THE SINLESS ONE MADE SIN
2 Corinthians 5:21
A.this verse brings before us the most remarkable transaction that has ever taken place in the universe, when the holy, spotless Son of GOD took the sinner's place
B.Jesus Christ offered up Himself as compensation for our sins
II.the meaning of the words, "who knew no sin"
A.He never made the acquaintance of sin by actual disobedience to the law of God
1.He never swerved from the path of righteousness in the smallest point
2.in all His life down here, He never one time sinned - 1 Peter 2:22
3.He could turn to His bitterest enemies, and ask without the slightest hesitation, or fear that they would attempt an answer, "Which of you convinceth me of sin?"
4.no one who has ever investigated His records has been able to point to one flaw in His behavior
B.this reveals that He never committed sin, and in this He stands apart from all other men
1.of every other person it is written, "All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God"
2.for this reason all other people are in need of repentance - Acts 17:30
3.all men have dishonored God and are guilty in His sight, but Jesus never repented of anything
a)He never retracted a word He said, never confessed the slightest failure, never apologized for anything
b)He was never sorry for any act or word; He never lifted His heart to God in confession of sin
4.In Jesus we see holiness without one dash of repentance
a)He never shed a tear because of His blunders or mistakes; He never on any occasion took back one thing He ever said
b)His most devoted followers failed:
(1)Peter denied Him; Thomas doubted Him; James and John wanted to call down fire from Heaven
(2)Paul spoke harsh words against the high priest, and immediately afterward apologized for it
(3)Barnabas lost his temper; Mark proved untrustworthy on more than one occasion
c)our blessed Lord moved on in perfect peacefulness through every experience of life
5.He was the sinless One, and yet He was truly man, but He was more than man; He was GOD incarnate, and therefore absolutely without sin
C.in His humanity, He was never contaminated by an inward tendency to sin
1.from the moment of His incarnation, He was the holy One - Luke 1:35
2.the Bible say that He was tempted in all points like as we are, yet without sin - Hebrews 4:15
a)some have taken this last to mean, "Yet without sinning"
b)that was true as we have seen, but it is not all of the truth
c)the verse means that He was tempted in all points like as we are, apart from sin; He was never tempted by inbred sin
d)Jesus could say, "The prince of this world cometh, and hath nothing in me" - John 14:30
e)we cannot say that; when the enemy comes at us, there is a traitor inside who would gladly surrender the fort, if he could; but with Jesus it was quite the opposite
3.some ask how Jesus could be tempted in all points like as we are, if He did not possess a sinful nature
a)our first parents were sinless, when temptation first came to them
b)they were tested on three points, the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life
(1)these are the only ways in which man can be tested
(2)temptations may come in the form of fleshly suggestion, the lust of the flesh
(3)temptations may comes along artistic and sensuous lines, the lust of the eyes
(4)temptations may appeal to the mind, the pride of life
c)when Eve looked upon the tree, she saw that its was good for food - the lust of the flesh; that it was pleasant to the eyes - the lust of the eyes; that it was desired to make one wise - the pride of life
d)she yielded on every point, and Adam shared in her sin, and thus the race became fallen
e)after Jesus had been in the wilderness fasting for forty days, Satan tempted Him - Matthew 4:2-11
(1)Satan said, "Command that these stones be made bread," this was an appeal to the lust of the flesh
(2)Satan showed Jesus all the kingdoms of earth and the glory of them - the lust of the eyes
(3)Satan suggested that Jesus should leap from the pinnacle of the temple so that the angels could bear Him up, and thus be recognized by the people - the pride of life
(4)each temptation failed, He was without sin
4.sin in our eyes is alluring, Satan presents it as something attractive and delightful
a)our corrupt nature responds to temptation, but Jesus never did
b)Jesus was absolutely free from all inward tendency to sin: "He knew no sin"
c)it is unthinkable that He could ever sin, for He was God manifest in the flesh
d)He did not change His glorious personality when He became man
5.how could His temptation be real, if there was no possibility that He would fall
a)the temptation was not permitted to find out if He would fall, but to prove that He would not
b)by this it was demonstrated that He was an acceptable sin offering
