Monday, May 31, 2021

Receiving Righteousness: Praying Boldly

 

For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. 2 Corinthians 5:21 KJV

For if by the offense of the one, death reigned through the one, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.
Romans 5:17 NASB

We have been in an extended study of Righteousness over the last few weeks. We have seen the importance of not just knowing we are Righteous but actively receiving of this great gift. We have seen the multiple benefits of receiving Righteousness.

 Relationships, how we can have victory despite our failures, laying hold of healing, just some of the powerful truths understood and received through the precious gift of Righteousness. Today, it seems good to explore yet another benefit of Righteousness received. Our prayer life will radically change when we know we are the Righteous. 

  The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. James 5:16b NKJV

 Further illustrating the benefit of Righteousness, James goes on in this same chapter describing Elijah as a man of like passions as any one of us. In other words, it wasn't that the Prophet Elijah was someone unique or special in the sense that only his prayers would have worked. James is letting us know that Elijah was just as imperfect and flawed as the rest of us, but he was Righteous and God heard him.

 Prayer may seem boring or drudgery or a chore to those believers who don't understand who they are in Christ, and lack the full knowledge of just how much God loves them. Some see prayer as a spiritual rule and a task they must complete. It is not communing with a loving Father but rather an obligation that requires fulfillment. 

 We must renew our minds about prayer. Prayer is all about communing and intimate fellowship with a loving Father. It is true that there are various types of prayer, the prayer of Faith, or petition prayer, intercessory prayer, the prayer of commitment, and consecration, etc. No matter the type of prayer we pray it is still a time of communing with our Good Father.

 It is not a chore or a hard task to spend time with someone who greatly loves us and longs to bless us. It isn't a mere religious obligation needing fulfillment to fellowship with a friend. It isn't a burden to spend quality time with the one we love. Prayer and devotional time are no different. We are engaging in intimate fellowship with a loving Father, who desires our best and wants nothing but our good when we pray. The more we know how pleased God is with us and how much He rejoices over us with joy, the more exuberant and fulfilling prayer will become for us. We are gladly welcomed in the presence of God. 

 Too often though, even if we do spend time in prayer, many believers come to the Father as if they were unworthy. They see themselves as beggars. They see themselves as mere servants begging for a meager morsel to barely get by for a day. 
Is this the posture God seeks from His kids? 

This is the posture religious tradition has painted for the Church for centuries. Unworthy. Unqualified. Unfit. 

 When we receive of the Gift of Righteousness these mindsets are shattered and these strongholds in our thinking come crashing down. We rise up as the Righteous sons and daughters of God and take our place at the King's table. We boldly receive all He has provided for us.

 I am not speaking of an arrogant, petulant demanding of our Father. No, God gives Grace to the humble. I am speaking of that Cross. I am speaking of such amazing Love that gave all He was for all we are not. A wondrously loving Savior who for the joy set before Him gladly gave His all for us. We honor our Father and our Savior King Jesus when we boldly receive all He purchased for us on that cursed tree.

 For years, many taught the Church that we were the mere stewards of God. That we were God's servants. Is that our position in Christ? Did God send His Son so He could have an innumerable number of servants? This thinking is rooted in the mindset that God is the harsh taskmaster who looks for dutiful servants to complete all the tasks he assigns. 

 We are not the servants of God. In identity, we are the children of God. We are His family. God in a sense, sowed His Son to reap a family. We are the beloved children of an extravagantly loving Father who longs to fellowship and bestow kindness and mercy upon us. Our Father so loves us He eagerly lavishes us with His Goodness. We who believed are the beloved sons in whom He is well pleased.

And because you are sons, God has sent forth into our hearts the Spirit of His Son, crying, “Abba, Father!” Therefore you are no longer a servant, but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ. Galatians 4:6-7 MEV

 Brother, didn't Paul call himself a servant of God? Yes, he did in some of his greetings to the churches. We know the Word doesn't contradict itself. Paul was referencing his work, his calling, his purpose. Saying it this way, in identity, he, like all believers, are sons and daughters. What we do is serve the Lord, serve one another, and we even serve the lost, in the sense of providing shelter or clothing or sustenance and in showing the way of salvation through Christ alone. We are sons who operate in steward or servant principles.  The point is in our identity we aren't slaves or unworthy servants without rights and privileges that come with sonship. 

