Righteous standards of morality, conduct, and lifestyle are under attack! If we want God’s blessing on our nation and in the world, we must pursue RIGHTEOUSNESS!
UNRIGHTEOUSNESS brings God’s curse and destruction — not His blessing! Sinfulness, evil, and wickedness needs to be exposed and eliminated – not embraced! Let’s continue to pray that UNRIGHTEOUSNESS is overturned among the nations, and that TRUE, GODLY RIGHTEOUSNESS (not man’s ‘psuedo-rightness’) IS REVEALED!
Proverbs 14:34 – Righteousness exalts a nation, But sin is a reproach (disgrace) to any people.
- (NLT) – Godliness makes a nation GREAT. (MSG) – GOD DEVOTION makes a nation GREAT / STRONG… GOD AVOIDANCE leaves people weak; (AMP) – Righteousness [moral and spiritual integrity and virtuous character] exalts a nation, But sin is a disgrace to any people; (EXB) – Doing what is right [Righteousness] makes a nation great! (TLV) – Being right with God makes a nation great, but sin is a shame to any people; (VOICE) – Being right with God makes a nation great, but sin is a shame to any people; (GW) – Righteousness lifts up a nation, but sin is a disgrace in any society.
- Special note: Being RIGHT from God’s perspective is what is being emphasized – not being RIGHT from a worldly perspective! Proverbs 12:15 – The way of a fool is right in his own eyes: but he that hearkens unto counsel (godly counsel) is wise. Proverbs 14:12; 16:25 – There is a way which seems right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.
IMPORTANCE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS
We are developing a sequel to 1) ‘Light Brings Freedom” — 2) “Righteousness Exalts a Nation!” In this post we can only share a few special highlights with you, since RIGHTEOUSNESS is a major theme throughout the Bible. We hope to share more, over time…
It is amazing to consider the Scriptural revelation about “righteousness”. Here are a few reminders of the important focus there is in Scripture about this subject:
- As already mentioned – Righteousness brings the blessing of God upon a nation... (Proverbs 14:34);
- Jesus said, “Seek first the kingdom of God AND HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS…” (Matt 6:33). Special note: RIGHTEOUSNESS is a central characteristic of His kingdom. He said we are to seek HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS along with His kingdom. His kingdom and RIGHTEOUSNESS are inseparable!
- “The kingdom of God is… RIGHTEOUSNESS, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit…” (Romans 14:17).
- “He leads in paths of righteousness for His names sake…” (Psalm 23:3).
- Jesus is made unto us righteousness — “of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us (is made unto us) wisdom from God and righteousness and sanctification and redemption“— I Corinthians 1:30.
GODLINESS IS PART OF GOD’S CREATIVE PLAN FOR MAN!
In the list of Christian virtues and character qualities that we are to continue to grow in, godliness is listed among them…
2 Peter 1:4-8 Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these you might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.5 And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; 6 And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; 7 And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.8 For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that you shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
I Timothy 2:2 – …that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.
2 Peter 3:11 – Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in all holy conversation and godliness…
Titus 1:1 – Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God’s elect, and the acknowledging of the truth which is after godliness…
I Timothy 4:7,8 – Refuse profane and old wives’ fables, and exercise yourself rather unto godliness.…godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come.
2 Timothy 3:5 – Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.
I Timothy 6:6,10-12 – But godliness with contentment is great gain…For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.11 But you, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness.
THE IMAGE OF GOD
Genesis 1:26,27; 9:6 – And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them... in the image of God made he man.
Romans 8:29 – …whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.
I Corinthians 15:49 – …as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly.
2 Corinthians 3:18 – …we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.
2 Corinthians 4:4 – …the god of this world has blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.
Colossians 1:14-16 – In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:15 Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature:16 For by him were all things created… all things were created by him, and for him…
Colossians 3:10 – And have put on the new man, which is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him:
Hebrews 1:3 – Who being the brightness of his glory, and the express image of his person, and upholding all things by the word of his power, when he had by himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high…
I Timothy 3:15 – …that you may know how you ought to behave yourself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.
