#4 The Righteousness of God
Brother Chris Wilde shares with us on The Righteousness of God.
Scripture Reading: 1 John 1:9; 2:1; Rom. 1:16-17; 2 Cor. 5:21; 1 Pet. 3:18; Psa. 89:14; Rom. 14:17; 4:24-25; 5:18
I. The word righteous in 1 John 2:29 refers to the righteous God in 1 John 1:9 and to Jesus Christ the Righteous in 1 John 2:1:
A. The righteousness of God is what God is in His actions with respect to justice and righteousness—Rom. 1:17; 3:21-22; 10:3:
1. Righteousness is related to God’s actions and activities—Rev. 16:7; 19:2.
2. God is righteous in His ways—His governing principles by which He does things; righteousness is the nature of God’s acts—15:3; Psa. 103:7.
3. God is righteous in the blood of Jesus His Son, which has fulfilled God’s righteous requirements so that He may forgive us our sins—1 John 1:9.
B. In ascension Jesus Christ is the Righteous—2:1:
1. As the ascended One in the heavens, Christ is working and ministering righteously.
2. As our Representative, or Attorney, in the heavenly court, Christ is the righteous One—v. 1.
II. The righteousness of God is the procedure of God’s salvation judicially – vv. 16-17:
A. God cannot forgive sinful people without meeting the demands of His righteousness (Psa. 103:6-7); according to His righteousness, “the soul who sins, he shall die” (Ezek. 18:4), and “the wages of sin is death” (Rom. 6:23):
1. Christ died a vicarious death as the Substitute for sinners, a death that was legal according to God’s law and was recognized and approved by God according to the law – Isa. 53:5-6; 2 Cor. 5:21; Matt. 27:45-46.
2. Christ, the righteous One, was judged on behalf of us, the unrighteous, by the righteous God according to His righteousness so that Christ might remove the barrier of our sins and bring us to God, making us the righteousness of God in Him – 1 Pet. 3:18; 2 Cor. 5:21.
3. On the cross Jesus was made sin for us, condemned sin in the flesh, and by dying on our behalf fulfilled all of God’s righteousness; now for the sake of His righteousness, God must forgive us – v. 21; Rom. 8:3, 10; John 19:20.
B. Because God is bound by His righteousness to forgive us, righteousness is the power of God’s salvation and the unshakable foundation of our salvation – Rom. 1:16-17:
1. Our experience of Christ rests on the foundation of God’s righteousness, which is the solid, steadfast, and unshakable foundation of His throne (Psa. 89:14) and the base on which His kingdom is built (Rom. 14:17).
2. God has put Christ to death on our behalf, He has recognized the death of Christ as the full payment of our debt of sins, and the resurrected and ascended Christ sitting at the right hand of God is the “receipt” of this payment – 4:24-25.
3. Thus, whenever we claim the blood of Jesus and appeal to God’s righteousness, He has no choice except to forgive us – 1 John 1:9; Hymns, #1003.
C. Life is the goal of God’s salvation; thus justification is “of life”; through justification we have come up to the standard of God’s righteousness and correspond with it so that now He can impart His life into us – Rom. 5:18.