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Wednesday: Our Sinful and Fallen Nature — 25 Comments

  1. It is interesting that during his ministry most of Jesus' religious disputes were with the conservative Jews, the Pharisees. They used religious observance as a tool for control and liked to give the impression that they were on the high moral ground and had the scholarship and right to tell others what to do. And yet, Jesus saw through their religious grandstanding and condemned them as whited sepulchres. He saw them as hypocrites, protecting their image, but at the same time living inconsistently with what they were teaching.

    I watched a TV program the other night and one of the main characters who had lived a somewhat shady life finally did an unexpected act of kindness. In her haughty voice, she gave a one-liner that was worth remembering. She said, "The view is wonderful when you are standing on the high moral ground!" The problem with that view is that you are often enjoying it so much that you fail to see yourself.

    Jesus was well aware of that problem:

    And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?
    Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?
    Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye. Matt 7:3-5

    Now I am not saying that the conservatively religious have taken out a mortgage on hypocrisy. I am well aware that most of us irrespective of where we stand on the spectrum of religious belief are quite capable of seeing others with 20-20 vision and not seeing ourselves in the same light. That is the biggest temptation we face.

    Some of us believe that the church of Laodicea characterises that particular kind of blindness:

    Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:
    I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. Rev 3:17-18

    It is the sort of blindness that leads us to condemn others without acknowledging our own weaknesses and faults.

    What is the takeaway message from this mornings lesson? In our effort to spread the Gospel we should see ourselves as students willing to learn, rather than teachers teaching the unlearned.

    Amen!(46)
    • The quoted text in Revelation 3 diagnoses the problem and follows with the solution. Not so much Wednesday's assignment in the Study Guide. Thank you, Maurice, for injecting the message of hope into today's study.

      "Now to Him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you blameless before the presence of His glory with great joy, to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen." Jude 25.

      Amen!(9)
  2. Only in Christianity, we are given the privilege of intercessory prayer? Interceding behalf of someone else. Every religion teaches save yourself. Christianity says, I have already saved you. Now save the world.

    In the midst of this devastating disease reach out and help one another in this way, you will shine God’s light into the world.

    Amen!(30)
  3. Was it 'sin' that 'radically altered, ruptured and fractured our relationship with God? The lesson writer for today's lesson states that there is 'no question' that it was.

    Let's look at what sin is and does. Rom.4:15; Rom.5:12-14; v.13 - 'For until the law sin was in the world: but sin is not IMPUTED when there is no law.'
    Sin, entering this world through Adam and with this the 'ability' to continue to sin is our present condition.

    At the beginning, everything that was created was perfect.
    The Creator's creation is upheld by His authority invested and expressed through His perfect law.
    It is the original, ultimate order established by the Creator God's undisputed authority. (though Satan is trying)
    Build into His law is the incredible ability to define and detect 'sin', and manifest sin's effect as a violation of the law.

    This leads me to conclude that it was our Creator's established order with its ability to recognize 'sin' and 'judge' it as such, that defines what sin is.
    It established 'sin' to be a violation of God's law.

    Therefor, sin is 'only' the evidence/expression of a violation to God's established order. Ultimately, unresolved violations by the unrepentant person that does not accept this law's authority will lead to death.

    In conclusion - we could use the word 'sin' to denote that 'something' violated the governing law of the universe, which when violated (sinned against), will express itself with an reaction/effect upon the 'violator' to show the violator that the law that governs our ordered universe is 'set in stone' -like the 10 Commandments.

    To the discerning mind, Sin is therefor not the 'cause' of our separation from God, but the 'evidence and a flashing light of warning' that an action occurred that violates the established law governing our universe.

    Because God loves us, when He opened our eyes to recognize what 'sin' is, He had to also give us the understanding of the consequences should one decide to violate His perfect law.

    For the redeemed, to know and recognize that 'sin' is evidence of separation from God, should and will generate a great desire to stay close to his Maker.
    Even more so if he/she was found living in great darkness, much like the prodigal son, and then to be again embraced by God's Love, Mercy and Grace to walk in His wonderful Light.

    Because of His infinite Mercies He accepted us to be hid/live 'in' Him again through Jesus Christ.
    Thank God for His Love, Mercy and Grace by which we were saved through the (sinless)righteousness and Faith of our Savior Jesus Christ.

    Amen!(10)
    • Hi Brigitte.

