We are living in a time and in a season where it is crucial for the Bride of Christ to walk in the light of her redemption. In order to accomplish this, it is essential to have a heart revelation of our true identity, knowing and embracing the reality of who we have been made to be through our union with Christ Jesus.
Bride of Christ, I exhort you to consider that through regeneration you have become a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17) and a partaker of the divine nature of God (2 Peter 1:4). As a recipient of God's divine nature, you possess a new identity; an identity crafted after the image and likeness of God. Of the many facets of your glorious identity "in Christ Jesus", righteousness is the foundational component. In order to fulfill our role as the end-time Bride of Christ, we simply must be awakened to righteousness!
The whole drama of the romance of redemption is contingent upon mankind being made the righteousness of God. Jesus paid the ultimate price to secure righteousness for us. The Apostle Paul writes, "For our sake He made Christ [virtually] to be sin Who knew no sin, so that in and through Him we might become [endued with, viewed as in and examples of] the righteousness of God what we ought to be approved and acceptable and in right relationship with Him, by His goodness" (2 Corinthians 5:21). What a staggering exchange! Although our Beloved Jesus never committed sin, He willingly was made to be sin with our sin, so that we could be made righteous with His righteousness. Our righteousness is not merely imputed to us, our whole nature is infused with the righteousness of God. We literally become the righteousness of God. In becoming the righteousness of God, we become suitable for an eternal relationship withGod - a relationship that begins in this earth realm and continues throughout the endless ages of eternity.
One of the greatest revelations that Believers must grasp is a revelation of righteousness. Vine's Expository of New Testament Words paints a vivid picture of the meaning of the word righteousness: "... that gracious gift of God to men whereby all Who believe on the Lord Jesus Christ are brought into a right relationship with God. This righteousness is unattainable by obedience to any law, or by merit of man's own, or any other condition than that of faith in Christ... the man who trusts in Christ becomes 'the righteousness of God in Him',...i.e. becomes in Christ all that God requires a man to be, all that he could never be in himself."
What wonderful news! Everything that God requires us to be, all that we can never attain in and of ourselves, God makes us. We truly become "what we ought to be, approved and acceptable and in right relationship with Him" (2 Corinthians 5:21). This means that since we are in right standing/right relationship with God, we are all that God requires us to be (all He commands and approves); therefore, we can stand in His presence without a sense of sin, shame, fear, guilt, or condemnation. As a righteous one, we have the incredible privilege of coming boldly to God's throne and receiving grace and mercy to help us in our time of need (Hebrews 4:16).
Although righteousness under the Old Covenant was obedience/performance based, our righteousness is not - it is faith based. When we, by faith, receive Jesus as our Savior, we are instantly made right (righteous) with God. No amount of money can buy this position; neither can good works, nor any personal merit secure our righteousness. Righteousness is a gift from God (Romans 5:17), and can only be found in one place - "in Christ Jesus".
The Apostle Paul in addressing the Church at Philippi stated that he put no confidence in the righteousness of his flesh; his confidence was in the righteousness he found in Christ. "And that I may [actually] be found and known as in Him, not having any (self-achieved) righteousness that can be called my own, based on my obedience to the Law's demands ritualistic uprightness and [supposed] right standing with God thus acquired but possessing that [genuine righteousness] which comes through faith in Christ, the Anointed One, the [truly] right standing with God, which comes from God by (saving) faith" (Philippians 3:9).
When we are found "in Christ", we are judged righteous, for we are judged on the basis of Christ's Own perfection and not according to our carnal flesh. Any self attained righteousness is as filthy rags in the sight of God (Isaiah 64:6). Much to our amazement, God's pleasure in us has nothing to do with our talents, service, or performance. It has to do with our faith in the perfection of Christ and what He accomplished for us in His substitutionary sacrifice. 1 Corinthians 1:30 states: But it is from Him that you have your life in Christ Jesus, Whom God made our wisdom from God, [that is, revealed to us a knowledge of the divine plan of salvation previously hidden, manifesting itself as] our Righteousness and thus making us upright and putting us in right standing with God; and our consecration - making us pure and holy; and our Redemption - providing our ransom from eternal penalty for sin.
One of the ways to combat an inferiority complex is renewing our minds to who we are in Christ, giving special attention to the gift of righteousness that has been imparted to us; a gift that, in reality, changes our whole spiritual DNA. It would greatly benefit us to daily stand in front of our mirrors and boldly and confidently proclaim: "I have been redeemed by the Blood of the Lamb and because of my redemption, I am a new righteous creation." In this amazing truth, we find our past, our present, and our future. When the reality of this truth comes alive in our inward parts, inferiority and lack of confidence in our worth will no longer be able to hold us captive.
Romans Chapter 8 is one of my favorite passages of scripture. I would like to bring your attention to verses 33, 34: "Who dares accuse us whom God has chosen for his own? Will God? No! He is the one who has given us right standing with himself. Who then will condemn us? Will Christ Jesus? No, for He is the one who died for us and was raised to life for us and is sitting at the place of highest honor next to God, pleading for us" (New Living Translation).
If you are struggling with a sense of sin consciousness, shame, guilt or condemnation, I exhort you, "Take hold of your right standing with God." Jesus paid a tremendous price in order for you to be made righteous! All your flaws, weaknesses, inadequacies and failures cannot make you unrighteous. Your righteousness is an eternal truth. Always remember: Because of who you have been made in the inner person of your heart, you are approved and acceptable in the sight of God. He sees you today, and will forever see you as righteous.
As the Bride of Christ, we are presently being formed and prepared for our role in God's grand end time drama. I perceive that we will come to a place of great revelation concerning who God has made us to be in our inward person. We will grasp the reality of righteousness. In doing so, as the Bride of Christ, we will arise fully conscious of our righteous standing with God, and in that arising, we will walk in victory, exercising dominion and authority in this earth. We will be "terrible and awesome as a bannered host" (Song of Solomon 6:10). What a glorious future we are marching toward!
SCRIPTURES FOR MEDITATION:
Psalms 5:12, 34:15-19, 37:39, 92:12-15
Isaiah 32:17, 54:14-17, 61:3, 10
Romans 3:20-26, 5:1-17, 6: 12-23, 10:9-10
1 Corinthians 1:30
Ephesians 4:24, 6:14
Established in Righteousness
2 Corinthians 5:21 Philippians 3:9 1 Corinthians 1:30 Romans 1:16 Romans 8:33