What is Righteousness:
meaning: 'Just; 'Cornelius is a Just man' (righteous) Acts10:22
Defined: integrity, virtue, purity, rightness, correct thinking, right acting, simply: Doing what is Right!
keep hearing Pundits claim that the Convert is:
Clothed in His Righteousness, Made Righteous, imputed Righteous, He is our Righteousness, There are none Righteous, all our Righteousness is filthy rags, Christ is imputed as Righteousness, His Righteousness is transferred to you by faith making you righteous although you remain unrighteous
Problem is I can't find any of these things ANYWHERE in Scripture! First of all NO WHERE does it say that Christ is imputed to you as Righteousness, it does say FAITH is accounted / reckoned as Righteousness. The Proclamation in Jer23;6 ‘The Lord our Righteousness, is speaking of the Righteous branch raised up from the house of David through which the faithful will be Saved; not anything transferred to the believer from Christ.
does the Scripture say?
“Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for
But to him who does not work but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is accounted for righteousness, just as David also describes the blessedness of the man to whom God imputes righteousness apart from works: Rom4:5-6
For we say that faith was accounted to Abraham for righteousness. Rom4:9
And therefore “it was accounted to him for righteousness. Rom4:22
“believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness Gal3:6
And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness Js2:23
'accounted, reckoned, imputed, in the Key Passages above, from this they build
the fallacy that Righteousness is transferred from Christ to the believer at
To Reason, Suppose, count, deem, Judge. It has Nothing to do with a Transaction or anything Transferred or deposited into your account. Its also used as: Suppose and Think, examples:
He was reckoned or numbered among the transgressors, Mat15:28, Lk22:37
the great goddess Diana should be despised, Acts19:17 (transferred?!)
thinkest thou this old man, Rom2:3
We conclude that a man is Justified, Rom3:28
I reckon that the present sufferings, Rom8:18
to him that esteems anything to be unclean, Rom14:14
Love thinks no evil, 1Cor13:11
Translated 'think in: 2Cor10:2, 7, 2Cor10:11, 12:6, 'Suppose in 2Cor11:5, 1Pet5:15
I count not myself to have attained, Phil3:13
I pray it may not be laid to their charge, 2Tim4:16
Apply their reasoning of 'something transferred or deposited (imputed) to any of the passages sited above.
Imputed is a legal
term (in English) meaning to attribute or ascribe something to a person; as to
'impute them Just when they are unjust or as to having a considerable sum of
money deposited in their account that had nothing. It was transferred to
Theology from the Latin term:
has no such meaning in the Greek. It could simply be said that
'Abraham's faith was
considered by God to be Righteousness
(in other words his faith was weighed in the balance and found righteous,
Js2:22, 24) Just as David, who was considered Righteous by his faith, Rom4:5-6,
that did not attempt to be Reconciled (returned to favor from his awful sins) by
Sacrifices and offerings: 'Works, but by Faithfully Coming Clean
in Repentance and emptying himself of all guile and deceit. That's why he could
'Blessed is the man in who's heart there is no guile' Psalm32:1
God can 'Justify the ungodly and accept their faith as Righteousness, because in Scripture Faith is shown to be MUCH MORE than a mental accent acceptance of facts, Rather its a heart-felt Faithfulness that doeth what is Right!
You see then that a man is justified by what he DOES, and not by faith only! Js2:24
Scripture Righteousness is what you DO, Not what you Receive:
He who Does what is Right is Righteous, 1John3:7, 10
Able attained Witness that his Deeds were Righteous, Heb11:4
Anyone who Does what is Right is Righteous as He is Righteous, 1Jh2:29
Many of the terms used to imply that Righteousness is something that must be transferred to the believer can be ascribed to the misuse of terminology particularly in the KJV, example:
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. 2Cor5:21
This passage was mutilated by the translators for the two fold purpose of supporting the notion that Christ became sin on the Cross so believers could be 'made righteous in Him. They did this by ADDING the terms: 'hath made him to be', and 'we might be made', seemingly supporting the Doctrine of Christ becoming sin in man's place and His Righteousness being magically transferred in the process. And as adding the word 'Imputed' to other passages, the delusion is complete and people who have bought into it are not likely to be easily persuaded otherwise by simply examining the Greek words and finding that it says no such thing.
