Imputation of Righteousness to the Believing One!


1.   What is the doctrine of imputation?

A.     A biblical illustration is found in Philemon 17,18.  

Paul is writing to Philemon  whose slave Onesimus had run away. Onesimus comes in contact with Paul and responds to God’s Word.   

Paul sends him back to Philemon and pens this short note to tell Philemon that if Onesimus has incurred any debts it should be put on Paul’ s account. 

This is imputation:  “to set something to one's account."


B.  An illustration can be found in the words spoken to the bride by the groom at many weddings — “with all my worldly goods I thee endow.” 

This is imputation:  placing to the bride’s account all the groom’s worldly goods.


C.      The Greek word for imputation occurs about 41 times in the New Testament — 35 in Paul’s writings.    [logizomai  logidzomai]

Paul uses the word 19 times in Romans and 10 times in Romans 4, the imputation chapter.   

Find it is translated “credited,”  "reckoned,"  "take into account,"  or “imputed”.


2.  There are 3 great imputations

#1.  Imputation 1:  God imputes to us what is actually ours.


Adam's original sin is imputed to every member of the human race.

The key passage:  Romans 5:12; also 18-19  [therefore we all are a part of the fall]

a.   Principle of imputation is found in the words  "death spread"   kjv "death passed upon.”

b.   This speaks of spiritual genetics (a gene is an entity concerned with the transmission of heredity).  Death is part of our spiritual heredity from Adam.

c.    The reason for this heredity is when Adam sinned “ALL SINNED.”  

In Adam all die!     1 Cor 15:22

Adam’s sin was not the sin of one man but the entire race.  My hand took the fruit in the garden.


#2. All of man's sin was imputed to Christ while He was on the cross.  2 Cor 5:21;   whole world  1 Jn 2:2


#3. God's righteousness is imputed to the ungodly who believes in Christ. Rom 4:5;  3:22;     2 Cor 5:21 


Note: The first 2 are a reality for all;  the third becomes true when one believes in Christ.   2 Cor. 5:17


3.  Importance of imputation of God's righteousness:   The imputation of righteousness is the basis for our being declared righteous by God.


4. Definition:  Imputation of righteousness [God's] is the act of God crediting perfect righteousness to the one who believes in Jesus Christ.


5.  It is based totally on the work of Christ on the cross.   Specifically:

a.  Redemption:  paying the price necessary to buy us from the slave market of sin; freeing us  from the bondage of sin.   Rom 3:24  [speaks to the price required by  God’s  +R/J]


b. Atonement made is Unlimited: the payment for all sin  of all mankind; it was for all mankind;   for all time that he bore the penalty/guilt for all. [1 Jn 2:2; Isa. 53:6]


c. Propitiation:  satisfied all of the requirements of God's Holiness.

[This leaves what?  The only barrier left is man's willingness to accept God's gracious provision.    Only condition is to believe!]


6.  This divine righteousness is imputed to the believer at the point of faith in Christ.        Rom 3:22;      Phil. 3:9


7.  This imputation of righteousness is related to our new position in Christ. 2 Cor. 5:21 "...that we  might become the righteousness of God in Him."


8.  The imputation of righteousness is the basis for God's justice being able to declare the one who believes in Christ to be justified, or declared righteous recognizing our new standing before God.

-  this new standing is based totally on the work of Christ not on anything that we have  accomplished in any way!

     - Its a gift [dwrean   freely, without a cause] 

     - Its by means of faith  Rom 3:28;  5:1