BY: MAX ENDE
Righteousness is a word that has been bandied about by men since, well, as long as men were on the earth. What exactly is righteousness. The Church leaders would have us believe that righteousness is ‘right standing with God.’ Close, but no cigar. In fact since it is only close it misses the mark completely and therefore is a worthless definition. Righteousness can be summed up in only one word… Christ.
Paul say’s… Rom 8:10 But if Christ is in you, your body is dead because of sin, yet your spirit is alive because of righteousness.
What righteousness? The righteousness of Christ. So can we conclude that Jesus Christ was a righteous man and that His ‘right standing with God’ makes us alive? No. Christ’s acts were righteous by our carnal definition of righteousness. But remember, not everyone thought Jesus was righteous. The Counsel considered Him a dangerous sinner because He showed a righteousness that was apart from their teachings and therefore was perverse in their sight. They were works and acts conscious and not faith conscious.
Look at it this way. Do not consider Jesus Christ as righteous (which is carnality)… He is in truth righteousness. Jesus Christ is the Righteousness of God that the Father presented to the world. According to God Himself, His Son is the sum of all His righteousness. In other words, He (Jesus) is the mark we all missed. He is the glory of God we fell short of. He is the righteousness of God. Therefore He was not righteous because He followed the law and did no sin. He is righteousness Himself. So then we must conclude that righteousness is not what you do or do not do. It is who you are.
How can I say this? The Holy Spirit agrees with me by Paul… 2 COR 5:21 God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
1 COR 1:30 It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God – that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. 31] Therefore, as it is written: “Let him who boasts boast in the Lord.”
You see by these passages that Christ did not make us righteous. He made us the righteousness of God. We are not now righteous men and women. We are in Christ. Therefore we have a righteousness that is given to us.
Paul calls this Righteousness from God “a righteousness apart from the Law.” He said this knowing the truth of the Gospel that was revealed to him by the Holy Spirit. In human terms a man may consider himself righteous or unrighteous according to his acts of will. The truth is very different. There is only one measure of righteousness in all of creation… Jesus Christ.
Therefore if Christ is in you then you are the righteousness of God in Christ. This gift is given without repentance. It does not matter whether you consider your acts sinful or righteous. The truth is, in and of yourself you cannot produce anything righteous. Thank God our Father forever and ever all that matters is Christ.
GAL 3:6-9 6] Consider Abraham: “He believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.” 7] Understand, then, that those who believe are children of Abraham. 8] The Scripture foresaw that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, and announced the gospel in advance to Abraham: “All nations will be blessed through you.” 9] So those who have faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith.
GAL 3:10-14 10] All who rely on observing the law are under a curse, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who does not continue to do everything written in the Book of the Law.” 11] Clearly no one is justified before God by the law, because, “The righteous will live by faith.” 12] The law is not based on faith; on the contrary, “The man who does these things will live by them.” 13] Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, for it is written: “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.” 14] He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus, so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit.
Then what about our sin?
RIGHTEOUSNESS [Max Ende] 1