The 'he hath
made' phrase is expanded from the Greek Poieo; meaning to: bear,
shoot forth, cause, produce
'him to be sin' is simply the Greek word for Sin, 'Hamarita', why not 'sin offering' as its translated many times in OT
'might be made the' is the single Greek word ginomai, which means 'Become, not made in the sense of imparted
So properly stated
(without some magical transfer theology infused) it could simply say:
'For He was made a Sin Offering on our behalf, who knew no sin, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him', Its also important to note 'Become is in the Subjunctive mood, meaning something that may or may not occur depending on circumstances. In the Context of Verses 20-21, it is speaking to those YET to be Reconciled through Repentance and faith proven by deeds. So the term: 'We are Made Righteous in Him', in the sense of it being something transferred to us by God when we believe in Jesus, is NOT Scriptural. Rather it is Christ who has 'become the example set forth to us as the model of all things pertaining to life and godliness:
But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made (Become, ginomai) unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord. 1Cor1:30-31
that He is doing it 'for us' or transferring it to us, but leading us into it!
That's why Scripture speaks of Righteousness as something we DO, not
something DONE for us or in our place. As the following:
For I say to you, that unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. Matt5:20
Might serve Him without fear, In holiness and righteousness before Him all the days of our life. Lk1:75
The Righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith, Rom1:17
And do not present your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. Rom6:13
Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one’s slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness? And having been set free from sin, you became slaves of righteousness. Rom6:16, 18
that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. Rom8:4
for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. Rom14:17
and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness. Put on the breastplate of Righteousness, Eph4:24, 6:14
Bare the Fruits of Righteousness,
Phil1:11, Js3:18, Heb12:11, Exceeding Righteous, Seek Righteous, Mat5:20, 6:33
Follow Righteousness, 1Tim6:11, 2Tim2:22, Instruct them in Righteousness, 2Tim3:16,
Suffer for Righteousness, Matt5:10, 1Pet3:14, Preacher of Righteousness, 2Pet2:5
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. 1Jh3:7-8
ourselves were also once foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving various lusts
and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful and hating one another.
But when the
kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared,
not by works of
righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us,
through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit,
whom He poured out
on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior,
that having been justified by
His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life. Tit3:3-7
Man cannot have his past sins remitted by any 'Work of Righteousness presented to God, but he is fully ABLE to DO what is Right. He has not been rendered incapable of good deeds because he has sinned. Since the first act of faith is Obedience to the truth, Rom6:16, God can respond to our faithfulness in producing Deeds Worthy of repentance as a Right action acceptable unto Him. Because He Searches the heart and Tests the mind of every individual who comes to Him by faith, He can then accept their faith (if genuine, sincere and authentic) as the Righteousness required to Pronounce them JUST, as:
And they were both righteous before God, (speaking of Zacharias & Elizabeth) walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless. Lk1:6
Cornelius the centurion, a just man, and one that feareth God, and of good report among all the nation of the
Jews, Acts10;22 But in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him Acts10:35
This is why the Scripture says: 'The Just man shall live by his faithfulness to God', Hk2:4. He begins in a faithfulness that OBEYS God's Command to Come Clean of his sins, in this he is logizomai: reckoned, considered, deemed, and judged to be RIGHTEOUS! God accepts his faithful obedience; trustworthy devotion and heart-felt loyalty as bona fide evidence he has taken up his cross, counted the cost and Strived to enter through the Narrow Gate to Life. So to expand on the meanings of Faith and Deeds in the process of Justification I paraphrase the following:
Was not Abraham our father justified by his faithful deeds when he offered Isaac his son on the altar? Do you see that his faithfulness was working together with his deeds, and by these deeds his faith was made perfect? And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, Abraham believed God, and it was accounted (reckoned, considered, deemed, judged to be) to him for righteousness. And he was called the friend of God. You see then that a man is justified by his deeds done in faith, and not by faith (merely believing) only. Js2:21-24
Therefore I conclude that God HAS indeed 'Reconciled the world unto Himself in Christ and DOES 'Justify the ungodly by faith, BUT Not so they can be merely Pronounced Just and Righteous, Rather so that something Real and Genuine can occur within them that Purges away their past wrong doings and Cleanses them for Present Service, as Holy and Pure Saints Obedient workers unto God Producing the Fruits of Righteousness in their daily Walk.
