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The apostle Paul wrote 13 books in the New Testament. One of which is considered the magnum opis (best of the best), his letter to the Roman church. In this letter Paul deals with several things which have transformed lives for generations. However, his main theme comes through in Romans 1:17. This scripture deals with the mystery of faith and how faith brings the righteousness of God. Today I’d like to look at a couple key terms in this scripture. Righteousness and what is it, how we get this righteousness, and How the Gospel of Jesus Christ fits into this puzzle.


Romans 1:17

New International Version (NIV)

 17 For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed—a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.”

What is Righteousness

First, there are two different kinds of Righteousness and in order to explain it best we need to know which kind we are looking at. Righteousness (Greek, dikaiosyne) can either refer to “God’s righteousness” or the “righteousness that comes from God”. The one we are looking at here is the righteousness that comes from God which he gives or imparts to us. This righteousness is like a stamp of approval and acceptance from God. It is the when God views us as being “in the right” in His sight. It is His acceptance of us. The dictionary puts it like this, "righteousness is to be morally right, without sin and without guilt in Gods sight". That sounds great. To be accepted by God is the aim of C Christians everywhere, and for that matter people every where, but how do we get this righteousness from God?


                                               How do we get Righteousness

Jesus has a pretty high standard about righteousness in his statement in Matthew 5:20, "For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven." The pharisees of the day were those people who spent their whole lives studying, reading, and memorizing God's laws. In fact, not only them but Jews both old and even still today look to the law for their salvation and for their righteousness. Instead Jesus says we would have to be more righteous than even the most admirable church people of the day if we wanted to get to heaven. I’m not sure about you, but I don't think I would measure up to well to that standard. So then this righteousness doesn't  come from keeping the law. 

Romans 3:10-12

New International Version (NIV)

10 As it is written: “There is no one righteous, not even one;

People in all parts of the world have the good ole boy or girl syndrome. “If I just live a good life God will accept me”. Now this sounds good but is nowhere in the bible. Our good deeds, no matter how good, can't earn us righteousness from God. In fact, in Isaiah God says ALL our righteousness is as filthy rags. Imagine, all our good works we do all our lives (lets go even a step further in case your like me and your good works side is a little lacking) and all the good works from the Popes, Preachers, Mother Teresa, down to you and me, for all time, all generations, from the beginning of the world till now, God says even all of those added together wouldn't save us or make us right in His sight. So if the law can't do it and we can't do it, how do we get Righteousness? That is what the Good news of Jesus Christ is all about!

                                                 Gospel of Jesus Christ


Romans 1:17

New International Version (NIV)

 17 For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed—a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.”

Paul says we obtain the blessed state from God not because of what we can do nor by the law that we can keep but only through faith, and that faith is in Jesus Christ.

John 3:16 

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.


We are saved through faith in Jesus' death on the cross and we are justified in his resurrection. We are saved through faith. Just through belief. Isn't that amazing! But we  must have belief in the right thing. We can't believe in our good deeds because they won't work, only Jesus. We can't believe in the law. The law can't save us. The law can only show us how much we need to be saved. Only Jesus. Only Jesus can save us. When we trust in Christ Jesus God will credit his righteousness to our account. What an amazing Savior we have!


To simple? Just believe in Jesus and I’ll be saved? The truth is .....yes! Jesus came for me and for you and for all who would come to him. He knew that we could never make it on our own so He came and took all our punishment for all the sins we have committed and He nailed them to the cross. He died so that we wouldn't have to. Then He rose and is alive now and forever and he is waiting for us to put our trust not in the things of this world but in Him. The Bible declares:


Acts 4:12

New International Version (NIV)

12 Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.”

If you want to believe in Jesus today, just talk to Him. Let him know that you can’t make it own your own and you need him to save you and be your Lord and Savior. Ask him to forgive you, receive his free gift of salvation. Then go tell the world what the mystery of faith is all about, and about your savior Jesus Christ.



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