Saturday, August 8, 2009

Righteousness

In order to enter the Kingdom of God, God requires perfect righteousness. Will you be able to enter? It all depends on the type of righteousness you have.
There are two types of righteousness, self righteousness and righteousness that is from faith in Jesus Christ. Understanding righteousness is critical to each believer. God requires us to be righteous, but where does righteousness come from? Does it come from a daily commitment of reading your Bible, daily prayer, being kind to others, giving to the poor, controlling your temper? No, it comes from faith in Jesus Christ. Many believers spend the days of their life trying to be "good". They think if they made it through the day being "good" then they can come to God with confidence in their prayers and if they’ve been "bad" they might actually avoid prayer because of how guilty they may feel. So many times we sin and feel that God is angry with us, that He is simply tired of watching us fail time after time? This kind of thinking is from a believer that is self-righteous. Even though we are all sinners and all fall short of the glory of God, God sees us as righteous because Jesus became our righteousness! If righteousness was up to us then no one would be able to enter the Kingdom of God. Righteousness is nothing about us and all about Christ! Jesus was the only One qualified to become our righteousness. He was perfect, spotless, blameless, sinless; therefore He was the only One that could pay the penalty of sin. He paid the price by dying on the cross so I wouldn’t have to. He died so I could live.
Self-righteous people usually have critical, judgmental spirits. They are usually spending their life trying to be "good", which is impossible apart from Christ. This is legalistic living that keeps us in bondage under the law. A christian doesn’t become more righteous by doing good works nor does accepting Jesus give us a license to sin. When we accept Jesus as our righteousness we will want to do good not because we are trying to earn righteousness before an Almighty God, but because of our outpouring of love for Him for what He has done for us!! Our works will come from an outpouring of love for God, not so we can earn His favor. Only when we accept God’s perfect gift of Jesus and His sacrifice can we begin to experience true life. Self-righteous people are usually trying to improve themselves, trying to change, but only God can change us. We can’t produce spiritual fruit on our own. It is impossible to live a fruitful life in the flesh apart from Christ. When we receive Jesus, our Righteousness we begin to live according to the Spirit and not by the sinful nature. God accepts us not because of anything we have done, but only because of Jesus. We can stop living life in bondage by accepting Jesus, our Righteousness and start living by the Spirit and not by the flesh.

2 Corinthians 5:21,
Romans 3:22
Philippians 3:9
Romans 4:4-5
Romans 4:13-15
Romans 8:3-4
Romans 8:10
Romans 10: 1-4
Titus 3: 4-5
Lev. 19:2

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