When You Let Jesus Enter Your Life, Righteousness Comes To You
The Bible in John 4 records a conversation Jesus has with a Samaritan woman at the well. This woman has been married five times and is now living with a man who is not her husband. With such a background, coupled with her ethnicity as Samaritan who at that time is a despised people group, this woman must be facing much pressure and ostracizing from the community. Her status and conduct do not qualify her as righteous and acceptable in the eyes of the society.
The woman goes to the well to fetch water in the heat of the day, presumably to avoid running into anyone. At the well, she meets Jesus for the first time. But Jesus knows all about how she has been living her life. Jesus does not talk with her in a condescending manner nor treats her with condemnation, but with compassion. Jesus asks for a cup of water from her, and even offers her living water that she never will thirst again.
Jesus knows the deepest thirst and need in this woman’s life. Jesus sees her inner inadequacy, inferiority and shame. Jesus understands her deep desire to be accepted and loved, longing to be able to hold her head up high and walk around in the midst of people. This is a desire she perhaps has never dared to tell anyone.
As the conversation develops, the woman begins to be aware that this is Jesus – the Messiah, the Savior and King – who is talking to her. Right at the moment when she believes and embraces His Words and truth into her life, she receives living water in her life. Jesus says in John 4:14 (NLT), “…those who drink the water I give will never be thirsty again. It becomes a fresh, bubbling spring within them, giving them eternal life.”
When the woman lets Jesus enter her life, His righteousness comes to her. It is now immaterial whether she matches up to the standards of the society. She discovers in Jesus the only righteousness she ever needs – the right standing with God and unconditional acceptance by God. The power of this truth sets her free and she goes to town telling everyone to come and see Jesus, the Savior. The very same people she has been avoiding for fear of their ridicule and rejection – she is now boldly telling them in their face about the Savior she has just encountered. The divine power of Jesus’ righteousness in our life!
The dictionary defines righteous as “acting in accord with divine and moral law, free from guilt or sin”. What then is this ‘divine and moral law’ that governs righteousness?
Romans 3:20 (NIV)
…no one will be declared righteous in God’s sight by the works of the law…
2 Corinthians 5:21 (NLT)
For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.
Our compliance with societal or traditional views of the righteous way of living cannot obtain for us righteousness. Neither does this make us free from guilt or sin.
Righteousness is found only in Jesus Christ. When the perfect and blameless Son of God who has never sinned, sacrificed His life for our sins, you and I have been made righteous through Him. We now have the right standing with God, fully and wholly accepted by our loving Savior. We cannot manufacture our own righteousness through our good lifestyle or self-effort, and we do not have to. Righteousness is a gift from our Almighty God.
When you let Jesus enter your life, righteousness comes to you and your life. Jesus stands in the gap between you and the Heavenly Father. You are no longer separated from Him but have the right standing with Him and a relationship with Him. With His righteousness in your life, whenever there is a shortfall in your ability, finances, health, emotions, relationship, Jesus comes and stands in the gap for you, to make and put things right.
This is God’s enormous love! Jesus bore our sin and our punishment so we could bear His righteousness and His reward.
In order to access Christ’s righteousness, we need to first receive Him as Savior and Lord of our life and ask that He forgives our sin. The Bible tells us in Ephesians 2:8 & 9 that it is only by God’s grace and through our faith, not by our good works, that we are saved. I pray you accept this gift today, and experience how Jesus is going to change your life and your world.
Having received God’s righteousness, God wants us to use and live out this gift. Act according to His commandments in all that we do, relying on His strength to live as righteous sons and daughters of God. Continue to love and worship God in your everyday life, and share this gift of righteousness. Like how the Samaritan woman stands in the streets shouting to all to come and know Jesus, we ought to be telling people in our world about the wonders Jesus has done in our life.
Let us pray together.
“Heavenly Father, I thank You for sending Jesus to bear my sins and punishment and thereby giving me the gift of Your righteousness. I thank You for giving me right standing before You and with You. I thank You for Your total and unconditional acceptance. I thank You that my value is built on You and not on any worldly views. I commit to live out my right being with my right doing, always bringing glory and praise to Your Name. Praise You, Jesus. In Your Name, I pray. Amen.”