From David Niednagel, Pastor/Teacher (David uses the S.O.A.P. method in his daily time of study and meditation – study, observe, apply, pray)
2 Corinthians 5:16-21 The Greatest Exchange Ever
2 Cor. 5:16 So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! 18 All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: 19 that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. 20 We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. 21God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. NIV
Paul did not look at people with a normal worldly perspective of wealth, accomplishment, looks, status, etc. He knew everyone was passing away and would face judgment. His task was to appeal to them on behalf of Christ showing mercy to sinful people. Paul knew his own past and could tell everyone of Christ’s forgiveness and His gift of new life. God desired to reconcile broken, angry, guilty people to Himself, and He had brought about a wonderful, perfect plan to make it happen.
We were sinners but Jesus was not. So God had Jesus trade places with us. He took all our sin, and put it on Jesus who became guilty with our guilt. Then He took Jesus’ perfect righteousness, which was way beyond anything we could ever achieve, and put that on us, making us perfect with His perfection! Amazing!!! Who would ever have dreamed up something like that?! Only a God who is gracious beyond anything we could ever imagine. Humans want to believe in a God who will overlook and/or forgive sin, but they would never think of God Himself being punished for our sin, and then giving us perfection we could not achieve.
Lord Jesus, You are amazing! Thank You for paying the price we could not pay, and then giving us all of Your riches. Thank You for Your love and sacrifice. It is the least we could do to be ambassadors telling others not only what You have done for us, but what You are offering to them. What a wonderful message we have! Help me speak it with genuine gratitude and passion, wanting other to know You too. Amen