Righteousness; What God Requires, He Also Provides…Romans

For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ for therein the righteousness of God is revealed…Romans 1:16

The book of Romans is unique among the epistles in that it isn’t polemic, that is it isn’t trying to refute any error. Romans is therefore  a clear rendering of the Gospel of salvation . Paul calls it the “Gospel of God” , and takes us from the bankruptcy of Jew and Gentile to the glorification of man and creation, all realised by the gospel.

Paul begins with the declaration that in the Gospel, “the Righteousness of God is revealed”. In order to appreciate and grow in the gospel, a thorough grounding in the teaching of Romans is necessary, and for that to happen, the meaning and use of the term “Righteousness” has to be defined. Biblically, there are several possible definitions;

Righteousness, dikiaosune – refers to uprightness of conduct, equity of character. It means to have all good qualities in perfection.

Righteousness- can also mean uprightness, rectitude,  conformity to God’s standards.

Righteousness- is also a status- Right-Standing- being “in the right”,”Right with” a law , authority or person in authority.

The Beginning of the Gospel in Romans is an emphasis on the bad news first. God is a Holy God and can only accept perfect Righteousness from man. There is a saying that illustrates this and is quite profound

“The Righteousness that He (God) requires , is the Righteousness that His Righteousness requires Him to Require.”

Furthermore we are warned of the coming day of Judgment, in which the standard will be absolute Righteousness and Truth. At the great accounting God will require perfect Righteousness of each person.

But after thy hardness and impenitent heart treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God;Who will render to every man according to his deeds…(Romans 2:5-6).

This is the bad news, that we are all on our way to a Judgment of our lives by a Holy God who can accept nothing less than absolute Righteousness from those whom He made in His Image. Eternal, happy Fellowship with Him requires total Righteousness and we have none to offer Him. We have not been morally upright, we have not conformed to God’s standards, by our sins we have forfeited the right to dwell in God’s universe. What are we going to do?

God himself offers to us the answer. Romans declares that it is Jesus,

…Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; Romans 3:25

Jesus is the offering God made unto Himself. God has “set him forth” as the ‘satisfaction ‘ offering, His life offered to God for us satisfies the requirements of the Righteous nature of God, the broken law of God, the offended Holiness of God. By the resurrection God testified that He is satisfied in the offering of Jesus.

In short, here is the Gospel ; A Righteous God, has made a righteous way to cleanse and renew unrighteous sinners, by exchange. In God’s plan, Jesus assumed our unrighteousness before God, and was judged with our judgment, so that we could be given his righteousness as a gift. As Paul put it,

For He hath made Him who knew no sin, to be sin for us, that we might be made the Righteousness of God in Him.(2 Cor 5:21) 

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8 Responses to Righteousness; What God Requires, He Also Provides…Romans

  1. mauianneme says:

    Love your blog, pastor randles. But i need you to explain a little better your sentence that God testified He is satisfied in Christ’s offering by His resurrection. How did resurrection prove it? I almost understand it but not quite. Thank you so much. AnneSent via the Samsung Galaxy S7, an AT&T 4G LTE smartphone

    • billrandles says:

      The last passage in Romans 4 tells us that Christ was raised because of our justification. His resurrection was based upon the satisfaction of God the Father that sin had been answered for.

  2. This is the Good News!

  3. Do you think Zechariah 3 is a picture Jesus and this exchange?
    “Then he showed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord, and Satan standing at his right side to accuse him. 2 The Lord said to Satan, “The Lord rebuke you, Satan! The Lord, who has chosen Jerusalem, rebuke you! Is not this man a burning stick snatched from the fire?”

    3 Now Joshua was dressed in filthy clothes as he stood before the angel. 4 The angel said to those who were standing before him, “Take off his filthy clothes.”

    Then he said to Joshua, “See, I have taken away your sin, and I will put fine garments on you.”

    5 Then I said, “Put a clean turban on his head.” So they put a clean turban on his head and clothed him, while the angel of the Lord stood by.

    6 The angel of the Lord gave this charge to Joshua: 7 “This is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘If you will walk in obedience to me and keep my requirements, then you will govern my house and have charge of my courts, and I will give you a place among these standing here.

    8 “‘Listen, High Priest Joshua, you and your associates seated before you, who are men symbolic of things to come: I am going to bring my servant, the Branch. 9 See, the stone I have set in front of Joshua! There are seven eyes[b] on that one stone, and I will engrave an inscription on it,’ says the Lord Almighty, ‘and I will remove the sin of this land in a single day.

    10 “‘In that day each of you will invite your neighbor to sit under your vine and fig tree,’ declares the Lord Almighty.”

      • Jesus was a “burning stick snatched from the fire” because he was actually righteous. He was doomed, but the heavenly court recognized that Jesus was innocent and stopped the consequence of sin. (The wages of sin is death.) This is why the resurrection is evidence that this transaction occurred. This picture of Christ in Zechariah amazes me because it foretells the entire purpose of Christ’s death and resurrection. And Jesus DID remove the sin of the land in a single day. So wonderful.

  4. Hope you and your congregation are safe Pastor Bill! My husband and I are praying for you and Cedar Rapids.

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