 When we receive of the great Gift of Righteousness our prayer life is transformed greatly. We are no longer the servants begging for crumbs. We no longer see ourselves as the unworthy pleading to enter the Master's presence. We arise to take our place in Christ. We boldly enter in and feast at the King's table without reservation and freely receive all He has in His hand. 

 In summation, Receiving Righteousness transforms our self image and our interaction and fellowship with God our Father. Our prayer life is infused with refreshing and joyful exuberance. Prayer isn't a chore or task. Prayer becomes something we look forward to and no longer dread. Our prayers become bolder and we see the enemy flee as we, His children, take our rightful place in Christ. Come and sit at the King's table, there is a seat waiting for you, the Righteous. 


Image by Daniel Reche from Pixabay 

Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Receiving Righteousness: Walking by sight?

For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. 2 Corinthians 5:21 KJV

For if by the offense of the one, death reigned through the one, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.
Romans 5:17 NASB

Receiving of the Gift of Righteousness. We've been in an extended study of God's great Gift of Righteousness. We are examining the vital importance of not just knowing once you believe you are the Righteous, but also of actually receiving of this Gift of Righteousness in all areas of your life. 

 Righteousness received coupled with God's abundant Grace causes us to reign as kings in this life. When we receive of the Gift of Righteousness relationships are empowered to prosper and succeed. Healing and wholeness become more and more real to us and it frees us to receive apart from our works and performance.

 Today, I want to continue examining this great Gift of Righteousness and the benefits of actively receiving of it. We know who the Righteous are. Those who have trusted in Christ alone, receiving His new life and forever forgiveness. Let's look again at what Righteousness means.

 Righteousness is God's gift of no condemnation. Righteousness is that gift whereby we can stand before God without any sense of condemnation, guilt, shame, insecurity, or inferiority. Righteousness is that gift where we who believed are in perpetual right standing with God. Righteousness is that gift that grants us perfect acceptance and approval with our Heavenly Father. Righteousness is that blessing David spoke of, the person who God no longer imputes sin or uncleanness. This is the Gift of Righteousness.

 In our last two studies, we focused on the truth that when we need healing or any answer from God we need not look at ourselves. That is focusing on how many good deeds we have done. How much we prayed or gave or volunteered. No, we don't look to our goodness to receive from God but rather we focus on His Goodness alone and freely receive.

 That is amazingly good news to the weary ones who have tried to earn the blessing and Goodness of God. This frees us from trying to deserve anything from God's hands. All that the Finished Work procured and paid for is only received by Grace through Faith, not any works on our part. That said, what about the times when we sin and walk out of love?

 Some ministers may even agree that we can't "do" anything to deserve the blessing and Goodness and favor of God. However, even fewer would dare suggest that our sins would not hinder us from receiving answered prayers or blessings. Most ministries and churches agree and affirm that sins will hinder your prayer life. They will cite passages like this.

Your wickedness has deprived you of these wonderful blessings. Your sin has robbed you of all these good things. Jeremiah 5:25 NLT

So the question I simply want to ask is when it comes to answered prayer or receiving anything from God what are you looking at? Are you looking at your sins and shortcomings? Are you looking at your foul-ups? Or are you beholding Him? Are you seeing who He has made you now? Focusing on your failure or His forgiveness?

 Remember this vital truth, the wages of sin is not unanswered prayer or God withholding from you. The wages of sin is death. It was just one sin that plunged mankind into the fall and brought the curse upon this Earth. That one sin caused God to send His only Son for us all. 

 When we use Old Covenant formats for prayer requests and trying to receive anything from God we are walking by sight and not Faith. We are Righteous by Faith, not our doing. We can't undo what only Christ could do. 

