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  • Henry Omotayo

Who Is The Righteous?

Matthew 6:33, Psalm 112:6

Message No. 0708 | Twitter @GodandUs |

People define righteousness in different ways, and many people define it as many things; even the dictionary does. While, in one mention, the dictionary says righteousness means being moral, being just or being right, in another, it simply says very good, excellent. And, it is not hidden that some people refer to others as “holier than thou,” or being “self-righteous,” connoting that such people are hypocrites as they think of themselves as better than others.

So, what is righteousness? Let us consider one of the world’s definitions, meaning being moral. Now, morality is a good thing. It means living right according to human codes and expectations. In Luke 18:9-14, Jesus told the story of two men who went into the temple to pray. One was a Pharisee and the other was a tax collector. In verse 11, the Bible says:

The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, 'God, I thank You that I am not like other men-extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this tax collector.

Just by listening to this Pharisee’s prayer, we would already see the moral codes that he lives by: he does not extort, is not unjust, not an adulterer, and certainly not as wicked as the tax collector standing on the other side in the church. The Pharisee believes that he has earned good standing with God because of his works. On the other hand, the tax collector, knowing that his life and works could earn him nothing before God, cried to God for mercy. The Bible says that the tax collector went home justified before God while the Pharisee went home condemned.

As we could see, the world’s definition of righteousness certainly falls short of what God expects. In Romans 3:23, the Bible says that we have all sinned and fall short of the glory of God. We just can’t qualify by living right on our own. There is a right way to become righteous. In Genesis chapter 15 verse 6, the Bible says that Abraham believed God and He (God) accounted it to him (Abraham) for righteousness. What does this mean? We cannot become righteous outside of our faith in the Lord Jesus. He is the only person who lived as man and never sinned, so He is righteousness personified, and has the right to input it to those who believe in Him and rely on His finished work on the cross.

As we see in the Pharisee’s prayers in the temple, people claiming to be righteous by their own efforts and works did not start yesterday. It has been there even before the first coming of Jesus Christ, and we will continue to see it in our societies. The devil deceives many into thinking that they don’t need God. They point to their many achievements and tell you, I did these all on my own, and they list their moral achievements and award themselves the status of righteous.

No, we cannot be righteous outside of Christ. He. It is, who finished the work of redemption by providing Himself as sacrifice for our sins. We could never pay for those sins, but He did. Living morally is good, but it will never be enough. We need to humble ourselves and accept that Christ did what we could never do. We need to ask God to forgive us our sins and surrender our lives to Him. This is what makes us right with God. This is the only way to attain the status called righteous. Have you surrendered to Him yet?

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 If you are yet to give your life to Christ, you do not have a covenant with God and His promises do not apply to you. To come under these promises, please surrender your life to Christ today, by praying this prayer:
 Lord I know that I am a sinner and I am unable to save myself. I am sorry for my sins and I pray that you please forgive me. I am aware that Your Son Jesus died for my sins and I accept Him as my Lord and savior. I surrender my life unto you from this moment. Please take control of my entire being and help me to be obedient to your Word, going forward. Thank you, Lord, for hearing me. I have prayed in Jesus’ name. Amen.
 If you prayed the foregoing prayer, you have just been born again. Please find a Bible believing church in your area and ask to see the pastor. Let him or her know that you have just given your life to Christ and s/he will guide you on next steps in your journey as a child of God. The Lord bless you!

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