Righteousness is what God would like all sinners to understand possibly as much as anything else. We Christians certainly should know what it is and practice it in our daily lives.
Webster’s dictionary refers to righteousness as: 1. acting rightly; 2. Morally right or justifiable (righteous actions).
Holman’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary has these things to allude to in the New Testament:
In the NT as in the OT, God and all that comes from Him is righteous (2 Thess. 1:5-6; Rev. 16:7, 19:2; 2 Tim. 4:8), as He Himself is a judge (John 17:23). All God’s revealed will in Jesus’ teachings is righteousness (Matt. 6:23;John 16:8-10).
Paul utilizes the idea of righteousness more than other writers in the NT. God demonstrates His righteousness perfectly in the propitiatory death of His Son (Rom. 3:21,25,26). Jesus’ death on the cross was ordained by God, is in conformity with His character, and accomplished God’s righteous purposes with sinners (Rom. 5:16,18). Righteousness is revealed clearly in the gospel (Rom. 1:16-17). Therefore God’s indignation towards sin and His covenant love in justifying sinners are both realized in Jesus death. Romans 3:6 parallels God’s righteousness with His love and faithfulness (Pss. 116:5; 145:17). The resurrection of Christ vindicates Christ (Acts 3:14-15; 1 Pet. 2:23; 3:18; 1 Tim. 3:16) and completes God’s transaction between fallen humanity and Jesus. “He made the One who did not know sin to be sin for us, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Cor. 5:2) who believe in Christ. (Rom. 3:26). Thus, the righteous live no other way but faith (Hab. 2:4; Rom. 1:16-17), for through faith they are granted the righteousness of God.
Man is not naturally righteous (Pss. 14:1; 53:1, Rom. 3:10-18).Righteousness is not native to him but to God. In Jesus teaching of the righteousness of the Pharisees is not enough to gain entrance into the kingdom of God (Matt. 5:20). Paul argues in Romans 3 that no man is naturally righteous. Even after conversion Paul speaks of the struggle to follow the law of righteousness and not the law he finds in his “body of death” (Rom. 7:14-8:1). God credits righteousness to those who exercise faith in Him (Rom. 4:15). In Christ one becomes all that God requires (2 Cor. 5:21; Rom. 4:6,14). The result of becoming the righteousness of God is a life of righteousness before God. Paul urges believers to continue to offer up the members of their bodies as instruments of righteousness to God (Rom. 6:13). The Christian is urged to put on the breastplate of righteousness (Eph. 6:14). Timothy is exhorted to flee youthful lusts, call on God from a pure heart, and pursue righteousness (2 Tim. 4:8). Those trained through discipline produce the peaceful fruit of righteousness (Heb. 12:9-11).
In James the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God (James 1:2), but the prayer of the righteous man does achieve much (James 5:16). In Revelation Jesus comes back to judge in righteousness (Rev. 16:7; 19:2).
God’s Righteousness Through Faith
21 But now the righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, 22 even the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe. For there is no difference; 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed, 26 to demonstrate at the present time His righteousness, that He might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.
Righteousness – “God’s standard of purity” or “God’s own truthfulness and faithfulness”; God is holy, therefore He cannot tolerate sin. It is through Jesus Christ that we can find righteousness that is acceptable to God. Christ not only takes away our sin, but He grants us His perfect purity.
Jeremiah 9:23-24 23 Thus says the Lord: “Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, 24 but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness on the earth. For in these things I delight, declares the Lord.”
God is testing us every day and has given us the right to make our own choices. Do you know which ones are the right choices in Gods mind?
Fear God, love God, honor God, and trust God with all your heart, mind and soul and you will receive and experience the joy of the promises of God’s blessings in His time.
Prayer: Father in heaven, hallowed is Thy Name. I praise You for Your Son and the Holy Spirit. I praise You for Your grace in sending us Your wisdom about “Righteousness.” Please bless all those who have read this article for they too are seeking Your righteous truth, love, wisdom and understanding.
May God, Jesus, The Holy Spirit and Christianity be our guiding lights, our safety nets and our inspiration for loving happiness in all of Your kingdom. Father into your hands I commend my spirit. Not my will, but Yours be done. Please come Lord Jesus.
I pray in Jesus sweet name and to His glory through the power of the Holy Spirit,