Saturday, December 13, 2014

The Lord Who Makes Us Right - December 13, 2014

Jeremiah 23:5-6 (New King James Version)
5“Behold, the days are coming,” says the LORD,“ That I will raise to David a Branch of righteousness; a King shall reign and prosper, and execute judgment and righteousness in the earth. 6 In His days Judah will be saved, and Israel will dwell safely; now this is His name by which He will be called:

THE LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS (YHWH Tsidkenu).


Jeremiah 23:5-6 (New International Reader's Version)
5 "A new day is coming," announces the Lord. "At that time I will raise up from David's royal line a true and rightful Branch. He will be a King who will rule wisely. He will do what is fair and right in the land. 6 In his days Judah will be saved. Israel will live in safety. And the Branch will be called The Lord Who Makes Us Right With Himself.

2 Corinthians 5:21 (New International Version, ©2010)
21 God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.


How long do we need to go through life depending on our own efforts to be made right with God? For some, this life is all there is and they feel that they might as well enjoy all that they can. For others, they feel as long as the are good and better than the next guy, if there is something on the other side, they hope that somehow things will balance out.

There are many who try to follow a religion that tells them that their works, the things they do or follow will make them right with God. For some, they twist this to mean that the many awful and violent things they do in the name of god, justify their evil acts. They could be no farther away from the truth. Many will only learn on the "other side" the folly of their deeds.

There are even religions that call themselves Christian that only believe what Jesus did on the cross is but a part of what you need to do to be made right with God and acceptable to Him. Instead of thinking through this, those other religions would rather place the burden back on the people to somehow make themselves right with God. The sad thing is that many go to the end of their lives still wondering if they are good enough, which they will never be.

At the end of your life there will be no scales on which to measure your works or deeds. There will be no heavenly accountant at the pearly gates. The standard will be that if you stand on your own, you will have to be absolutely perfect to be made right with God. There can be no lies, no lusts, no thefts, no sins, nothing that could be considered evil, or you will be condemned.

The amazing truth is this: God did for us what we could not do for ourselves. It is God alone who provides righteousness to mankind through Jesus Christ. He endured his journey in the flesh, bore the guilt and shame of the cross, and the agony of his death, so that we could be seen as not guilty before God and saved from all of our sinful deeds. That is all there is to it.

Why people find it so difficult to accept and take the much harder road of trying to be come righteous on their own is beyond me. Unless we are born perfect and stay that way throughout our entire lives we will never make it. If you have accepted God's Christmas gift to you, embrace it and share it. If you have not accepted it, ask for it and take it.

Painting of the birth of Christ by Dutch painter Gerard van Honthorst

 

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