Psalm 135:15-18 – The idols of the heathen are silver and gold, the work of men’s hands. 16 They have mouths, but they speak not; eyes have they, but they see not; 17 They have ears, but they hear not; neither is there any breath in their mouths. 18 They that make them are like unto them: so is every one that trusts in them.
Special note: We are not to worship false images and false gods. We become like who we worship. We are to worship the TRUE AND LIVING GOD, and become like Him!
What is righteousness?
Righteousness is the nature of God. We have been created to be in His image. He wants us to be like Him. To be RIGHTEOUS is to be godly, or god-like – conformed to His image, displaying His RIGHTEOUS characteristics.
RIGHTEOUSNESS means doing the RIGHT thing at the RIGHT time, and in the RIGHT way! It is a beautiful, godly characteristic displaying the nature of God. It is how we were created to be, and it brings great delight to the Lord when we pursue RIGHTEOUSNESS! It is what is to be seen by the life we live…
THE TWO WAYS
Titus 2:12 – …denying ungodliness and worldly lusts… live soberly, RIGHTEOUSLY, and godly in this world. (We must dentify what God calls sin! Sin is the opposite of righteousness – it is unrighteousness … (see below)!)
- Special note: There are 2 ways — 1) The way of RIGHTEOUSNESS AND GODLINESS, which is the way of life, good works, and good fruit. 2) The way of UNRIGHTEOUSNESS, UNGODLINESS AND SIN which is the way of death and destruction, bad works, and bad fruit (fruit & works of both ways seen below).
THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF JESUS IMPUTED TO US
2 Corinthians 5:17-21 -Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ… God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them… 21 For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him – (THE DIVINE EXCHANGE).
Philippians 1:6 – being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ…
Isaiah 41:10 – ‘Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand (right hand of my RIGHTEOUSNESS).’
I AM THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD IN CHRIST
Special note: Here is a link to the song: “I am the righteousness of God (in Christ)” on youtube. Please check it out. It is a powerful, Scripture-based song! (1) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v8a_cs25O48&ab_channel=DavidIngles-Topic
LYRICS OF THE CHORUS: “I am the RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD in Christ, a brand new creation in Him. I can now approach the presence of God, with no condemnation of sin! I am the RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD IN CHRIST, I am now complete in Him. I’m a partaker of His divine nature, on me He will not impute sin... (1)
righteousness – GOOD WORKS / GOOD FRUIT
Ephesians 2:10 – …we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.
Psalm 34:14; 37:3 – Depart from evil and do good; Seek peace and pursue it… Trust in the Lord, and do good; Dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness.
Mathew 5:16 – Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.
Matthew 25:35,36 – …for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; 36 I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’ (JESUS)
Luke 6:35 – But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil.
Hebrews 10:24 – …let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works...
Hebrews 13:16 – do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.
Colossians 1:10 – …that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God…
I Timothy 6:18 – Let them do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to give, willing to share…
Titus 2:7,14; 3:8 – in all things showing yourself to be a pattern of good works; in doctrine showing integrity, reverence, incorruptibility… 14) who gave Himself for us, that He (Jesus) might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works... This is a faithful saying, and these things I want you to affirm constantly, that those who have believed in God should be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable to men.
I Peter 2:12 – having your conduct honorable among the Gentiles, that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may, by your good works which they observe, glorify God in the day of visitation.
James 2:18,24 – But someone will say, “You have faith, and I have works.” Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works… You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only… For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.
I Thessalonians 1:3 – remembering without ceasing your work of faith, labor of love, and patience of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ in the sight of our God and Father,
2 Thessalonians 1:11;2:17 – Therefore we also pray always for you that our God would count you worthy of this calling, and fulfill all the good pleasure of His goodness and the work of faith with power… comfort your hearts and establish you in every good word and woRK!
Psalm 73:28 – But it is good for me to draw near to God; I have put my trust in the Lord God, That I may declare all Your works.
Romans 13:3 – Do what is good, and you will have praise from the same.
2 Corinthians 9:8 – And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.
Ephesians 4:28 – Let him who stole steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need.