And I heard, as it were, the voice of a great multitude, as the sound of many waters and as the sound of mighty thunderings, saying, 'Alleluia! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigns! Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready. And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints. Rev19:6-8
Further Passages that
testify of the Righteous:
By faith Abel offered to God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, through which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts; and through it he being dead still speaks Heb11:4
He who is unjust, let him be unjust still; he who is filthy, let him be filthy still; he who is righteous, let him be righteous] still; he who is holy, let him be holy still. Rev22:11
Judge me, O
according to my righteousness, And according to my integrity within me Ps7:8
The Lord rewarded me according to my righteousness; According to the cleanness of my hands He has recompensed me. Ps18:20. For the ways of the Lord are right; The righteous walk in them, But transgressors stumble in them. Hos14:9. He who walks uprightly, And works righteousness, And speaks the truth in his heart; Ps15:2 The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, And His ears are open to their cry. The face of the Lord is against those who do evil, To cut off the remembrance of them from the earth Ps34:15-16, I put on righteousness and it clothed me Job29:14
Righteousness is Simply DOING what is Right by faith, working by love and Purifying the heart of sin.
But it’s a very scary word to most professed Christians.
Answers to None Righteous, all our righteousness is filthy rags and sinless perfection, perfect as God:
Self-Righteousness, Rom10:3-4, is attempting to establish your own righteousness by adhering to Ritual, ordinances, religious activities or observance of days, new moons or Sabbaths, dress codes, rules, regulations, forms of godliness. Thinking that such things can Remit your past sins and cleanse you for present service.
Biblical Righteousness, 1Jh3:7, Is Doing as God Commands, in first Producing Deeds Worthy of Repentance and then Walking uprightly by faith working by love and keeping the heart Pure of sin.
Personal Righteousness makes Salvation dependent on our deeds and is adding to the Finished work of Christ.
And makes our
righteousness counted as Merit toward earning eternal life, in which nothing can
The Free Gift is the entire Package, forgiveness of ALL Sin + eternal life guaranteed, nothing more need done
Any mention of our Righteousness is Self-righteousness, because all ours is filthy rags
If man can be
Righteous (do what is right) he wouldn't need Christ and could be as Perfect as
God, Sinless and
Self-Justify. Therefore there has never been a Righteous person on earth
The Flaws in such
The Free Gift is Remission of Past Sins, through repentance and faith. Final Salvation IS DEPENDENT on our Deeds done in Faith, Good or Evil, John5:29, Rom2:7-8, Rev22:11-14, the Reward is Eternal Life!
The White Robes Washed in the Blood of the Lamb (in repentance) Become the Righteous DEEDS of the Saints!
Rev7:14, 19:8. None Righteous is speaking of those who deny God, Ps14:1-3, 53:1-3, Filthy rags, Isa64:6, are the wicked in need of repentance. If you DO WELL (righteousness by faith) will you not be accepted! Gen4:7, Our final Salvation is Conditional on our DOING WELL in Faith to the end.
What God has Declared
Righteous Cannot be Self-Righteous:
Able attained Witness that he was Righteous, Heb11:4, Zacharias & Elizabeth were said to be Righteous, Lk1:6,
Cornelius was a Just (righteous) man, Acts10:22, Noah, Daniel and Job were delivered by their own Righteousness, Ezk14:14, Enoch was Perfect in his generation, Gen5:24, The Psalmist declared his righteousness, and Jesus said He did not come to Cal the Righteous to repentance, Mk2:17, Lk5:32, Rejoice over One Sinner who repents over 99 Righteous persons who NEED no repentance Lk15:7. Faithfulness to God is DOING what is Right, accepted by God as Righteousness, Js2:22, 24, 1Jh3:7,
Some say they don't believe in Eternal Security, BUT will not make final Salvation dependent on Deeds and will then Suppress Righteousness, HOLD it as Self-righteousness and DENY that its Possible! Others will call every Righteous Saint in Bible a filthy Sinner in order to project the notion of NONE Righteous. Will always conclude:
'You want to present your own righteousness to God at the Judgment, good luck!' To which I respond:
'You want to present your Filthy rags to Him cloaked in a Magic Cover, good luck!'
Now this I say lest anyone should beguile you with enticing words. Col2:4. But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving / beguiling yourselves. Js1:22
Beguile, paralogizomai, is a unique word, meaning to: miscount, deceive by false reasoning, false reckoning. When they impute or reckon a person Righteous, who is in reality unrighteous, they are deceptively manipulating the use of words in order to create a premise that does not exist. It's interesting to note also that logizomai is a derivative of LOGO's, to reason, think, consider (as in the Word of God) thus in para-logizomai, (beguiling) reason is turned on its head and what is supposed as truth is actually a deadly lie.
By Mike D