Posts Tagged ‘righteous’

The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures; he leads me beside still waters; he restores my soul. He leads me in right paths for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I fear no evil; for you are with me; your rod and your staff—they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.  Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD my whole life long. (Psalm 23, NRSV)

This psalm is a favorite for comfort at funerals, or during difficult situations.

But it is much deeper than we see.

He leads me in right paths is more of a He gets me stuck in a rut where He leads me. A righteous groove and it helps me to follow and stay focused on Him.

God prepares a banquet before our enemies, who are ready to kill us, but He gives us space and time to party and eat while He holds our enemies at bay!

And surely at the beginning of verse 6 is a little bit of a bad translation. It should be more of an Only. Goodness and mercy will pursue me all of my life and only that. My enemies will not neither will anything else other than the goodness and mercy of God.

He has set up a righteous groove to feed us His goodness and mercy!

So walk in it and know that he is always guiding!

 

170125As Jesus was walking along, he saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax booth; and he said to him, “Follow me.” And he got up and followed him.  And as he sat at dinner in the house, many tax collectors and sinners came and were sitting with him and his disciples. When the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” But when he heard this, he said, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick. Go and learn what this means, ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have come to call not the righteous but sinners.” (Matthew 9:9-13, NRSV)

Jesus did not come to call the righteous but sinners, for the healthy have no need of a hospital or a doctor.

So then the righteous are those who are already in right with God.

I like to think of it as the righteous are those who think they know what God wants and are doing it and therefore don’t need God. Sinners are those who know they have messed up and know they can’t fix it on their own. They need help.

Until we admit we need help, there is no helping us.

So are you righteous or a sinner?

170108Then Jesus came from Galilee to John at the Jordan, to be baptized by him. John would have prevented him, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?” But Jesus answered him, “Let it be so now; for it is proper for us in this way to fulfill all righteousness.” Then he consented. And when Jesus had been baptized, just as he came up from the water, suddenly the heavens were opened to him and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, the Beloved, with whom I am well pleased.” (Matthew 3:13-17, NRSV)

John wanted Jesus to baptize him, I mean after all John’s baptism is a baptism of repentance, of confessing our sins. Does Jesus really need to confess sins? Does Jesus really need to be baptized?

But it is proper to do this to fulfill all righteousness! What does that mean? To fulfill all righteousness. To make all divine sinless things come to be.

Jesus did not need to confess sins or be made clean. But in order for the divine plan to proceed forward this was a step that needed to be done. Doesn’t mean we need to understand it. We just need to know that Jesus is God’s beloved son and through Him we can have a relationship with God.

161228But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of any works of righteousness that we had done, but according to his mercy, through the water of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit. This Spirit he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life. (Titus 3:4-7, NRSV)

Not because of what you have done or didn’t do.

But because of His mercy!

Through the inpouring of the Holy Spirit and through the rebirth of His mercy we are made heirs to the kingdom according to the hope of eternal life!

So know it is not because of you, it is a because of Jesus.

160808After these things the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision, “Do not be afraid, Abram, I am your shield; your reward shall be very great.” But Abram said, “O Lord GOD, what will you give me, for I continue childless, and the heir of my house is Eliezer of Damascus?” And Abram said, “You have given me no offspring, and so a slave born in my house is to be my heir.” But the word of the LORD came to him, “This man shall not be your heir; no one but your very own issue shall be your heir.” He brought him outside and said, “Look toward heaven and count the stars, if you are able to count them.” Then he said to him, “So shall your descendants be.” And he believed the LORD; and the LORD reckoned it to him as righteousness. (Genesis 15:1-6, NRSV)

Have you ever had a promise broken?

Have you ever had a promise made that seemed like it just wasn’t going to happen?

Abram’s circumstances said to him that his only offspring would be the son of a slave. Yet God is always good to His promises.

So God showed Abram the stars in the sky and told him to count them, and this will be the number of your descendants.

And that is not the best line in the passage. But the last line is, “And Abram believed the Lord!”

You see a promise is only as good if the person it is made to believes it. And even this outlandish promise is believed, and because of that Abram is considered righteous.

He believed God, who is good on His promises.

Do you?

“You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’  But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,  so that you may be children of your Father in heaven; for he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the righteous and on the unrighteous.  For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet only your brothers and sisters, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same?  Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. (Matthew 5:43-48, NRSV)

Love your neighbors and hate your enemy…

No love your enemy and pray for those who persecute you!

Really? Those who wish to cause me harm, and to see bad things happen to me, I need to pray for them and love them!

Because the rain falls on the just and the unjust, the righteous and the unrighteous.

If we only love those who love us or can do something for us, how will the world see we are different? How will they know that they need what we have if we are just like everyone else?

We will not be different, they will not see the love of God in us. We must show the love that pulled us out of the depths when we did not deserve it, so that others will be drawn to God.

Grace1Praise the LORD! O give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever. Who can utter the mighty doings of the LORD, or declare all his praise? Happy are those who observe justice, who do righteousness at all times. Remember me, O LORD, when you show favor to your people; help me when you deliver them; that I may see the prosperity of your chosen ones, that I may rejoice in the gladness of your nation, that I may glory in your heritage. Both we and our ancestors have sinned; we have committed iniquity, have done wickedly. Our ancestors, when they were in Egypt, did not consider your wonderful works; they did not remember the abundance of your steadfast love, but rebelled against the Most High at the Red Sea. Yet he saved them for his name’s sake, so that he might make known his mighty power. He rebuked the Red Sea, and it became dry; he led them through the deep as through a desert. So he saved them from the hand of the foe, and delivered them from the hand of the enemy. The waters covered their adversaries; not one of them was left. Then they believed his words; they sang his praise. (Psalm 106:1-12, NRSV)

Happy are those who observe justice who do righteousness all the time!

So I guess that leaves all of us out!

How many of us are righteous all the time? I know of only 1 “person” who was righteous all the time. He also didn’t judge. But none of us are Jesus…

But we like the ancestors of old have sinned and committed iniquity and done wicked things. We are not always good, nor do we always do righteous things.

Yet God saved them out of Egypt for His name’s sake, and He will save us too!

They were delivered by His word and we can be too!