Philippians 2:13 – for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure.
2 Timothy 2:21 – Therefore if anyone cleanses himself from the latter, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified and useful for the Master, prepared for every good work.
2 Timothy 3:16,17 – All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.
- Special note: The above verses enumerate some GOOD WORKS, but of course there are so many more GOOD WORKS AND GOOD FRUIT that could be emphasized if we took the time – pursuit of wisdom; honesty and truthfulness; purity; testimony and witnessing; etc…
THE FRUIT TEST
Matthew 7:15-20 – “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. 16 You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? 17 Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Therefore by their fruits you will know them.
John 15:1-17 – … 2 Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit...4 Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me. 5 “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. 6 If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned. 7 If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. 8 By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples. 9 “As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. 10 If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love. 11 “These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full. 12 This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. 14 You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. 15 No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you. 17 These things I command you, that you love one another.
BASIS OF RIGHTEOUSNESS
God gives us the standard of what is RIGHT. It is not based on man’s ideas. There are some who want to base “rightness” on what they think is right, instead of what God says is right in His Word. They think God’s standards are irrelative to the modern age. They want standards to be relative to what they think, feel, or experience and not based on the absolute standards of God’s Word.
Is truth just relative and subjective? No! Obviously, there is an absolute truth!
The basis of truth is found in found in Scripture. Some make their own ideas and own philosophies their standard of ‘rightness’, that don’t line up with the righteous standards of God’s Word. There are some prevalent New Age teachings that are inclusive of many beliefs that don’t adhere to Scripture. Do all paths lead to the same God? That’s nonsense! Absolutely not! Jesus taught that His way is the only way to the Father (John 14:6; Acts 4:12)! Jesus taught about 2 ways. If we are not going God’s way – we are going the devils way! There is a division – we can’t ride the fence and go both ways at the same time! Some are not going to heaven, but are going the path of destruction that leads to hell.
Matthew 7:13-14 – “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. 14 Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.
There is RIGHT living that is life-giving, there is also WRONG living that leads to death and destruction. That is clearly and taught in Scripture – make no mistake about it! Heaven and hell are both very real! Jesus taught that no man comes to the Father but by Him (John 14:6). Jesus came to bring abundant life (John 10:10). The devil is out to kill, steal, and destroy (John 10:10).
Does God define SIN? Yes – most definitely! Jesus clearly identifies unrighteousness, and wrong living. He said he came to call SINNERS TO REPENTANCE. Sinners need to know what SIN is, to be brought to repentance, and so they know what is to be repented of. (see below)
Sadly, there are some who want to rule God out of everything, and don’t want to hear what He has to say to them... They pridefully think they are smarter than God. There is coming a dreadful time of God’s judgment upon scoffers, and unbelievers.
Titus 1:16 – They profess to know God, but in works they deny Him, being abominable, disobedient, and disqualified for every good work.
I John 5:17 – All unrighteousness is sin…
- Special note: What is sin? The Bible clearly describes all unrighteousness as SIN! There are also other descriptions in Scripture – (see below).
I John 3:4; Romans 3:20 – Whosoever commits sin transgresses also the law (God’s RIGHTEOUS Word): for sin is the transgression of the law (God’s RIGHTEOUS WORD)… by the law is the knowledge of sin.
Romans 14:23 – … whatsoever is not of faith is sin.
Proverbs 24:9 – The thought of foolishness is sin: and the scorner is an abomination to men.
James 4:17 – Therefore to him that knows to do good, and does it not, to him it is sin.
Proverbs 21:4 – A high look, and a proud heart, and the plowing of the wicked, is sin.
I Samuel 15:24 – For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, he has also rejected you...
OTHER BIBLICAL DESCRIPTIONS OF SINFUL ACTIVITIES
Revelation 21:8 – But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”
Galatians 5:19-21 – Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, 21 envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
James 4:4 – Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.
