“All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.” 2 Timothy 3:16-17
In addition to the previous post, I just wanted to assure you all that we CAN be righteous even though we use the term loosely as if holiness is unattainable.
“For there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not.”
Now obviously we do not have the ability to achieve righteousness in and of ourselves, this is why Jesus had to fulfill the law.
“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
So now (through faith) we can receive the righteousness of Christ but we’d rather sit around and make excuses for our sinful appetites.
It’s like everyone’s favorite scripture is Romans 3:23— “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” but in context, all that means is for that reason God shows no partially. Anyone can receive this righteousness whether Jew or gentile (see Romans chapter 3). The real reason that no one is “righteous” is because we just don’t fear God.
“The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God.’ They are corrupt, and have done abominable iniquity; There is none who does good. God looks down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there are any who understand, who seek God. Every one of them has turned aside; They have together become corrupt; There is none who does good, No, not one.”
Psalm 53:1-3 (NKJV)
True believers (those who are born again of the spirit) obey God and become righteous as they conform to the image (or character) of Christ..
And quite frankly, if you are not righteous you are not of God.
” Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not. Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is. And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure. Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law. And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin. Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: whosoever sinneth hath not seen him, neither known him. Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous. He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil. Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God. In this the children of God are manifest, and the children of the devil: whosoever doeth not righteousness is not of God, neither he that loveth not his brother.”
1 John 3:1-10
You see, we like to think that people who pursue holiness are just being “legalistic” but the truth is that these are the ones who truly know God—they get it! Going to church every single week “repenting” for the same exact things is not going to cut it! And if you think that you’re “saved” just because you pray and know the scriptures, you’re deceived. And you’re the one being legalistic.
“For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 5:20
I encourage you to look up scriptures on holiness. You’d be surprised how being holy (or doing righteousness) isn’t just some idea, it’s actually a command. It’s always been (and will always be!) the standard for God’s people.
I don’t know who told this generation that being righteous was impossible???
It is possible to stop willfully sinning with integrity. It’s possible to fear the Lord and not partake in abominable things. It’s possible to deny yourself the luxuries of this life by humbling yourself and giving up all of your selfish ambitions and desires. YES, it is possible through Jesus Christ but it is NOT easy or popular so take heart!
“So flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.”
2 Timothy 2:22