      In the lesson, the writers acceptance of sin being the undeniable cause of separation would probably stem from the reading of Adam and Eves immediate expulsion from Eden as the clear indicator of what caused the breach. Sin caused an immediate destruction of our relationship with God.

      Our race rebelled against God and sided with Satan.

      As fallen human beings the first comment or answer was to cast the blame first on God and then others, excusing responsibility. In Adams reply I can immediately identify myself. My inclination from within my sinful heart is to blame others and excuse myself. In short, I am selfish and self centred.

      Sin creates a separation from God, and without the Spirit living within me suddenly every thought of my heart is evil continuously. I am sinful from the moment of my conception. I am indistinguishable from Satan.

      Fortunately Jesus has right from the first moment of Adams sin, protected us from falling under the full dominion of Satan and of sin. In that short decree after sin is exposed in our race, a battle is declared. Satan is to have no unimpeded control, and is told that Heaven will fight him on our side. The Spirit has been ejected from our parents by sin, but He will still fight on our side. He will work to soften our hearts, convict us of sin, break our allegiance to sin, and lead us back to God. The difference between Satan and humans is that the Spirit still pleads with us.

      But the Spirit is to have no free reign to direct and guide us, He has to battle both Satan and our own sinful, covetous, obstinate and wilful hearts. He can not force. Force is foreign to God. He can accept only that which is freely given. We can expel the full might of God from our hearts in an instant when we exert our will against Him, because He never forces or overrides our freedom of choice.

      This is the thrust of Jesus words to Nicodemus that night. We have a crucial and fatal flaw, one so insidious and blinding that unless we are born again, we cannot even *see* the kingdom of Heaven.

      Adam was created sinless and the Holy Spirit was with him and and within him from his first breath, as was Eve. Sinful thoughts and tendencies did not exist. With the indwelling Spirit, every thought and action was sinless and holy.

      But all that innocence and purity was lost in the instant sin entered our race. Evil now comes from within.

      It is best described as being sinful from the moment of conception, as we are in a state of wrong *being*, which leads to inevitable wrong *doing* the instant our brains can form a thought.

      Because we are flawed at our first birth, born without an indwelling Spirit, that we have to be born again, born of water and of the Spirit.

      No created being can ever live sinless when separated from God. Total separation from God is what makes us irretrievably sinful. We are not in that state until we reject every attempt of the Spirit to lead us back to God. When we finally silence the voice of God leading us back to Him, we pass the point of no return.

      So we see that separation from God makes us sinful, and being sinful leads to immediate sinfulness, which are acts of sin, the breaking of Gods pure and holy law. Our sad state is that we do not even appreciate how sinful we are, blinded as we now are.

      Our sinful hearts believe there is some morsel, some spark, of goodness within. There is none. In and of ourselves we are evil through and through. It is only the influence of God, exercised on our behalf that gives us any shred of good. Not even faith comes from within us, it is the gift of God. Without the power of the Holy Spirit working within, we are even unable to respond with love, faith or any good thing.

      Our dependance on God is total and complete for no one is good but God.

      Amen!(2)
    • I appreciate this analysis, Brigitte. I am wondering what we do with the Scripture that tells us that sin separates us from God (Isaiah 59:2) and how does it relate with Jesus having been "made sin for us," (2 Cor. 5:21) that is, Jesus became sin personified.

      Amen!(0)
      • Hello Pastor James,

        I have struggled with the concept of God making Jesus be “sin for us” (2 Corinthians 5:21) for many years. Recently, I have been studying the OT ritual sacrifices in the books of Moses, and came across the idea that “sin offering” can also mean “sin;” that is, God made Jesus a sin offering for us, not sin for us. The KJV and its derivative translations obscure this interpretation; however, Bible translations for those with a Jewish background (Complete Jewish Bible, Orthodox Jewish Bible and Tree of Life Version), as well as several modern translations (New Matthew Bible, New International Version, Christian Standard Bible, New Living Translation and New Matthew Bible) align with this interpretation.

        Our condition after we were duped into believing Satan’s lies about God was desperate. And God in his love and mercy foresaw our need for a Saviour to show us the Truth about himself that we might behold the Lamb of God that takes away our sin (our wretched misunderstanding of his character) and have Life as he intended, right from the beginning.

        Richard Ferguson

        Amen!(1)
        • Hello Richard:

          I can and do understand your struggle. I have too. I will try and give as clear an explanation of what I have found in my studies over the years since I was struck by what the verse said.