Luke 21:34 – “…take heed to yourselves, lest your hearts be weighed down with SURFEITING (NKV-carousing ; AMP – giddiness of debauchery and the nausea of self-indulgence; CEB – drinking parties; ERV – having parties and getting drunk; ESV – dissipation; GNT – occupied with too much feasting and drinking; ISV – loaded down with self-indulgence; MEV- burdened by excessiveness; NIRV – loaded down with wasteful living; NMB – excess of eating; VOICE – made heavy with moral laxity; WYC – gluttony); drunkenness, and cares of this life, and that Day come on you unexpectedly. (JESUS)
Titus 2:12 – teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age…
James 3:14-16 – …if you have bitter envy and self-seeking in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth. 15 This wisdom does not descend from above, but is earthly, sensual, demonic. 16 For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there.
Jude 14-15 – “Behold, the Lord comes… 15 to execute judgment on all, to convict all who are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have committed in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him.”
Proverbs 1:16; 6:18 – …their feet run to evil, and make haste to shed blood... A heart that devises wicked imaginations (plans), Feet that are swift in running to evil…
Isaiah 59:7 – Their feet run to evil, and they make haste to shed innocent blood; Their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity; Wasting and destruction are in their paths.
- Special note: The above verses enumerate some BAD WORKS, but of course there are so many more BAD WORKS AND BAD FRUIT that could be emphasized if we took the time – the pursuit of wastefulness and foolishness; all kinds of sexual immorality and perversion; impurity; shameful living; false testimony and hiding the truth; etc…
OTHER SCRIPTURES ABOUT SIN AND FORGIVENESS FOR SIN
Psalm 19:7-13 – The law (God’s RIGHTEOUS Word) of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul;
The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple; 8 The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart;
The commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes; 9 The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever;
The judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether... 11 Moreover by them Your servant is warned,
and in keeping them there is great reward. 12 Who can understand his errors? Cleanse me from secret faults.
13 Keep back Your servant also from presumptuous sins; Let them not have dominion over me. Then I shall be blameless, and I shall be innocent of great transgression.
I John 1:9 – If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
James 5:16 – Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that you may be healed.
Romans 4:8 – Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.
2 Chronicles 7:14 – If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.
Isaiah 53:5,6 – But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; …6 All we like sheep have gone astray; We have turned, every one, to his own way; And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.
Psalm 1:1,5 – Blessed is the man that walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of the scornful... Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
Proverbs 14:9 – Fools make a mock at sin: but among the righteous there is favour.
Psalm 4:4 – Stand in awe, and sin not...
Psalm 19:13 – Keep back your servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me: then shall I be upright, and I shall be innocent from the great transgression.
Psalm 25:8 – Good and upright is the Lord: therefore will he teach sinners in the way.
Psalm 25:18 – ...forgive all my sins.
Psalm 32:1,5 – Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered... I acknowledge my sin unto you, and my iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord; and you forgave the iniquity of my sin. Selah.
Psalm 51:9 – Hide your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities.
Psalm 59:12 – For the sin of their mouth and the words of their lips let them even be taken in their pride:
Psalm 69:5 – O God, you know my foolishness; and my sins are not hid from you.
Psalm 78:17,32 – ..they sinned yet more against him by provoking the most High in the wilderness… For all this they sinned still, and believed not for his wondrous works.
Psalm 79:9 – …deliver us, and purge away our sins, for thy name’s sake.
Isaiah 1:4 – Alas, sinful nation, a people laden with iniquity, A brood of evildoers, Children who are corrupters!
They have forsaken the Lord. They have provoked to anger The Holy One of Israel. They have turned away backward. “Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean; Put away the evil of your doings from before My eyes. Cease to do evil, 7 Learn to do good; …18 “Come now, and let us reason together,” Says the Lord, “Though your sins are like scarlet, They shall be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, They shall be as wool. 19 If you are willing and obedient, You shall eat the good of the land; 20 But if you refuse and rebel, You shall be devoured by the sword”; For the mouth of the Lord has spoken.
Proverbs 19:2 – That the soul be without knowledge, it is not good; and he that hastens with his feet sins.
Proverbs 10:19 – In the multitude of words there wants not sin: but he that refrains his lips is wise.