We can have bold Faith even when we fail

 As Paul was accused of saying do evil that good may come, I am of course not saying let's sin even more knowing God will still answer our prayers. Sin has consequences in this life. Sin can also hurt others besides the one committing the act. Think how shattered and emotionally wounded the man or woman whose spouse committed adultery is. We aren't encouraging sin, but are magnifying this great Gift of God's Righteousness.

 Here is the too good to be true but true Good News of the Gospel. The wages of sin is death. God's gift is eternal life through Jesus. Christ paid the price for all sin. Jesus is the once for all sacrifice for sins. Jesus has forgiven our sins, past present, and future. All of our sins, even the ones we have yet to commit are already forgiven. 

14 who bought our freedom with his blood and forgave us all our sins Colossians 1:14 TLB

13 You were dead because of your sins and because your sinful nature was not yet cut away. Then God made you alive with Christ, for he forgave all our sins. Colossians 2:13 NLT

1 John 2:12 is just as clear. As the literal Greek renders, we are forgiven of all our sins on account of His name. If God's Word says we are forgiven of all our sins, and Jesus shed blood was the price paid for our forgiveness, then we are forgiven of all of our sins forever.

 Here is another truth to look at concerning sin.

then He adds, “Their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.” Hebrews 10:17 NKJV

 Not only are we forgiven of all our sins, but here, the writer of Hebrews (who I believe was Paul), referencing the Finished Work of the Cross declares that God will never remember our sins again. He will never remember our sins? What about when we sin continually? He said I will remember your sins no more. What about if I sin the same sin repeatedly? He said I will remember your sins no more.

 God said He will remember our sins no more. He didn't add an addendum or a clause that states I won't remember your sins except for the times in which you pray. If He has declared that our sins will not be remembered by Him, then how can our sins hinder our receiving from God? The Father answers prayer, blesses us, bestows favor upon us because He is Good not because we are. We can freely receive because we have been made the Righteousness of God in Christ. 

 Now we can't ignore all these passages just because they remove the harsh taskmaster image of God that so many believers have when it comes to their sin. We are seeing a pattern here in the New Covenant. He has forgiven us of all our sins. He has declared He will remember our sins no more. I think God is trying to tell us something.

 Let me add one more passage to finalize what we should be focusing on when we pray or have a need that must be supplied. Look at the amazing Good News Paul proclaimed in Romans 4. This is the happiness of those who are declared Righteous without working for it. This is the benefit of receiving of this Gift of Righteousness.

just as David also describes the blessedness of the man to whom God imputes righteousness apart from works: “Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven And whose sins are covered;  Blessed is the man to whom the Lord shall not impute sin. Romans 4:6-8 NKJV

 Here is the complete New Covenant view of Righteousness and our sins. God has forgiven us of all our sins, past and present and future. God because of the Cross declared He will remember our sins and iniquities no more. The Holy Spirit through Paul reveals a powerful benefit of Righteousness. That God is no longer imputing our sins to us. God has already imputed our sins on the body of Jesus on that cursed tree. God is not requiring us to also pay for our sins when Jesus paid the final price. 

What is the conclusion then? God has forgiven us forever. He has declared He will no longer remember our sins. This great Gift of Righteousness includes the too good to be true, but true great benefit of God no longer imputing our sins to our account. 

With this understanding how can anyone now declare that our sins can hinder us from receiving anything from God? Again God said He would no longer remember our sins. He didn't say I will only recall them when you pray and ask me for a blessing and you will receive that blessing in correlation to how much sin is active in your life at that moment. Thanks be to God, we are Righteous, forgiven, our sins never to be recalled and never to be imputed to our accounts again. 

 So what are you looking at in prayer? Your sins and shortcomings? Your mistakes? Your foul-ups and failures? Or are you walking by Faith and seeing your Righteousness alone? 

 In summation, when you believe you are the Righteousness of God in Christ. Your sins are forever forgiven. Your sins will never be remembered by God. Because of the Finished Work, your sins will never again be inventoryied and counted to your account. With this over-the-top goodness, you can have absolute boldness in prayer. You can come to God without shame or guilt and stand in Faith believing for whatever God has promised and provided in the Word and the Finished Work. Dare to take your place as a Righteous, accepted child of the King.  


