`The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles` (Psalm 34:17). The Bible is full of God`s promises: `Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall` (Psalm 55:22). If we could only hold on firmly to these truths our lives would be changed dramatically. `The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective` (James 5:16). Many of them are dependent upon certain conditions, or addressed to a particular group of people, like `the righteous.` This prompts us to examine ourselves and wonder if we are good enough to qualify. Does my life measure up to the standard required? Is it even possible to be righteous? - It would appear not: `There is no one righteous, not even one` (Romans 3:10). `All our righteous acts are like filthy rags` (Isaiah 64:6). So what hope do we have?
There is One who is righteous: `Jesus Christ, the Righteous One` (1 John 2:1). He walked in close relationship with the Father, `tempted in every way, just as we are - yet was without sin` (Hebrews 4:15). It is in Him and through Him that our righteousness is revealed. `Christ Jesus has become for us wisdom from God - that is our righteousness, holiness and redemption` (1 Corinthians 1:30).
We have no righteousness of our own. Only that which is by faith in Jesus. Christ is our righteousness, and in Him we are made righteous. This is our standing in God according to His word. How then, can we be sure that we are `in Him?` - Again Scripture reassures us: `You… were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation.` (Ephesians 1:13). `If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God` (1 John 4:15).
In Christ we can be sure that we are not excluded from any of God`s promises. `For all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen` (2 Corinthians 1:20). We are `blessed with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places` (Ephesians 1:3), `for is your Father`s good pleasure to give you the kingdom` (Luke 12:32).
Prayer: Thank You Father for Your grace and mercy. I realise my strength lies not in myself but in Him who died for me. Help me to hold on to that assurance, and to know the reality of those precious promises that come through living in Him, in Jesus` name. Amen.