Proverbs 14:21 – He that despises his neighbor sins: but he that has mercy on the poor, happy is he.
Genesis 13:13; 18:20 – … the men of Sodom were wicked and sinners before the Lord exceedingly… the Lord said, Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grievous;
Exodus 9:34; 10:16,17; – …when Pharaoh saw that the rain and the hail and the thunders were ceased, he sinned yet more, and hardened his heart, he and his servants... Then Pharaoh called for Moses and Aaron in haste; and he said, I have sinned against the Lord your God, and against you. Now therefore forgive, I pray you, my sin only this once, and intreat the Lord your God, that he may take away from me this death…
Exodus 32;30-34 -And it came to pass on the morrow, that Moses said unto the people, You have sinned a great sin: and now I will go up unto the Lord; peradventure I shall make an atonement for your sin. And Moses returned unto the Lord, and said, Oh, this people have sinned a great sin, and have made them gods of gold.Yet now, if you will forgive their sin–; and if not, blot me, I pray you, out of your book which you have written. And the Lord said unto Moses, Whosoever has sinned against me, him will I blot out of my book… in the day when I visit I will visit their sin upon them.
Lamentation 1:8 – Jerusalem has grievously sinned; therefore she is removed…
Ezekiel 3:21 – if you warn the righteous man, that the righteous sin not, and he does not sin, he shall surely live, because he is warned; also you have delivered your soul.
Ezekiel 33:13-15 – When I shall say to the righteous, that he shall surely live; if he trust to his own righteousness, and commit iniquity, all his righteousnesses shall not be remembered; but for his iniquity that he has committed, he shall die for it. 14 Again, when I say unto the wicked, you shall surely die; IF he turn from his sin, and do that which is lawful and right; 15 If the wicked restore the pledge, give again that he had robbed, walk in the statutes of life, without committing iniquity; he shall surely live, he shall not die.
Ezekiel 18:4 – ...the soul that sins, it shall die.
Romans 3:23; 6:23 – for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God… the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Matthew 26:28 – For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.
Luke 11:4 – (Prayer Jesus taught the disciples to pray) …forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.
Luke 15:10 – Likewise, I say unto you, there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner that repents.
John 8:34 – Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever commits sin is the servant of sin.
Romans 6:6; 8:10 – Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin... And if Christ be in you, the body is dead because of sin; but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.
John 16:8 – And when he (Holy Spirit) is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:
Acts 13:38; 26:18 – Be it known unto you,,, that through this man (Jesus) is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins… Be it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this man is preached unto you the forgiveness of sins… To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins…
Hebrews 3:13 – But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.
Matthew 25:4-5, 11-12 – And Jesus answered and said to them: “Take heed that no one deceives you. 5 For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many... 11-12) Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many. 12 And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold.
Special note: Whether people want to believe it or not, the Bible makes it clear what sin is, and the dreadful consequences of it. There needs to be genuine repentance for SIN, and turning away from any involvement with SIN. In these last days there is escalating deception. Rampant sin, and the deceitfulness of SIN is everywhere. The good news is that upon genuine repentance for SIN, forgiveness can be found through the finished work of the cross, and loving sacrifice Jesus made for the atonement and remission of sins! As seen above in 2 Chronicles 7:14 – when we humbly pray, and seek God, and are willing to turn from our wicked ways, God will lovingly and faithfully hear from heaven, forgive our sins, and heal our land!
Proverbs 1:20-33 … Wisdom cries… how long will scorners delight in their scorning and fools hate knowledge? Turn at my rebuke (repent)- I will pour out my spirit on you; I will make known my words unto you. Because I have called and you refused... I will laugh at your calamity...when your terror comes… and your destruction comes like a whirlwind, when distress and anguish comes upon you... because they hated knowledge, and despised my every rebuke, therefore they shall eat the fruit of their own way, and be filled to the full with their own fancies. The turning away of the simple will slay them, and the complacency of fools will destroy them…
Hebrews 9:27 – …it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment…
2 Corinthians 5:10-11 – For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad. 11 Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade men…
WHAT DID JESUS SAY ABOUT RIGHTEOUSNESS?
