People often respond to me, “I just can’t conceive of how God can make me righteous.” I reply, “I’ve got a better question. How could God make Jesus become sin?”
Bob George, Classic Christianity
What a paradox! What irony! What an exchange!
Yes. Precisely, exchange.
21 This is the divine exchange: he who knew no 1sin embraced our distortion he appeared to be without form; this was the mystery of God’s prophetic 2poetry. He was disguised in our distorted image, marred with our iniquities; he took our sorrows, our pain, our shame to his grave and 3birthed his righteousness in us. He took our sins and we 3became his innocence. (The word, 1hamartia, comes from ha, without, and meros, form. The word, 2poema, often translated “made” like in, “he was made to be sin.” However, because of its context here I have translated poema to read prophetic poetry. As the scapegoat of the human race, he took on the distorted image of fallen man, he did not become a sinner, but the official representative of humanity’s sin. Then Paul uses the word 3ginomai, he birthed his righteousness in us; since we were born anew in his resurrection from the dead. Hos 6:2, Eph 2:5, 1 Pet 1:3.)
2 CoriNthians 5:21, MIRROR
This truth that my sin, and your sin, was given to Jesus and His innocence was given to us is the basis of our salvation! I still don’t fully “get it” and I may never “get it” until I’m with Jesus in person. The only thing I know is that I “got it” when Jesus “got mine” on the cross.
Jesus never knew sin. He knew about sin, but didn’t know it. The word “knew” used here is the same word for relations between a man and woman. Jesus was never intimate with sin. Jesus never allowed sin to get to His private life. He remained a stranger to sin.
“So that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” The word become that is used here means “to be made, finished.” We see that we have been made complete in the righteousness of God! We have reached our final form in His righteousness!
The great and glorious news of the gospel is clearly pronounced in this divine exchange. My sins for His righteousness!