Regret. We have all felt its pain, but few of us understand its deadly effects.
Paul said to the Corinthian church that repentance leads to a salvation that is without regret. One way to read this could be that repentance leads to a life and destiny in God that is not diminished by the presence of regret. Regret is the opposite of reconciliation. It is a false repentance. Repentance puts our faith, trust and hope in the finished work of the cross, and it brings healing and restoration. Regret keeps wounds festering and raw, with our past always present with us.
When Jesus died on the cross, He reconciled us to the Father (2 Cor. 5:18). He did this by making "Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him" (2. Cor. 5:21). In making Jesus sin on the cross, Christ was not only dying for us but as us, and we died with Him. Sin was not something we did. Sin was something we were by nature. Paul in his letter to the Ephesians clarifies this for us, "And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you formerly walked according to the age of this world and according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit who now works in the sons of disobedience, among them we all also once lived in the lusts of our flesh, doing the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and we were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest" (Eph. 2:1-3, author emphasis added). When Jesus took upon Himself the sin of the world, He not only took upon Himself all that we've done, He took into Himself all that we were. Being fully man, He was able to embrace our frame absolutely. Being fully God, He was able to embrace all of creation absolutely. When He opened up His side on the cross, He brought us into Himself, and we died with Christ.
What you formerly were has died with Christ on a tree.
He went into the grave and came out three days later, resurrected and glorified. When He came out of the grave, we were reborn or "born from above" (John 3:5), and we now have the nature of the Second Adam, the man from heaven. You are not a little better than you used to be; you are a new creation, totally different.
Through this perfect work in three days in Jerusalem, He is both just and the justifier of all who would believe in Him. In six hours on the cross, Christ not only reconciled you and me to the Father but the entire cosmos.
To reconcile means to restore relationship, to bring into agreement or harmony and to make accounts compatible and consistent. Jesus put a credit in our account called "His life" and "His righteousness," and it is sufficient to balance out every withdrawal from our wholeness. Every deficit that sin, wounds, brokenness and loss left us with has been filled in Him, and in Him, every provision has been made for our wholeness. He has reconciled you and will fully reconcile heaven and earth when He returns.
He is not only reconciling your person, but he is reconciling your history, your ancestry and every component of your story with your new identity and using it for your destiny.
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