Today we dig deeper into the idea that our righteousness is by faith and by the grace of God – not of ourselves. This truth helps us to stop judging each other’s righteousness (or lack thereof) and realize that we all sin, and God has rescued us all by his amazing grace.
7 and if [God] rescued Lot, a righteous man, who was distressed by the depraved conduct of the lawless 8 (for that righteous man, living among them day after day, was tormented in his righteous soul by the lawless deeds he saw and heard)…
10 As it is written:
“There is no one righteous, not even one;
11 there is no one who understands;
there is no one who seeks God.
12 All have turned away,
Righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. 25 God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood—to be received by faith. He did this to demonstrate his righteousness
33 Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character.”
Yesterday I was struggling with the idea that Lot was a righteous man, given what I read about his actions in the Genesis 18-19 story of Sodom. The answer is, of course, that just as we cannot judge the righteousness of Lot based on his behaviour, we appreciate that our own righteousness is not judged by God based on our own behaviour. For none would ever be declared righteous.
Peter calls Lot righteous in his second letter, and we know from Paul’s writing in Romans, there is no one righteous. What fills this gap in teaching? Jesus Christ. God demonstrates his righteousness by sending Jesus Christ. God offers his righteousness to us through Jesus Christ. Our faith in God is what provides righteousness for us.
This is a righteousness (Ephesians 2) which is not earned and we cannot boast. In fact, we ought to be cautious altogether, lest our deeds be laid out before all people. Would any of us look righteous in that light? We are under grace, and we are righteous by faith.
The lesson of Lot, however, is that the righteousness man can be corrupted by bad company. Who we spend our time with and align ourselves with impacts our practical righteousness. We will have a hard (harder) time living righteous as we choose to live with the wicked who disregard God.
Praise God for righteousness by faith.
Trust God and keep your eyes on Jesus.
Choose good company to preserve righteous character.