Matthew 3:15 – (about being baptized) … thus it becomes us to fulfill all righteousness.
Matthew 5:6 – Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
Matthew 5:10 – Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Matthew 5:20 – For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.
Matthew 6:33 – But seek first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
Matthew 9:13 – I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.
Matthew 10:41 – …he that receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward.
Matthew 13:43 – Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who has ears to hear, let him hear.
Matthew 23:28,29 – Even so you also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within you are full of hypocrisy and iniquity. Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because you build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous…
Matthew 25:34-46 – Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 35 for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; 36 I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’37 “Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? 38 When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? 39 Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ 40 And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’ 41 “Then He will also say to those on the left hand, ‘Depart from Me, you cursed, into the everlasting fire prepared for the devil and his angels: 42 for I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink; 43 I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me.’44 “Then they also will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You?’ 45 Then He will answer them, saying, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’ 46 And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”
Luke 18:9-14 – Also He spoke this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: 10 “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, ‘God, I thank You that I am not like other men—extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I possess.’ 13 And the tax collector, standing afar off, would not so much as raise his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me a sinner!’ 14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”
John 7:24 – Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.
John 16:18 – when he (Holy Spirit) is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment... Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and you see me no more…
John 17:25 – O righteous Father, the world has not known you: but I have known you, and these have known that you have sent me.
THE LORD IS RIGHTEOUS
Psalm 145:17 – The Lord is righteous in all of His ways..
- Special note: As noted above, this post is a portion of part 2 in a 3-part TRILOGY SERIES –1st – “Light Brings Freedom”; 2nd “Righteousness Exalts a Nation”; 3rd – “A Glorious Future”!
GOD PROMISES TO BLESS A NATION THAT UPHOLDS & DEMONSTRATES RIGHTEOUSNESS
Psalm 33:12 – Blessed is the NATION whose God is the Lord! – the people whom He has chosen.
Ps. 1:6 – the Lord knows the way of the RIGHTEOUS, but the way of the UNGODLY shall perish.
Psalm 37:23 – The steps of a GOOD MAN are ordered of the Lord, and He delights in His way.
Psalm 146:8 – The Lord loves the RIGHTEOUS!
Psalm 33:5 – The Word of the Lord is RIGHT… (5) He loves RIGHTEOUSNESS. The earth is full of His goodness.
Psalm 37:17-18 – The Lord upholds the RIGHTEOUS – He knows the days of the UPRIGHT – their inheritance shall be forever.
Ps. 11:3 – “If the foundations [of a godly society] are destroyed, what can THE RIGHTEOUS do?” (AMP); When the foundations [ a stable society] collapse, what can good [righteous] people do?” (EXB); When the foundations of life are undermined, what can a righteous person do?” (NOG); When law and order are being destroyed, what can godly people do?”(NIRV) If the base of the building is destroyed, what can those who are right with God do?” (NLV)
The foundations of law and order have collapsed. What can the righteous do?”(NLT) If the foundations are destroyed, what can be done by those who are righteous?” (NCB)
Prov. 11:3,4, 5,8,10,11,18,19,20,21,23,27,28 – (3,5) INTEGRITY OF THE UPRIGHT shall guide them. (RIGHTEOUSNESS gives direction). (4) RIGHTEOUSNESS delivers from death. (8) The RIGHTEOUS are delivered out of trouble. …(10)when it goes well with the RIGHTEOUS the city rejoices. (11) By the blessing of the UPRIGHT the city is exalted. (18)…to him that sows RIGHTEOUSNESS shall be a sure reward. (19) RIGHTEOUSNESS tends to life. (20) Such as are UPRIGHT in their way are the Lord’s delight. (21) The seed of the RIGHTEOUS shall be delivered. (23) The desire of the RIGHTEOUS is only good… (27) He that diligently seeks good procures favor. (28) The RIGHTEOUS shall flourish as a branch. (30) The fruit of the RIGHTEOUS is a tree of life.
