THE BIBLICAL ENLIGHTENMENT ON “RIGHTEOUSNESS”
There is a serious confusion among many Christians of today about the word “righteousness” so many interpretations and definition about righteousness in Christianity of today but the most popular one is this definition among the modern day gospel being circulated by the prosperity preachers or I should call them motivational speakers and well accepted by the new speeches Christians.
The modern day definition of righteousness today is what I call passive righteousness, this righteousness definition teaches that when you give your life to Jesus or when you just confess your sins and claim Jesus as your Lord and Savior, then you are covered by the righteousness of Jesus Christ, you become the righteousness of God through Jesus Christ. So it does not matter what you do after, you are covered by the righteousness of Jesus, even if you continue in sins, you are covered and the righteousness of Jesus is always there to cover you in your continuous sinful life. They say we are not saved by our works of righteousness and all our works of righteousness are like a dirty rag, so no need for work of righteousness after you are saved, just continue in your sin and keep confessing the righteousness of God.
This is the most deceptive and most popular doctrine of demons. You wonder why so Christians are living in total worldliness, many women who call themselves Christians dressing like harlots and yet they can speak in tongues, their men living in immoralities, dishonesty, corruption and sinful lifestyle and yet let them begin prayer, within few minutes they begin to blast in tongues. Sometimes you see some people with their lifestyles, their ungodly ways of living yet they can quote Bible and even preach. It is because they believe in the heresy of false righteousness.
The heresy of false righteousness teaches that all you need to do is to confess Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, begin to attend a church, be faithful to pay your tithes and offerings and no need to change your lifestyle, God’s righteousness always covers you. Even if you continue in unrighteousness. But I need to tell you that if you believe such thing, you are swimming in heresy for your eternal damnation. And I am here to warn you.
What is righteousness? If you don’t have the sound understanding, you will be confused and deceived. Because you need to know that those who are preaching this false righteousness are agents of devil in suites. Because Satan knows if he should come out to preach heresy to you, you will not be scared, you will run away from him so he chooses men and women with nice looking church auditoriums and load them with different false teaching and doctrines to take as many people to hell fire.
The meaning of righteousness is simple good works. Righteousness by the word of God is good works. So let me explain to you:
Salvation through Jesus Christ does not come by our good works, meaning we are not saved because we are good, we have all sinned and come short of God’s glory. We are born bad and bred bad. Before God, no one is good. The Bible says, “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8.
I want you to take note of that Bible statement, “while we were still sinners” Two things you need to take note here: 1, we were sinners, bad people when Jesus came to save us” 2, when Jesus saves you from bad life, that is, from sins, you don’t continue sin again, you don’t remain a sinner. That is the reason the Bible says, “while we WERE still sinners” so it is a past tense, we were sinners before we met Jesus, and we don’t remain sinners, we don’t remain in bad works, ungodly works after we are saved in Christ.
For you to be free from false teaching on righteousness, for you to have sound understanding of the word of God of righteousness, you need to take note of these 2 things: We are saved by what? And we are saved for what?
WE ARE SAVED BY WHAT?
We are not saved by our own works of righteousness but we are saved by GRACE in Christ through FAITH. The Bible says in Ephesians 2:8,9, “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, 9 not of works, lest anyone should boast.”
We are saved by grace, free gift of God and not by our own works of righteousness. This is the gospel. Gospel means good news of God’s salvation free of charge.
WE ARE SAVED FOR WHAT?
This is the problem of many Christians of today. They only know why which means they were saved but they don’t know more than that. And that is half knowledge, and you need to know that half truth or half knowledge leads to greater heresy. Let me tell you, if you know by which means you were saved but you don’t know for what purpose you were saved, you are so biblically ignorant and you will misuse the salvation. The prosperity preachers, the modern gospel preachers are so biblically ignorant that they only know “by which” but they don’t know “for which”
Now, righteousness, as I said means good works and we are not saved by our good works but we are saved for good works. “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for GOOD WORKS, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:10. We are created in Christ, we are saved in Christ for good works, not for ungodly or lawless works.
Let’s quickly go through these Bible verses:
We are not saved by the works of righteousness which we have done:
“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,” Titus 3:5.
But we are saved for works of righteousness in Christ by His grace:
“Little children, let no one deceive you. He who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous. He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has sinned from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil.” 1 John 3:7,8.
Those preachers are churches that teach that when you saved, you are covered by Jesus’ righteousness and your righteous living does not matter are misguided end time anti-Bible teachers, they are agents of Satan. Let no one deceive you with permissive teachings, we are not saved by our works of righteousness but not for unrighteous living. When you are genuinely saved, you start to live righteous life by God’s grace. You must be righteous just as He is righteous, just by His grace. Heaven is meant for the righteous not unrighteous people who claim faith without works.
“Little children, let no one deceive you. He who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous.” 1 John 3:7. The false teachers and permissive Christians say no need to practice righteousness after you are saved, that it is all about the righteousness of Jesus. But here. Bible does not say “He who claim righteousness is righteous” but it clearly says, “He who practices righteousness is righteous” You will not want to be disappointed after you die.
“Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. 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. For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under law but under grace.” Romans 6:12-14.
We are saved by grace for godly living!
God bless you.
Gideon Akande, the Evangelist