          I have concluded that the grammatical construct used rules out "sin offering" in my opinion. The words used for sin are not speaking of a "sin-offering" but sin as sin. I don't believe any of the 27 times the word is used is it ever in the idea of "sin-offering." I am also not so sure what the difference is. Indeed, Jesus was offered for sin, but that transaction necessarily made Him sin, as the Greek states

          Secondly, it is in contrast with our being "made the righteousness of God" in Him. Jesus is God's righteousness personified and we in Him by faith are made the same. It's not just a "righteousness offering." It is sin and in contrast it is righteousness. Christ took it all into Himself to give us all of Himself to us to remove our sin and have His righteousness. It's a complete transaction that gives all rights to save man. No argument against it can stand before it.

          It ends any notion that Jesus had some advantage because he was God, too. It certifies that His sacrifice was absolutely drinking fully of the dregs of evil. The second time Jesus is offered the vinegar while He is on the cross, He received it, that is, He took it in just as He expired. I believe it symbolically showed that He was made sin. Too, in the SOP when the general darkness was lifted, a column of impenetrable darkness keep Jesus enclosed for some time after, I believe demonstrating the "black hole" for which sin really is, because Jesus became sin. Jesus died that second death, the one for which there is no return. But because He did become sin and died that fullness of the second death He had the right to bring Himself back, which He did. And it cannot be said that God has not done enough. He did more than any being could have done.

          There is another verse that supports Him being made sin, and that is Paul's saying Jesus was "made a curse for us." It was His being made a curse that we can be redeemed from it. Thus, I think all the evidence argues against simply "sin-offering," and, again, I am not sure that changes any thing. Sin-offering....offering Himself as sin, taking upon Himself the hideousness of evil as if He committed it and the evil committed upon the innocent. This completeness of being made sin for us provides the "healing" that we receive from His stripes. For our sin as one that produces it, and as one that has received it from others, it all was in Him and because of it we can be healed.

          It's hard to take it in because of how offensive it is. The perfect Creator becoming that which is entirely opposite of Who He is. Like Paul, all I can say is "thanks be to God for His indescribable Gift!"

          Amen!(3)
      • Hi James and Richard.

        If I may offer something for investigation regarding unpacking of 2 Corinthians 5:21 - which is indeed a pivotal text and concept.

        1) Keeping the Greek meaning for “sin” (hamartia/n) in mind: forfeiture due to missing of ‘the mark’, we would ask what is ‘the mark’ being referred to? I would propose that ‘the mark’ that humanity was created for was ‘the mark’ that Jesus consequentially came to restore as per His declaration in John 10:10. Is this a reasonable proposition?

        2) 2 Corinthians 5:21 and Galatians 3:13 appear to be conceptually parallel statements/passages as James has noted. However, I would offer that there are several other conceptually parallel statements that enable an unpacking and fleshing out of what 2 Corinthians 5:21 is meaning (as a condensed summation statement):

        Romans 8:3
        Hebrews 2:17 in conjunction with Hebrews 4:15
        Isaiah 53:12
        Hebrews 12:3

        Rather than me outlining what I have found from combined and detailed exploration of the above verses in conjunction with point (1), I would invite each of you to do your investigations of these and let me know what you find. I would be very interested in what you each and both find ...

        Amen!(0)
        • Hello Phil:

          Good inquiry. I would suggest that "the mark" is the righteousness of God. That is the nature in which we were first created and the nature for which we lost. It is what is required to have to be in God's presence, and that restoration is what brings life abundant.

          Anyway, that seems to be the sense I get from the texts shared.

          Amen!(2)
      • Hi Kevin -
        Yes, sin has separated us on a fundamental level from our Creator. Much deeper and much more profound than we usually consider when we speak of 'sin'.

        Iniquities, unrepentant of, are the tell-tale of a sinful heart. Iniquities repented off, are the tell-tale of a willing heart to be guided through obedience to God's law which will bring about reconciliation through His Mercy and Grace!

        2Cor.5:21 is a mystery to me. Though we know that through God's plan, as established by Him and executed through the faith of Jesus, our sins/iniquities are now covered by Christ's righteousness, we can not fully appreciate the 'universe-wide shaking' that took place when the work was finished. And now, our sins will not be remember any longer!

        We can only respond with praise and adoration to our living God's design of such a marvelous rescue of His people.

        Amen!(2)
        • Hello Brigitte:

          Indeed, the sin problem is very profound. The moment Eve and Adam went from innocence to accepting a lie, fundamentally setting up their own righteousness, the ramifications of their decisions are enormous. It is what Paul calls the "law of sin" in our members. It goes very deep and thus Jesus' sacrifice went even deeper in order to rectify the problem.

