“The Great Exchange”: We get to exchange our failures for His perfect obedience, our sin for His righteousness.
Nehemiah 10 & 11
Nehemiah 10 & 11:
“The Great Exchange”
As I read chapter 10 and all that the people covenanted to do, I was wondering how often we stop to think about and praise God for the fact that we are now under grace! It’s not that it was wrong for them to make a covenant. It was what they were expected to do under the law.
Paul said the law was “… our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith” (Gal. 3.24). The law, which was impossible to keep completely, pointed to the fact that we can’t be saved by our own righteousness and law keeping and helped us see our need for a Savior.
Jesus Christ who was tempted in all ways as we are, yet without sin (Heb. 4.15), was the only one who kept the law perfectly. When we accept Him as our Savior we take part in a “Great Exchange.” We exchange our sinful failure to keep the law for His perfect righteousness (Heb. 4.15).
2 Corinthians 5.21:
21 For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.
More of the “Great Exchange”
Verse 24a, “But My faithfulness and My mercy shall be with him, …”
20 I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. 21 I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died in vain.
If we have accepted Christ as our Savior and He lives in us, then God’s faithfulness and mercy are with us, too!
He is the maker of us all
Verse 2, “The rich and the poor have this in common, the LORD is the maker of them all.”
Not only is He the Maker of us all, but we are all equals at the foot of the cross. “In Christ” there is neither rich nor poor, male nor female (no matter what the feminists say!), Jew nor Gentile, mature Christian nor “baby” Christian.
While we may have different roles in the body of Christ and while our maturity and obedience may affect our walk with Him, we are all equal in His love and heirs of the grace of life.
28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.
His sovereign hand
We continue to see God’s sovereign hand of grace on Paul and this God-ordained journey. Instead of being put in the regular prison, he is allowed to live in his own house for a period of time to enable him to preach and share the gospel message openly. He does so first with the Jews as was his custom. Though there were some who accepted the truth, the nation as a whole, continued to reject it.
Remember who you are “in Christ” today,
|The Great Exchange
By Jerry Bridges & Robert C. Bevington / Good News PublishersWe’ve heard the word “atonement,” but do we really understand its significance? Bridges and Bevington explore the Old Testament sacrifices and prophecies that foreshadowed Christ, revealing how they tied in with Jesus’ saving work. Learn why even though we deserve condemnation from God, he has given us the opportunity for forgiveness and eternal life! 320 pages, softcover from Crossway Books.
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