CAN OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS SAVE US?
Daily we strive to do good deeds. In our minds we think our deeds are all we need to be counted righteous. Some parade themselves as infallible, they are quick to point out their good deeds. I have heard many say God will give them more reward for the good deed they have done, the truth is, we are more evil than good. If we apply the mathematical process of cancellation in division in weighing our good deeds and evil deeds, there is a certain large proportion of evil deeds left after each good is cancelled out by an evil deed. The more we try to prove how righteous we are the more we lose focus on what Christianity is all about.
There is no pastor, no bishop, no pope, no prophet, no one is more righteous than his sins are. Tell me you did more good than evil and I will point you out as the greatest liar. God is and will always be one without sin and that is final.
HOW THEN ARE WE JUSTIFIED? Now Christ comes into the picture. Every Christian knows humans carry a death penalty on their heads, this penalty came to our first parents and through them we inherited it. Romans 10:3 “ for they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves to the righteousness of God.”
From Eden in Genesis 4:4 God instituted a symbolic sacrifice for the remitting of sin. God planned to save every soul from the punishment of Death. But how can he succeed when we are constantly falling into sin(the wages of sin is death). Having this in mind we come to understand that for each lie told we are doomed, the question is “can the next good deed cancel the already said punishment?” maybe it can but the truth is we can’t keep track of all our sins, we sin many a times without even knowing we sinned. Even the righteous deeds we accomplish are many a times with flaws. Something was needed to be done and God did it, he chose to make the greatest sacrifice ever. The remission of sin needed one to take the punishment of sin on his shoulder alone. No man can do so since each of us commits sins every day of our lives. Someone without sin, someone more righteous must take on him the death penalty.
Christ took the punishment and his righteousness became ours. Then a question was asked, should we then continue in sin since there is already a provision for our survival? No! Christ said “if you love me keep my commandments.” What commandments? The ten commandments. I must tell you this; Christ knows it will be hard for us to keep these commandments without error, yet he wants us to try, he wants us to condition our mind and body towards keeping these commandments without erring. John said we must at each point of the day kneel in prayer for the forgiveness of our sins. Each earnest prayer brings forgiveness from God and we are immediately clothed in the righteousness of Christ, and not our own righteousness.
Romans 3:10 “it is written, there is none righteous, no, not one.” When we understand not even the pastor, bishop, priest or pope is free from sin, our own pride will fall and a new spring of awareness will flow within us. We will be forced to look towards Christ for newness of life. We will find the peace our hearts needs when we hide ourselves under his righteousness. There will be no more fear when we understand that we are living under a perfect life which is Christ. Romans 8:1 “there is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh but the Spirit.” These words are comforting, trusting in Christ and doing our best is all we need. We must not relax because Christ has done it all but must stand up and do good always. But when we fail we must remember it is not our righteousness that matters but the one whom we believe in, we must quickly go in prayer to God, once we utter the words ‘we are sorry for every sin we have committed’ and deep down we mean it “God will not see our sins but the righteousness of Christ which covers us.