Why should we care what God declares about righteousness? Friend, God is the supreme authority of the universe. Everyone will give an account to this God.
Revelation 20:12, “And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened...” This God says in I Corinthians 6:9, “Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God?”
So it is important to understand what God says about righteousness. Our eternal standing before God depends on it. There are at least three different kinds of righteousness dealt with in the Bible Scriptures.
Romans 3:10, "As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one." I John 5:17, "All unrighteousness is sin..." II Thessalonians 2:12, "That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness." I Corinthians 6:9,
“Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived..."
Mankind is unrighteous in the eyes of God. Romans 3:23, "For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God."
Sin is rebellion against God. Sin is breaking the commandments of God. Sin is falling short of what God demands. God says, "All have sinned and come short of the glory of God..." Thus, man is guilty and unrighteous before God.
"...All our righteousnesses are as filthy rags..." Isaiah 64:6. The best works man can offer are filthy and unacceptable to God.
Since the garden of Eden humans have tried, by the works of their hands, to replace what was lost when man sinned against God.
Self-righteous works will never be accepted by God. Galatians 2:16, "Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law..." Galatians 3:10, "For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed [is] every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them."
Religions of the world are striving to do something that will impress God.
But all the penitence, ceremonies or rites will never be good enough to be accepted by a thrice Holy God.
Galatians 2:16, "Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have belied in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified."
Unrighteousness is unacceptable and self-righteousness equally appalling to God. How can a person be just with God? How can one have God's righteousness?
God's righteousness must be imputed. "Impute" means "to put to the account of another". God will give a person his righteousness only through the merits of His Son, Jesus Christ.
"In whom we have redemption through His (Jesus Christ) blood, even the forgiveness of sins;" Colossians 1:14. Romans 4:22,24 "...it was imputed to him for righteousness...if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead." v25 "...who was delivered for our offenses, and was raised again for our justification."
When a sinner has a true godly sorrow for sin, with a repentant attitude toward God, a total abandonment of self-righteous works and a faith that lays hold on Jesus Christ and him crucified, he then becomes a candidate for salvation. This is God's good news!
We can be righteous before God by faith in Jesus Christ who died for our sins.
Friend, God's goodness has allowed this small tract to reach your hands. Will you prepare to meet God or will you put if off until it's too late? Turn from your sin and believe on the Lord Jesus Christ today! Luke 13:3 stated, "I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish."
"What Does God Say About Righteousness?" is a gospel tract by Evangelist Randy Bane. Used on GospelFuel.com by permission.