February 22, 2018

Topic Day|Righteousness

The Right Source of Righteousness

Romans 3:21–23

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The Righteousness of God Through Faith

21 But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it—22 the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,

The Right Source of Righteousness

Central Truth

Our own attempts toward righteousness will never be enough. Righteousness comes only from God through Jesus; there is nothing we can add to or take away from it. It stands perfectly complete because Jesus did what we could never do—live an incomparably righteous life.

Devotional | Righteousness

Romans was the first book I read after learning to study my Bible in Equipped Disciple at Watermark. I remember I kept circling righteous(ness). I realized I didn’t fully understand righteousness...

Romans was the first book I read after learning to study my Bible in Equipped Disciple at Watermark. I remember I kept circling righteous(ness). I realized I didn’t fully understand righteousness and was trying to make it on my own merit.

I believe our journey through Romans thus far has led to these three verses. Paul just spent the first part of his letter explaining how not a single one of us measures up to God’s standard. If the book ended at Romans 3:20, it would be an incredibly depressing and incomplete read. Thankfully, Paul is just getting started. Here, he drops the mic on those who claim they can be righteous on their own. He’s purposely led up to this moment to talk about the righteousness of God. He also reminds us that all of Scripture was a loud and obvious crescendo leading up to the death and resurrection of Jesus, the exact occasion by which it became possible for us to be righteous.

Righteousness is defined as the state of being in the right. When it comes to having good standing with God, there can be nothing in the “wrong” column. The Old Testament Law was put in place to show us what absolute perfection would look like and to be a reminder that we need God.

If I just consider that thought quickly (that I’m not good enough), my pride wants to say otherwise. But if I meditate on the truth of these verses, I am reminded of how terribly broken and sinful I am, and yet how incredibly whole I’m made in Jesus. It is impossible for us to be righteous, no matter who we are, how we were raised, or where we are from. And that is some of the best news you will ever hear. No matter how good or unworthy you think you are, being righteous is only possible through faith in Jesus. Come as you are. God asks you to change nothing. He will transform your dirty rags of sin and shame into white robes of righteousness. Through Jesus, we're made clean!

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Bio | Katie Hernandez

Hey there! My name is Katie Hernandez. My husband and I have been married for more than five years, and we have been attending Watermark Fort Worth for almost three years.

By day, I am a teacher. It is there that I am reminded constantly of how broken we are. Most days I have to cling to Jesus and His Word to keep my sanity. I learned this best from Watermark's Equipped Disciple ministry, even after believing in Jesus for 18 years. How to have a daily relationship with Christ and read His Word finally made sense to me!

Discussion Questions

1. Is there anything in your life that is holding you back from believing that God’s righteousness truly dwells in you, whether you struggle with pride about your “righteousness” or shame over your unrighteousness? What steps can you take today to walk in the truth and freedom of these verses from Romans? 1 Corinthians 1:30-31 and 2 Corinthians 5:17 would be a great place to start to find truth.

2. This gift of righteousness is available to everyone. Can you think of someone who needs to be told about the amazing story of the gospel? Or maybe even someone who just needs to be reminded of this truth? Pray for that person by name, and try to find time this week to reach out to them. Be bold. You have great news to share!

3. 2 Corinthians 5:21 says, “For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” Paul has just described how no one, not even the chosen nation of Israel, could ever reach perfection. Yet Jesus, perfect in every way, took our sin on Himself and gave us righteousness in return. In light of what you’ve read today, what does this verse mean to you? How might your prayers reflect your thoughts of His gift of righteousness?

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