relational.  When we were "enemies in our mind" against God, God entered into our alienation and from within that state loved His Father with all of His heart, soul, mind and strength.  The Son therefore brings us into right relationship with the Father in Himself.  This is the righteouness that has been given to us. 

    Now from within the embrace of the Father that we have been brought into in Christ, we are free to live "rightly" with God, with ourselves and with one another.

    Yes, God's own righteousness has been imputed to us, but we need not attempt to understand this from the juridical, legal framework but from the organic, relational nature of the Trinity itself.
  8. Andrew

    Andrew Well-Known Member

    Ro 4:11 And he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness of the faith which he had yet being uncircumcised: that he might be the father of all them that believe, though they be not circumcised; that righteousness might be IMPUTED unto them also:

    Ro 4:22 And therefore it was IMPUTED to him for righteousness.

    ¥ In the Sin Offering, when an innocent lamb is brought to the priest, the sinner lays his hands on the spotless lamb and transfers his sins into the lamb. The lamb is then killed instead of the sinner. and the sinner goes scott-free. -- ours sins nailed Jesus to the cross. He was carrying our sins in his own body.

    ¥ In the burnt offering, it is the other way round, the perfection of the lamb is transferred to the sinner when he lays his hand on the lamb.

    So salvation is a 2-way thing: Our sins are put on His body while His righteousness is imputed to us. Most Christians understnd the first part (sin) but can't take the 2nd part (righteousness) becos they can't believe God is that good to put his own righteousness in us! :)
  9. Allen2

    Allen2 Member

    Rom.4:22 does not say that Christ's rts(the rts life He lived acc. to many Calvinists) is imputed to us. This is a citation from from Gen.15:6, where Abraham believes God's promise that he would have a son and thru him uncountable descendants. Because Abraham believed this promise, He was accepted in rt standing with God.
    Hey Ragman: your take on Justification was refreshing and full of possiblities--So say some more, ya hear! Al
  10. Andrew

    Andrew Well-Known Member

    so there are 2 types of righteousness where one is imputed and one is not? clearly not.

    If Christ's righteousness was not imputed to you? then what was? or how are you righteous? On what basis do you come b4 God?
  11. Allen2

    Allen2 Member

    Hi Andrew: According to Rom.4:5, our FAITH is credited as rts; Rom.3:22, the rts we receive by faith comes from God(our Father). In sum, because of Christ's death and res., when we believe on God's Son, God receives us as being in rt standing with Him. There is no double imputation as far as I can see. God bless, Al
  12. Allen2

    Allen2 Member

    Maybe I could summarize it this way:
    A. Adam's sin is NOT imputed to us: He was not chosen as our representative in any sense.
    B. Our sins were all imputed to Christ, since He died for the entire race.
    C. When I believe in Christ, like Abraham, God reckons me as rts, placing me thru Christ's work in rt standing with the Father.
    D. I still cannot see where the Bible teaches that CHRIST'S rts is imputed to me. The Scriptures DO teach that God's rts is imputed (reckoned) to the believer. Whew! I wonder if I have this marvelous doctrine all figured out? If I ever think I have everything put together, give me a good swift kick in my lower quadrant. Al
  13. Blackhawk

    Blackhawk Monkey Boy

    Eastern Orthodox
    hmm so what does this passage mean?

    Rom 5:6-21
    6 For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly.
    7 For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die.
    8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
    9 Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath {of God} through Him.
    10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.
    11 And not only this, but we also exult in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.
    12 Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned--
    13 for until the Law sin was in the world, but sin is not imputed when there is no law.
    14 Nevertheless death reigned from Adam until Moses, even over those who had not sinned in the likeness of the offense of Adam, who is a type of Him who was to come.
    15 But the free gift is not like the transgression. For if by the transgression of the one the many died, much more did the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one Man, Jesus Christ, abound to the many.
    16 The gift is not like {that which came} through the one who sinned; for on the one hand the judgment {arose} from one {transgression} resulting in condemnation, but on the other hand the free gift {arose} from many transgressions resulting in justification.
    17 For if by the transgression of the one, death reigned through the one, much more those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.
    18 So then as through one transgression there resulted condemnation to all men, even so through one act of righteousness there resulted justification of life to all men.
    19 For as through the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners, even so through the obedience of the One the many will be made righteous.
    20 The Law came in so that the transgression would increase; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more,
    21 so that, as sin reigned in death, even so grace would reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
  14. Allen2

    Allen2 Member

    Hey Blackhawk: what particular issue were you addressing with your lengthy passage of Scripture? Adam's relationship to us? The imputation of Christ's rts? God bless, Al
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