God’s perfect holiness requires our perfect holiness, OR his perfect (eternal!) judgment on us for LACK of it.
But thanks be to God that his perfect LOVE provided a perfect substitute – Jesus! – so that he would pour out his perfect judgment & wrath on the only one who really WAS (& is & is to come) perfectly holy, so that he could pour out his grace & mercy on all of US who would find our lives hidden IN that perfect substitute – Jesus! – & WHY would God do this? Not just so we’d be LIKE him! But so that we could be WITH him! FOREVER!
This isn’t fundamentally a “perfecting” story – though we are, in Christ, perfected.
This isn’t ultimately a “we WIN!” story – though, in Christ, we do!
It’s not a “look at us, we’re so great!” story – though Christ is the lifter of our heads, and he will exalt us at the proper time! – or, as some of us tend to think, a “woe is me, if only I could be perfect without Jesus’ sacrifice!” story – though our hearts ought to break with what breaks the heart of God.
This is not a “religious” story, or even primarily a “rescue” story – though we are, in Christ, really rescued!
No! This is, first of all!, a LOVE story!
Our holiness is not the END – it’s the MEANS! That we might receive and ENJOY, NOT our own perfection!, but GOD HIMSELF!
If we do not have Jesus’ perfection – which he FREELY gives to all who would believe on his name! – If Jesus is not our ark of safety, and we do not stand before God clothed in HIS righteousness, we cannot survive the eternal INFERNO of God’s GLORY. But he does not give us Jesus’ righteousness so we will merely survive; he gives us the nature and heart of Jesus so we could be one with HIM!
HE is our heaven!