          Grateful to have a "hiding place" in the LORD Himself. God is indeed good.

          Amen!(1)
  4. KJV Isaiah 59
    Sin Separates from God
    1 Behold, the LORD'S hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear:
    2 But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.
    Isaiah 59:1,2

    Amen!(7)
    • Norma, I appreciate your comment. I believe scripture is clear on what separates us from God and what keeps us from understanding what is in scripture. Wednesday’s lesson said it very well also. If we enter our study with doubt, we cannot see the truth.

      Amen!(2)
  5. The voice that we heard from childhood stayed in the heart. Becoming an adult made me question everything I've learned. But as Israel's in the desert, I just wander around circles until I found myself at the same place! Living the prodigal son's experience for myself was the turning table. Covid-19 has pushed me and my family through the narrow way a little further, desert! May all the glory be to God, who through His Son Jesus demonstrates His passion for us. "We were lost as sheep, not really knowing where we were going, until we heard the good sheperd's voice!"

    Amen!(5)
  6. Today's lesson states "Sin affects all of our human existence. It also affects our ability to interpret Scripture. It is not just that our human thought processes are easily employed for sinful ends, but our minds and thoughts have become corrupted by sin and, therefore, become closed to God’s truth."

    There are a range of ways we can become 'closed' to God's truth. While some of the more overt ones are reflected in the remainder of the lesson content, it is the more subtle manifestations that affect the greater proportion of people - especially within Christianity. These subtle manifestations relate to mistaken perceptions about how reality operates and therefore how God operates.

    We can see this right from the outset in the first few chapters of Genesis. We see God's perspective on how reality operates in Genesis 1 and 2 - and then we see Satan's insinuated perspective in Genesis 3. Some of Satan's key misportrayals/presuppositions include:

    *) life is the default reality - even for those who are outside of a relationship with God. Therefore, when a person dies it is because God has taken life from them.
    *) 'God's ways' are arbitrary - He does what He pleases and He does it because it is His right to do so. There is a wider reality outside of God's ways that is equally viable and even superior.
    *) God is being restrictive and prohibitive (hence the notion of the "forbidden fruit").

    It is unfortunately often the most subtle deviations that have the greatest impacts upon us as humans. It is precisely how our planet became sin-infected in Genesis 3 in the first place.

    It is not that we believe per se that is the problem - it is that what we believe directly shapes how we live and therefore how we treat others. That is where the 'rubber (of our beliefs) hits the road'.

    Amen!(3)
    • Phil, I happen to disagree with the quarterly's assertion that sin affects our ability to understand the word of God, which includes the "perfect" law of the Lord. We will know its clear meaning as long as we don't turn away from it deliberately. It was written to be understood by sinners, or how could it be a lamp for our feet and light for our path? God intends to reach sinners, not saints. No one will have a valid excuse in the judgment.

      Yes, we must walk in that light to continue to grow in our understanding, but the Word IS living and powerful, sharper than any two-edged sword, and will reveal our corrupt thoughts and intentions IF we allow it. Once we harden our hearts against truth, we will be left to our own understanding and the light will become a great darkness.

      I also believe that Satan never gave his true perspective, but purposefully lied in order to make God look unjust and dishonest. Satan doesn't believe his own lies, he only needs to convince us to believe them. He knows his time is very short, and that God is just. I'm sure that is what you mean as well.

      If honest with ourselves, we will know what we need to do to be saved. Scripture needs no "translation", only honest admission to the clear conviction the Holy Spirit will bring without fail(John 16:8) until we turn away from it in rejection of God's rightful sovereignty over all His works.

      Amen!(2)
      • Robert, please allow me to comment -
        Our redemption starts with God's Grace - unmerited, undeserved. And this is so for a reason.

        Sin has deformed/distorted the workings of our minds and hearts. They can not 'recognize' - as in being the same - any longer their Maker. Being originally formed with the ability to - 'recognize and being one, 'known' by their Maker, - they have lost this ability through the effect of sin.

        Yes, as you point out, the Scripture was written to also reach the sinner. Though, should it find a resonance in the heart of the sinner, it is so by God's Mercy. THEN, he is set on his way toward the Light of God.
        The sinner, so convicted, accepts repentance which enables him to 'learn' God's truth. Light upon light, truth upon truth, he then continues the exciting and joyful walk of faith.