.Image by Clker-Free-Vector-Images from Pixabay 

Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Receiving Righteousness: Freely received or Earned and Achieved?

For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. 2 Corinthians 5:21 KJV

For if by the offense of the one, death reigned through the one, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.
Romans 5:17 NASB

We have been in an extended study of Righteousness. We are focusing extensively on receiving of the Gift of Righteousness. It is not enough to know you have been made Righteous we must also receive of that gift in every area of our lives to see the full benefits.

 We have seen how Righteousness blesses and strengthens relationships, how Righteousness covers our faults and failures. We have seen the healing power in God's gift of Righteousness.

 Today, it seems good to examine a major truth we touched on in our last study. When it comes to healing or any other promise, often people tend to focus on their works, their doings and not on Jesus' perfect work and once-for-all-time sacrifice. They aren't seeing the finality of the Cross, but merely the beginning of the work. They see the Cross as the downpayment and their actions, performance, and efforts as the continued payments needed to appropriate all God has for them.
 
 The Cross is a Finished Work. It is final, once for all time. Jesus said it is finished, not, to be continued. The finality of the Cross is what the writer of Hebrews rejoiced over. With Christ's once for all sacrifice there can be no other sacrifice offered. Therefore our works, our performance, our attempts to earn or achieve the blessing, are unaccepted currency.

  So to understand the finality of the Cross, we must first ask the most important question in the universe next to the question of who do you say Jesus is. What must I do to be saved? This seems so basic, so elementary yet it is the foundation of our entire relationship with God. 

 Let's allow Paul to answer this question.

He then led them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” They said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, and you and your household will be saved.” Acts 16:30-31 MEV

 What must we do to be saved? Believe. We simply must believe. Any response other than only believe is in serious error and opens the door to all types of burdensome toil in relating to God. 

 There are those who hold to the idea that only believing makes the Gospel too easy. That believing is not enough. You have to promise God you will quit being bad and will start being good. You have to promise God you will give up all your bad habits right away. If you don't then you really aren't saved.

 If salvation must be earned in some way shape or form then all the promises of God must be received in the same manner. What must we do to be saved? Believe. Paul said to believe. Paul didn't say believe but also stop smoking, stop gambling, stop your cussing. Behavior change happens from the inside out, not by our outward efforts and works.

 Still, some acknowledge salvation is by Faith alone but put stipulations and clauses on receiving all the other promises of God. They will quickly agree we are saved by believing in Jesus but healing or provision? Better earn it, better get busy achieving it, activate the promise by your actions, your doing, your efforts.

 They will use phrases like you need to position yourself to receive it. Answered prayer, God's provision, healing, favor, blessing? You have to live exemplary lives, free from all sin, no strife or unforgiveness allowed, and then and only then will you possibly receive. Salvation is freely received by believing but everything else is on a wage and earning system?

 If salvation is only received by Grace through Faith then so are all the other promises and provision of God. We aren't Righteous by works or any other thing we have done. We are Righteous by what Christ has done. In the same manner, we are only healed, prospered, blessed, favored, and protected by what Christ has done not by what we have done.

 Look at provision. Paul declared a powerful truth in 2 Corinthians 8. he revealed the Grace of Jesus who through His poverty we might be increased. Christ bore the curse of poverty on the Cross. So what brings the increase? Our doing or was it Jesus' Grace and His becoming poor so we could be blessed?

 Listen, I am not suggesting all believers are promised that they will be millionaires but I am sharing what Jesus provided on the Cross. How could imperfect humanity dare ask a thrice Holy God to provide for their needs? It's because of Jesus' work. The Cross made it possible to receive provision and blessing in this life.

 The Cross provided the wholeness we all need. The Finished Work provided salvation, Righteousness, healing, provision, deliverance, protection, and direct access to the Father. It is Jesus' work that has achieved this not our works. It's by His stripes we are healed, not our efforts. It's by His becoming poor that we have divine provision, not any action on our part. 

