“For God made Christ, who never sinned, to become sin itself (or the offering for our sin), so that we could be made right with God through Christ.” 2 Corinthians 5:21 NLT.
“For He hath made Him to be sin for us, Who knew no sin, that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.” 2 Corinthians 5:21 KJV
One cannot read this verse without seeing the startling finality of the transaction which God and Jesus Christ made with the helpless race of Adam. For Jesus Christ, the eternally sinless, completely righteous Son of God hung upon our cross for us, weighed down by the sin of the whole world. So completely did He bear this sin that the Presence of His Father left Him, and He cried out in the anguish of being forsaken by the God of all Holiness.
There can be no question that, in the Person of Jesus Christ, sin met with its full penalty on that cross, and the righteous judgment of God was fully satisfied.
But the story does not end there. God the Father raised Jesus from the dead to live forever in glory with Himself. Jesus Christ is the eternal righteousness of God, and He brought to an end the reign of sin over the souls of men. He now invites us, through faith, to actually become the righteousness of God in Him. He invites us to live in Himself, and He will live in us throughout all eternity. Having shared the depths of our helpless condition with us, He invites us to share in His righteousness– in a word, to become people just like Himself.