        Yes, it is not enough that we 'understand' the word of God. Desiring to repent and the Scripture reader's willingness to apply its revealed truth to his/her life is essential to grow and move forward.

        First, we 'hear' the knock and, should we respond to the 'knocking at the door', our heart will be opened and God's Holy spirit starts to open our eyes.

        The process of 'sanctification' is based on the willingness to submit OUR will and 'work together' with God's Holy Spirit. This endeavor is not controlled by us. We pray that God's Will becomes ours.
        Psalm 37:23,24 - 'The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD and he delighteth in his way...

        From the very beginning, God's Grace does its marvelous work and infuses with Mercy everything we encounter along the path of His Light.
        And again, Yes, 'the Word IS living and powerful' and does its cleansing work in the willing believer's heart.
        Malachi 3:1-3 - v.3 - ..and purge them as gold and silver, that they may offer unto the LORD an offering in righteousness.

        As we walk along this path illuminated by His Light, we give Him our filthy garments to be cleansed in the blood of the Lamb's righteousness.
        To the willing heart, He reveals the 'sins' - the acts of unrighteousness - so that we can lay them at His feet and repent of them and continue on our walk by faith to receive the price - Eternal Life.

        The effect of sin has placed our entire 'being' outside of the 'fabric' of God's established law.
        Mind, body, spirit - all have to be renewed; for some more radically, for others less.

        Rom.3:23 'But all of us have sinned and come short of the Glory of God.'
        This is the serious assessment of the state of our present condition.

        Though, there is a consolation and a promise to all who believe and stay the course -
        This Glory will be imparted in the end to the faithful that finish the race - what a magnificent prize is waiting for us!

        Amen!(1)
        • Hello Brigette, just seeing this, and would guess there is agreement about the ability of the Word of God bringing light to minds darkened by sin. Notice this ability of the Word to convict the 3000 at Pentecost when a fisherman shared the Truth.(though 3000 accepted the truth, many more rejected it while under the same conviction) Notice how they would take up stones to stone Jesus because they understood, but didn't like it. Titus 2:11-14 tells me the lost have chosen to reject the truth. No one will be lost because they just couldn't comprehend and didn't know they were guilty of sin.

          God works to save sinners, and has given His word in such clearness that only those who resist its convictions will be lost in their chosen darkness(John 3:19,20)

          How could the words inspired by God "reprove, correct, and instruct in righteousness" if no sinner could understand it? We would have to become Holy before being reproved, then what would be the point?

          It is my belief that the most heartless killer would understand "Thou shalt not kill". The fact that they work to conceal their guilt proves this doesn't it? Yes, with enough rejection of truth, sinners will believe lies(2 Thess 2:10-12)

          My understanding is that sin harbored(in rejection of truth) will be the cause of our downfall, and not the inability to understand the clear truth of God's Word given to a world of sinners to save them from sin. No sinner will be able to say: "I had no idea!". Like the man without the wedding garment, they will have no answer for their guilt.

          Amen!(1)
  7. Our fallen nature will only get in the way of understanding the word of God when we stifle the sure conviction God's word will bring to every soul in order to follow our fallen nature. Scripture comes with truth being presented "as clear as the noonday". We each choose how to respond to this clearness.

    Next time you are close to a Church Hymnal, pick it up and read through hymn #524.

    Amen!(6)
  8. Praise ye the Lord. Praise the Lord, O my soul. Ps 146:1
    Oh Holy One, help me to praise you today even in my sinful state. Open my eyes to your works and words.

    Our fallen and sinful nature.

    Sin had changed the very DNA in our bodies, as a result, it affected our minds, soul, body, and spirit. Sinful humans are spiritually blinded by Satan. Therefore we are caught in a spiritual war, A War To See. A war in which we are caught between two forces. Satan on one side and Christ on the other. We can't see either of them because they are unseen, but we hear them speaking to us. The force is real. Both speak to our minds, both say if you follow me I will make/give/provide you with happiness forever and you will never need anything. Then our thought process comes into play. Who is true? who is the counterfeit? This battle/war started approx six thousand yrs and cont unto today.
    Ques- who do we listen to? who do we follow? can humans decide of themselves who to follow? Who did Adam and Eve listen to?

    In the OT we see God gave his laws and precepts to man(Adam and Eve) as a blessing. Satan said the laws and precepts were a burden and it was impossible for man to keep them. Years went by and God cont to revised (gave them over and over again as men forget them) and revisit his laws and precepts so we can see the blessings. Men began to try to protect God's laws by adding man laws to them.