(1)in the OT we read concerning the sin offering, "It is most holy"
(2)on the day of His crucifixion, distinct testimony was given concerning this fact
(a)the wife of Pilate told her husband, "Have thou nothing to do with that just man"
(b)Pilate washed his hands, and said, "I find in him no fault at all"
(c)one thief hanging beside Him on the cross declared, "This man hath done nothing amiss"
(d)when He yielded up His spirit to the Father, the Roman centurion exclaimed, "Certainly this was a righteous man"
III.the meaning of the words, "made him to be sin for us"
A.He whom the law had no claim on whatsoever, poured out His soul unto death in the sinner's place
B.it was not just the physical suffering which Jesus endured upon the cross, that made atonement for sin
1.it was what He suffered in His holy, spotless soul, in His sinless being, when the judgment that our sins deserved fell on Him
2.for six awful hours He hung suspended upon that cross; God seems to have divided the time into two halves
a)from the third to the sixth hour, the sun was shining down upon that cross
b)from the sixth to the ninth hour, a supernatural darkness covered the entire scene
3.in the first three hours He was suffering and agonizing, but He gave no evidence of any self-pity
a)not one word was uttered by those holy lips that indicated that He was suffering
b)He looked down from the cross and saw His mother and John standing near; He said to her, "Behold thy son," and to John, "Behold thy mother"
c)He looked at those who crucified Him and said, "Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do"
d)when the dying thief said, "Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom," Jesus said, "I will do better than that; you do not need to wait “To day shalt thou be with me in paradise"
e)all His words had to do with the blessing and happiness of others
f)during those first three hours, while the sun was shining, He was suffering from the hand of man
g)what Jesus endured at the hand of man would never put away one sin
4.at high noon, the sun was blotted out, and darkness spread over the scene
a)He who is both God and man was dying; God was then entering into judgment with Him for our sins
b)in those three hours of darkness, the judgment which our sins deserved was visited upon Him
c)then His soul was made an offering for sin; then "He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon him"
d)then it was that He was made to be sin for us
(1)the pent-up wrath of the centuries fell upon Him
(2)He endured, what you and I would have had to endure through all eternity, had it not been for His mighty sacrifice
(3)then His soul was made an offering for sin
e)just before He gave up the ghost, we hear His cry of anguish predicted in Psalm 22, "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me"
(1)the answer to that question is so that you and I could have eternal life
(2)He, the holy One, the sinless One, took our place in judgment so that we might be forever delivered from condemnation
(3)He went into darkness so that light might ever shine upon us
(4)He bore our load of guilt so that our sins could be removed as far as the east is from the west
IV.Jesus is now our righteousness [That we might be made the righteousness of God in him]
A.we who believe are now righteous, through grace
1.God has shown how He can be just in justifying all who trust in Him, who took our place in judgment
2.upon the cross our sins were imputed to Him
a)He endured what we deserved; He drank the bitter cup of wrath which should have been ours
b)He emptied that cup; He exhausted the wrath of God against our sins
3.now divine righteousness demands that all who trust in Him be freed from every charge
a)through faith we are fully justified before the throne of God
b)salvation is based upon the blessed fact that "He hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him"
B.any attempt on our part to provide a righteousness which will satisfy God, is doomed to end in failure
1.thousands today who bear the Christian name have never faced their sins before God, and found their righteousness in Christ
2.nothing is sadder than a profession without possession; nothing more awful than having a name that thou livest, and art dead in trespasses and in sins
3.this is true of all who have never taken their place as lost, guilty sinners before God; and looked in faith to the Lord Jesus Christ, and received Him as their own personal Saviour
C.if you have never faced your true condition, I plead with you to do it now, without any further delay
D.look by faith to the One who was made to be sin for you, that you might become the righteousness of GOD in Him
E.He was lifted up on Calvary's cross "that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life"