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He Is My Righteousness

Dictionaries define righteousness as “behavior that is morally justifiable or

right.” Such behavior is characterized by accepted standards of morality,

justice, virtue, or uprightness. The Bible’s standard of human righteousness

is God’s own perfection in every attribute, every attitude, every behavior,

and every word.

Thus,God’s laws, as given in the Bible, both describe His own character and constitute the plumb line by which He measures human righteousness.

The Greek New Testament word for “righteousness” primarily describes

conduct in relation to others, especially with regards to the rights of others

in business, in legal matters, and beginning with relationship to God. It is

contrasted with wickedness, the conduct of the one who, out of gross self-

centeredness, neither reveres God nor respects man. The Bible describes the

righteous person as just or right, holding to God and trusting in Him.

Psalms 33:18-22 –

18) For I will declare my iniquity; I will be in anguish over my sin.

19) But my enemies are vigorous, and they are strong; And those who hate

me wrongfully have multiplied.

20) Those also who render evil for good, They are my adversaries, because I

follow what is good.

21) Do not forsake me, O Lord;

O my God, be not far from me!

22) Make haste to help me, O Lord, my salvation!

The bad news is that true and perfect righteousness is not possible for man

to attain on his own; the standard is simply too high. The good news is that

true righteousness is possible for mankind, but only through the cleansing of

sin by Jesus Christ and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. We have no ability

to achieve righteousness in and of ourselves. But Christians possess the

righteousness of Christ, because “God made him who had no sin to be sin

for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God” (2

Corinthians 5:21).

This is an amazing truth. On the cross, Jesus exchanged our sin for His

perfect righteousness so that we can one day stand before God and He will

see not our sin, but the holy righteousness of the Lord Jesus.

This means that we are made righteous in the sight of God; that is, that we

are accepted as righteous and treated as righteous by God on account of

what the Lord Jesus has done. He was made sin; we are made

righteousness. On the cross, Jesus was treated as if He were a sinner,

though He was perfectly holy and pure, and we are treated as if we were

righteous, though we are defiled and depraved. On account of what the Lord

Jesus has endured on our behalf, we are treated as if we had entirely

fulfilled the Law of God and had never become exposed to its penalty. We

have received this precious gift of righteousness from the God of all mercy

and grace. To Him be the glory!


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