 On that Cross, Jesus redeemed us from the curse of the Law. Christ's perfect work of redemption perfectly purchased our complete wholeness. We are redeemed through His work. So if the work of the Cross is only appropriated by simply believing then why add stipulations to receive the other aspects of redemption, that is, healing, protection, or provision? 

 In summation, the work of the Cross is only realized and received by Grace through Faith. Therefore, your healing, your provision, your protection, your favor, your wholeness is received by simply believing. 

Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, and cast out demons. Freely you have received, freely give. Matthew 8:10 MEV

 Freely we have received. That word freely Jesus uses here is the Greek word meaning undeserved. We have received because of Jesus' goodness not our own. So in times of need, look not at your performance, your efforts or achievements, or even your giving. Look only at Jesus' perfect work, put your whole trust and Faith in that alone and freely receive all He has freely provided. 

Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Monday, May 10, 2021

Receiving Righteousness: Divine Healing and Wholeness

 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. 2 Corinthians 5:21 KJV

For if by the offense of the one, death reigned through the one, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.
Romans 5:17 NASB

We've been in an extended study of Righteousness. We've seen what Righteousness is, right standing with God. We've seen who the Righteous are, those who trust in Him alone, and now we are focusing on the necessity to receive of this gift of Righteousness in every area of our lives and our walk with God.

 We have seen how Righteousness received positively affects and influences our relationships. We have seen how Righteousness received is the cure for guilt and shame when we fail. Today, we want to examine the healing power received in the gift of Righteousness. 

 When it comes to healing and wholeness, the Body of Christ as a whole seems to struggle knowing if healing is God's will. Let's look at Jesus' attitude about sickness and disease for a Bible response. Look at Mark 1. Here we see Jesus' willingness to cleanse and make whole. Why would He withhold from you if the motivation to heal was because of His great compassion?

 Look at Matthew's gospel to see Jesus' idea of ministry. There is not a single person Jesus turned away. There is not a single person we ever see Jesus telling that "this disease or virus or sickness is there to build your character, to evangelize, for others will see how happy you suffer and die, or this is for God's glory." He simply healed all who came to Him.

Surely our sicknesses he hath borne, And our pains -- he hath carried them, And we -- we have esteemed him plagued, Smitten of God, and afflicted. And he is pierced for our transgressions, Bruised for our iniquities, The chastisement of our peace [is] on him, And by his bruise there is healing to us. Isaiah 53:4-5 YLT 

 God sent His Son on our behalf. It was Jesus' perfect work on the Cross that perfectly procured and purchased our healing and wholeness. However when it comes to receiving we muddy the waters so to speak, trying to earn or deserve a touch of healing. We feel we must earn or be worthy enough to receive His healing. 
 
We look within ourselves to deem whether or not we qualify for wholeness. We look at our diet, our exercise, or lack thereof as a plus or a minus. Instead of looking to the Word, the Cross, and Jesus' perfect work we look inwardly to ensure we've completed enough spiritual disciplines. Or we look outwardly onto our actions, behavior or choices. 

So often our focus is not on what Jesus has already done but on what we are doing. Or we look at what we aren't doing, and not what Jesus has done for us. Our perspective shifts from the finality of the Cross, Jesus' once for all perfect sacrifice onto our own performance, our achievements, or onto actions we feel we aren't doing enough of. Jesus' Finished Work was enough, we can't add to it or take away from it by our doing or lack of doing. 

 We can't undo what only Christ, God's Grace, and His shed blood could attain. Look at the perfect beautiful work of that Cross. Jesus poured out all He has for all that we were not, never could attain to, and never could achieve. He became something He never was so we could become something we've never been.

 This is the beauty of this simple Good News Gospel of Grace. God created man for the purpose of family and fellowship but man chose rebellion and self. All mankind since have been born separated spiritually, in need of a Savior. God became a man, paid the price, shedding His sinless spotless perfect blood paying the debt of all mankind. Now whosoever receives this free gift of eternal life, trusting in Christ alone receives total forgiveness of all their sins and the gift of perfect righteousness; right standing, acceptance, and approval with God permanently.