    As time went by, a pure religion began to be tainted by Satan. God's Holy people began to have different beliefs and separated themselves into groups/sects.
    The Jewish Sects- The Pharisees/separated ones Matt 15:1
    The Sadducees Mark 12:18; Luke 20:27.
    The Essence of which nothing was mentioned about this group because they lived such a strict separated life, not mingling with the common people.
    The Herodians Mark 3:16; Matt 22:16
    The Zealots Luke 6:15
    For this reason and other reasons, Jesus came to this world at that time to open the eyes of the spiritual blinded leaders. They were blind and so were their followers.

    “Dost thou believe on the Son of God?” the blind man replied by asking, “Who is He, Lord, that I might believe on Him?” And Jesus said, “Thou hast both seen Him, and it is He that talketh with thee.” The man cast himself at the Saviour’s feet in worship. Not only had his natural sight been restored, but the eyes of his understanding had been opened. Christ had been revealed to his soul, and he received Him as the Sent of God. {DA 475.1}
    Rev 3:17-2 The end-of-time church is spiritually blinded, but we say we can see and need nothing. Jesus councils us that we need eye-salve for our eyes. But we must be praying for spiritual sight so Jesus can open our eyes.

    Amen!(6)
  9. When the word of God is opened without reverence and without prayer; when the thoughts and affections are not fixed upon God, or in harmony with His will, the mind is clouded with doubts; and in the very study of the Bible, skepticism strengthens. The enemy takes control of the thoughts, and he suggests interpretations that are not correct. Whenever men are not in word and deed seeking to be in harmony with God, then, however learned they may be, they are liable to err in their understanding of Scripture, and it is not safe to trust to their explanations. Those who look to the Scriptures to find discrepancies, have not spiritual

    insight. With distorted vision they will see many causes for doubt and unbelief in things that are really plain and simple. {SC 110.1}

    Amen!(1)
    • Thank you for sharing your insight, Okolla! Yes, I agree - 'seeking to be in harmony with God' (or not taking it all that important) makes the difference in how and if we discover and process the truth 'hidden' in the Scriptures.
      Truth comes to light - is revealed - when our spirit humbly seeks it; then, God's Holy Spirit brings it to our understanding.
      Yes, reverence and prayer are the gateway which prepares our heart to find, understand and accept God's Truth.
      With our faith strengthened through understanding and acceptance, Christ's righteousness brings us into the presence/harmony with our Father.

      Amen!(0)
  10. Righteousness: is the quality or state of being morally correct and justifiable.

    This is Wikipedia's definition. It gives very detailed references where/who/how it relates to our life. One tidbit, shared with you without the nuances (which are important to the scholar) I gleaned from reading, is, that a reference to 'Righteousness' appears over 500 times in the Hebrew Bible and more than 200 times in the new Testament.

    Righteousness is the essential, one and only, state that God requires in order for us to become a citizen in the new Kingdom. Remember that there will be no more darkness or variance to the state of 'being'. We will be a new creation - now in spirit, then in form.

    We know that we can not appear before God in our own righteousness, we have to be covered by Christ's righteousness.

    Following are references to righteousness in different settings:
    Gen.15:6 - And he believed in the LORD and He counted it to him for righteousness.
    Jer.23:5,6 - ..he shall be called THE LORD OF RIGHTEOUSNESS.
    Rom.1:17 - For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.
    Rom.3:21-26 - ..for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God....
    Rom.4:5 - But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.
    Rom.10:3,4 - For they being ignorant of God's righteousness and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.

    v. 4 - For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone that believeth.

    Our sinful and fallen nature wants to continue to maintain a sense of righteousness - but this is self-righteousness.
    Rom 3:10 - As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one.

    Isaiah 64:6 - But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousness are as filthy rags; and we all fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.

    John Ch.14 -
    v.20 - At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me and I in you.

    Thank you Heavenly Father for your Mercy and Grace that has saved us from certain destruction.

    Amen!(0)
  11. Sin indeed distorts our ability to discern truth and God. Adam and Eve ran from God when the took that tragic step to stand in a lie. They suddenly had a new view of each other and of God. Life changed drastically and the full scope of that change has been unfolding over the millennia since. Again, we are called to humility in our approach to Scripture in recognizing we are distorted and we can't trust to ourselves to make sound discernment.

    Amen!(1)

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