How to become righteous.
The bible speaks a lot about being righteous. But can we be righteous before God? We see a world full of sin and decadence. People are cruel to one another, and the news and TV is often quite depressing. It is easy to look at sin, that we perceive as worse then our own, and think were not doing so bad ourselves. But God’s word helps us to keep the right perspective.
“But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like
the wind, have taken us away.” ISA. 64.6
These seem like harsh words. We may be living quite normal lives, in comparison to what we read in the paper, or see on TV. God doesn’t see it that way.
“For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point
he is guilty of all.” JAMES 2.10
This helps to put things in perspective. Were are all guilty, every day, of breaking the whole law. Even the worst murderer, or rapist, might be nice to his mother. So being guilty of breaking all the law, we are no better then the person sitting in prison on death row. We may not be as righteous as we thought we were, perhaps God will still allow us into heaven.
” Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God?”
Now you might begin to wonder, how righteous does a person have to be, to enter into the kingdom of God? Jesus said,
” Except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of God.” MATH. 5.20
The scribes and Pharisees spent every waking hour, working on being righteous. So what chance do any of us have, in exceeding their righteousness? All would seem to be hopeless. Why even try?
“But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth
the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.” ROM. 4.5
Our faith in Jesus, who died on the cross for all sinners, is what makes us righteous, and nothing else. How wonderful our God is, who sent his Son to make us righteous.
“Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe; for there is no difference; For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.” ROM. 3.22-23
It is wonderful to know that we can’t live up to God’s standards, but he sent Jesus our Saviour, who lived up to those standards for us.