 When we receive of the gift of Righteousness, we move away from trying to earn or qualify for what Christ has accomplished and provided. We don't look at our achievements we look upon the Finished Work and trust in, cling to and receive what Jesus bled and died and rose again for us to possess. Righteousness says I receive because of what Jesus did not what I do or don't do. 

 In Genesis 20 we see the first mention of divine healing. Traditionally some people equate healing with sin or wrongdoing, as if sickness is mostly the byproduct of personal sin. Certainly, when sin entered the World, sickness, disease and death followed. 

 But is that what we are to understand about healing in it’s first mention? No! Abraham offered prayers for healing and he is the one who had lied, failed to trust God, and put his needs above his wife's by giving her away. Yet, God answered Abraham’s prayer for healing for Abimelech. The first mention of healing is revealing the goodness and faithfulness of God. That is it was His goodness that provided the healing not Abraham’s. God answered the prayer for healing because of Covenant, because of His mercy and loving kindness. He brought forth healing because He is good not because Abraham was.


 how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him. Acts 10:38 MEV


 God is a Good Father. God anointed Jesus, the Son with the Spirit and He went about Israel healing all. This passage doesn't state that Jesus healed only the deserving. Only those who had their spiritual disciplines perfected. Only those whose good outweighed their bad. 


 This passage doesn't state but Jesus refused to heal all those whose sin caused the affliction in the first place. Or He refused to heal those who had not walked in love and forgiveness. It didn't state Jesus reserved healing for only the most deserving. 


 Because of the gift of Righteousness we can receive healing and wholeness apart from our performance or behavior. We can walk in His healing power apart from our ability to always forgive others quickly. We can freely receive because the price was freely paid by our perfect Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.


 Certainly, walking in love and being quick to forgive is a wonderful fruit of our new nature. Of course, not living in sin is a great witness to those around us and brings a joy to our heart because we are living out of our new nature. Yet these fruits aren't the root of how and why we receive healing or any promise. We receive because the gift of Righteousness has made us accepted and approved of God and the shed blood made us worthy to receive.


 In summation, we can receive healing and wholeness because of Jesus' perfect work and never our own attempts to merit or earn anything from God. Let me also say, living in a fractured and fallen world, no one has all the answers as to why some didn't receive their healing. Why some died prematurely. Why some prayed and their loved one passed.


 Knowing God through Jesus and His perfect Word though we can trust and know that God is always good and never the author or "sender" of sickness, disease or disaster. That there is nothing that can ever disqualify us from receiving all God has purchased for us at Calvary. That God is no respecter of persons, that Faith moves mountain and all believers have Faith, and we can speak to that mountain of sickness and disease and command it to move. Jesus' perfect work of redemption, His shed blood and God's gift of Righteousness made us worthy to receive all He has purchased and provided. 


Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay 

Monday, May 3, 2021

Receiving Righteousness: what about our failures?

For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. 2 Corinthians 5:21 KJV

For if by the offense of the one, death reigned through the one, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.
Romans 5:17 NASB

We have begun a new series studying Righteousness. We have seen what Righteousness is, right standing with God. We have seen who the Righteous are, those who have trusted in Christ alone. Now we are examining the importance of actually receiving of the gift of Righteousness.

 We have seen the great importance and benefit of receiving of the gift of Righteousness. For instance, receiving a brand new car is great, but profits you little if you never actually drive it. So it is with Righteousness. 

 We have seen how Righteousness received positively affects our relationships. We will continue looking at the various aspects of the Christian life that are more successful when we receive of this great gift. Today, though it seemed good to pause and address a question that many have concerning Grace and Righteousness. 

 Maybe this is new to you, this concept of Grace and Righteousness. Maybe you have heard of Righteousness but only in a religious traditional setting. Or maybe you heard of Grace but it wasn't taught well and left you with more questions than answers.