Proverbs 10:2 – RIGHTEOUSNESS delivers from death…
- Special note: There is power and authority in righteousness. It gives victory in battles, and helps us to overcome the wicked forces of evil and darkness, and temptations of the devil! The power of the Spirit of God who dwells with us is greater than that that of the world (I John 4:4). HALLELUJAH!
Psalm 37:23 – The steps of a GOOD MAN are ordered of the Lord, and He delights in His way.
SOME special, HELPFUL SCRIPTURES THAT ENCOURAGE RIGHTEOUSNESS
Matt 6:33 – Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness… (as noted above).
Psalm 23:3 – … He restores my soul, and leads me in paths of RIGHTEOUSNESS! (as noted above).
Psalm 33:5 The Lord loves RIGHTEOUSNESS... (as noted above).
Ps. 17:15 – As for me, I will see Your face in righteousness; I shall be satisfied when I awake in Your likeness.
Hosea 10:12 – Sow for yourselves righteousness; Reap in mercy; Break up your fallow ground, For it is time to seek the Lord, Till He comes and rains righteousness on you.
Ephesians 4:23-24 – …be renewed in the spirit of your mind, 24 and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness.
- 2 Peter 1:4 –( …there are exceeding great and precious promises – that we might be partakers of His divine nature – righteousness and holiness reveals His nature!).
Proverbs 15: 9– The way of the wicked is an abomination unto the Lord: but he loves him that follows after righteousness.
THE LORD RULES WITH A SCEPTRE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS – IT IS THE SCEPTOR OF HIS KINGDOM
Psalm 45:4 – Your throne, O God, is forever and ever; A scepter of righteousness is the scepter of Your kingdom.
Romans 14:17 – the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.
Job 12:23-24 – “He makes nations great, and destroys them; he enlarges nations, and disperses them.
- Special note: We must live in the healthy, wholesome, and awesome FEAR OF GOD! Ultimately ALL PEOPLE in EVERY NATION must give account for themself before the LORD GOD ALMIGHTY! (Romans 14:12)
John 16:8,10,14 – The work of the Holy Spirit – RIGHTEOUSNESS! … The work of the Holy Spirit is to glorify Jesus! Jesus is made unto us… RIGHTEOUSNESS! (as seen in I Corinthians 1:30 above).
RIGHTEOUSNESS BLESSES A NATION
As we have clearly seen in Proverbs 14:34, when the GODLY STANDARDS OF RIGHTEOUSNESS ARE UPHELD, it brings great blessing and honor! However, when they are ignored, and unrighteous standards are given place, the consequences ultimately bring God’s curse and judgment upon the nations, instead of His blessings.
We can either choose His established, righteous standardS, or our own UNRIGHTEOUS STANDARDS! There is no place for ‘fence-riding’, or the compromise of ‘middle ground’. Jesus said, “..he that is not against us is for us.” (Mark 9:40; Luke 9:50). The opposite must also be true – he that is not for us, is against us…!
We need to see the nations adhere to God’s righteous standards. The RIGHTEOUS STANDARDS of God are found in the HOLY SCRIPTURES where His moral law for all mankind is revealed. Nations rise and fall depending on their willingness to abide by, and obediently keep His commandments!
The benefits of righteousness are beyond imagination! Through Righteousness we are brought closer to God, and are able to become more like HIm. Our fellowship with God is enriched, and it is a lifestyle that pleases Him. He LOVES RIGHTEOUSNESS manifested in His people because we were created to be like Him! Divine fellowship with God is restored. (Adam and Eve had a wonderful relationship with God, but the consequences were dreadful when they fell in their sin and disobedience, and they chose unrighteousness instead of RIGHTEOUSNESS ).
When we live righteously, our life is lived in an upright manner. Our moral standards reflect our relationship with the Lord, and loving obedience to His instructions. As representatives to the kingdom of God in all that we do, we want to Live worthy of Jesus, and to REFLECT his ways. This means that when we are faced with temptations to do evil, instead of doing those things – we are willing to do what is right...!
- Special acknowledgement and thanks to David Ingles for his song: I AM THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD (IN CHRIST) available on youtube.