What Is RIGHTEOUSNESS? Part 1

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When I was young, I remember rushing to the side of the road when a military convoy would drive by. What joy I’d feel waving to the soldiers. My spirit would lift, and my heart puffed with patriotism. I thank God for those who currently serve and those who gave their lives for this country. And hearing the words of The Battle Hymn of the Republic and America the Beautiful, I’m inspired to work and fight right alongside these brave individuals to preserve the freedom God bestowed upon this nation.

 

Sadly, this freedom is being stripped away. And while it feels like it happened overnight, in reality, it’s been happening for at least 75 years. Our nation has slowly and systematically expelled the One True and Living God from schools, courts, government, businesses, and our everyday lives.

 

Why would we do such a thing when we, of all nations, have been so blessed?

 

Evil—pure, unadulterated evil.

 

In Matthew 24, Jesus addressed the disciples’ questions about the signs of the end, and the first sign He gave was deception. “…Jesus answered…Take heed that no one deceives you….”[1]

 

We have been in an unseen battle with evil since sin entered the world. And it’s growing more intense the closer we get to the end. False teachers deliver a watered-down gospel. They secretly bring in destructive heresies and even deny the Lord who bought them. By covetousness or greed, which Colossians 3:5 tells us is idolatry, they exploit with deceptive words. Peter compares these deceivers to natural brute beasts made to be caught and destroyed.[2]

 

These, who facilitate the falling away, speak evil of things they don’t understand. They use great swelling words of emptiness, alluring believers through the lust of the flesh. They have forsaken the right way and gone astray. They are wells without water, mists carried by a storm, and God has reserved the blackest darkness for them.[3]

 

If false teachers appeared like brute beasts, we would reject their words immediately, but they don’t. Instead, they present themselves in business attire, with a list of degrees from the most prestigious universities.

 

And, they aren’t always “church” people. Sometimes they’re politicians, globalists, and “kings” from foreign countries. But these are of their father, the devil, the liar, and murderer from the beginning. He presents himself as an angel of light. Therefore, his deceitful workers transform themselves into ministers of righteousness.[4]

 

So, what is righteousness?

 

Righteousness is the quality or state of being righteous—morally right or virtuous.[5] Righteousness is also a synonym of godliness, and these wolves are far from godly. They use trickery and the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting.[6] In other words, they deliberately lie.

 

Yet, we know, “there is none righteous, no not one…for all have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory.”[7] And since ALL includes us, where then is our hope?

 

It’s certainly not in good deeds or human righteousness. Why? Because compared to a Holy God, all our sin-tainted righteousnesses are as filthy rags.[8] And by the deeds of the law, no flesh will be justified—declared righteous—in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin. [9]

 

Righteousness is of God. It is revealed “…through faith in Jesus Christ to all and on all who believe….”[10] For “whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God….”[11]

 

Paul informed the Philippian church any righteousness he possessed came from God through faith in Christ. And Peter said, “…in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord…His divine power has given us all things pertaining to life and godliness….”[12]

 

Don’t be deceived—false teachers have fake righteousness. Only we, who are born of God, keep ourselves and live righteously because Jesus the Christ, God the Son, is THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS.[13]

 

Everything we are, everything we do in the body, is contingent upon Jesus, who He is, and what He has done for us.[14]                                             

 



[1] Matthew 24:4

[2] II Peter 2:1-3, 12a

[3] II Thessalonians 2:2:3; II Peter 2:12b-18

[4] John 8:44; II Corinthians 11:13-15

[5] Dictionary.com

[6] Ephesians 4:14

[7] Romans 3:10-11, 23

[8] Isaiah 64:6

[9] Romans 3:20

[10] Romans 3:21-22

[11] 1 John 5:1

[12] Philippians 3:9; II Peter 1:2-3

[13] I John 5:18; Jeremiah 23:5-6

[14] John 15:5

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