 We are the Righteousness of God in Christ. We have received the gift of perfect and complete right standing with God. We have received the gift that enables us to come before God always welcomed, always approved, and always accepted. We have received the gift that allows us to stand before God without any sense of guilt, shame, condemnation, insecurity, or inferiority. 

 Righteousness and all it encompasses is a gift. It is not a work we achieved. It is not a result of measuring up based on our good deeds outweighing our bad. It is not acquired by our performance or behavior or conduct. There are no levels of Righteousness. Either you're Righteous or you're not. Righteousness is a gift we receive not anything achieved.

 Knowing who you are, Righteous, how it is received, it is a gift and can't ever be earned, will completely answer the big question. Am I still Righteous even when I sin or fail? What about sin? What about when we fail? 

 Let me state this loud and clear. Your sin, your failures, your unrighteous deeds cannot ever undo your Righteousness in Christ. Your behavior, your conduct, your actions never made you Righteous, therefore, your behavior, conduct, or actions can never make you unrighteous.

 This is the plain truth of the Gospel. We could never achieve right standing with God by any action or work on our part. Why then do we think after we have received Righteousness we can somehow undo it now by our actions or behavior? 

 Answered plainly. Are we still Righteous when we sin or fail? The answer is yes. Righteousness is a gift. God isn't in the business of giving gifts and then taking them back. Righteousness is an irrevocable gift. 

For the gifts and calling of God are irrevocable. Romans 11:28 MEV

 Some may claim I am promoting a "license to sin." I get somewhat tired of that phrase. What even is a license to sin? All sin has consequences. Now I am not speaking of God punishing us or the do good and get good or do bad and get bad Law mentality. 

 All sin has some form of consequence. For something to be a license it would mean there is no harm, no-fault, no consequence to that action. A commercial driver's license or a pilot's license means one has demonstrated the necessary skills and know how to operate those vehicles or aircraft without any adverse reaction. 

 All sin has consequences, so to claim anyone can preach in such a way giving someone else the "license" to sin is absurd. Sin is birthed from unrenewed desire, often coupled with the temptation of the enemy. In some instances, sin is birthed by believing the lie that there is something better outside of Christ.

 Sin's consequences can be greatly measured or only seen and experienced by the offender. The one stealing may find themselves in a jail cell. The adulterer potentially loses their family through divorce, but certainly loses respect and trust in those around them. Still, most consequences seen from sin are the lack of confidence before God, and corrupting thoughts it produces.

Because there are always consequences for sin, the concept of a license to sin then is absurd. When speaking of sin, most Christians really are only speaking of certain kinds of sin. Only certain kinds of behavior.

 Holiness is basically defined then by one who isn't committing adultery, having sex outside of marriage, watching pornography, isn't drinking alcohol, isn't using tobacco, doesn't watch R-rated movies, and never listens to secular music, and doesn't use profanity. These are basically the biggies. These are the real obvious sins.

 Truth is, I have seen believers who meet these criteria. Yet they are unkind to others. They are impatient in public. They are envious of others. They gossip. They hold grudges. These are sinful deeds as well, just the ones not preached about much.

 When we look at God's definition of sin and not man's we all realize we need a Savior. We all realize we need someone who could mediate between us and God. We realize we don't always have it all together. 

 It's humbling, and that's where Grace comes in. We acknowledge we can't overcome in our own strength or willpower. We need a perfect gift that keeps us in right standing even when we fail. That gift has been given, it is the gift of Righteousness. 
 
 In the great exchange, we received this great gift. Because of the triumphant work of the Cross, no believer needs to bear their sins and guilt and shame. Think of it, if all the guilt of our sins was on Christ it has no place on us. He was condemn in our place, therefore we never need feel condemned. He took our shame, therefore shame is has no place on us or in our thinking. Christ took all the punishment for our sins, so therefore we need never fear reprisal or retribution coming to us for our sins.

 In summation, we are the Righteousness of God in Christ. It is who we are right now. Jesus won a complete victory. He arose triumphant defeating death, hell, the grave and the enemy. We who believe are forever forgiven, forever saved, and forever Righteous. Righteousness is an irrevocable gift. 


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