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29. How Can You Become Righteous?

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And he said, Behold now, I have taken upon me to speak unto the Lord: Peradventure there shall be twenty found there. And he said, I will not destroy it for twenty’s sake. And he said, Oh let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak yet but this once: Peradventure ten shall be found there. And he said, I will not destroy it for ten’s sake. And the LORD went his way, as soon as he had left communing with Abraham: and Abraham returned unto his place. (Genesis 18:31~33)

Spiritual Life Is Difficult Without Clarity

Spiritual life, once you know what it is, is truly easy. Once we learn something at school and come to know something, it is easy, but when you don’t, it is very difficult. Spiritual life, for the most part, is difficult because of the lack of clarity. People are deceived by Satan and simply think, “All I have to do is not sin according to the Word of God and be good, don’t I?” If you could become good and have the ability to live according to the Word, the Bible would only have to be a few pages long. It would only have to say, “Be good. Live according to the Word. Then you’ll be fine.” The Bible teaches us our image through completely revealing to us the world of our hearts. The conclusions we arrive at are different from the ones God arrives at. When I meet with people and speak to them about spiritual life, many say to me, “Pastor, although I am weak now, I think I can do well if I try. Right now, my heart is not settled and it is difficult but, when things do settle down, I will live as a good person.” They think that it is that simple. The important thing is that it may appear on the surface to be this way, but they must know that we can never completely keep the Word of God.

What Will You Do if There Are Ten Righteous?

God is talking to Abraham about the destruction of the city of Sodom and Gomorrah in today’s scriptures. Here, it speaks of the “righteous.” Abraham contended with God, saying, “God, will you destroy the city even if it has 50 righteous people? Should you not be fair when you are judging the world?” Just as it is written in 2 Peter, “. . . and delivered just Lot,” Abraham’s nephew, Lot, was a redeemed, righteous child of God. Abraham had assumed that since Lot, his wife, and his two daughters were living in the city, there were four righteous persons, so there must be at least fifty people who had received salvation through the four of them evangelizing. Then God spoke. “I will not destroy the city if there are fifty righteous there.” Upon hearing this, Abraham thought, “Why is God so willing to adhere to my proposal? I don’t think there are fifty there. Then let me take away five.” Then he once again spoke to God, “Will you destroy the city if there are five people short?” “No, if there are forty-five righteous, I will not destroy the city.” Abraham thought, “Does this mean that there are not even forty-five righteous people there?” “What will you do if there are forty?” asked Abraham. “I will not destroy the city,” said God. “What will you do if there are thirty righteous people?” “I will not destroy the city.” “What will you do if there are twenty righteous people?” “I will not destroy the city.” Lastly, Abraham was sure that there were at least fifty righteous people and he had contended with God again. However, that was not true and he was discouraged. Then he spoke once again to God: “God, I will speak only this time. What will you do if there are ten righteous?” “I will not destroy it for the sake of the ten,” replied God. Lot, who was saved, his wife, and his two daughters entered the city of Sodom. But rather than testifying of the grace of God to have ten people, twenty people, or fifty become righteous, the four of them fell into the world. This was the reason for God passing down destruction. God is ready to destroy this world, but He is not doing so because He wants at least one more person to be saved and not destroyed. Nevertheless, the works of people being saved did not happen as Lot entered the city of Sodom. Rather, it was Lot who started falling more and more into the world. God did not feel the need to wait any longer. He decided to destroy Sodom. There were nowhere near fifty righteous people, and lastly, when the judgment came upon Sodom and Gomorra, Lot’s wife was also thrown away and only three were delivered.

Quickly Throw Away Trying to Be Good

Was Lot saved because he lived as a good person while he was in the city of Sodom? That was not so. Did he keep the law well? He did not do that at all. He became righteous through the grace of God. People do not know about this aspect very well so they only think, “If I listen to the Word to be a good person and keep the law without sinning, I shall become righteous.” This is a thought from a human perspective, but the image of man from God’s perspective is, the Heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked (Jeremiah 17:9). In the eyes of God, there is no one who appears to be holy, righteous, or good. The Lord looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, and seek God. They are gone aside, they are all become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no, not one. (Psalms 14:2-3) Man thinks that he can be good if he tries, but God says, “No, you humans have no good in you because you are filthy, dirty, and evil by nature.” This is the difference between the thoughts of God and the thoughts of man. Now man must submit to how God sees him. “Yes, if you say that there is none that is good, then that is right.” However, people try to be good because they feel that they can accomplish it if they try. God, on the other hand, says that there is no good in man, and that He could not find any goodness, righteousness, or holiness in any man. But seeing things from man’s perspective, man disagrees with this.

If Korea Is on the Other Side, Let Us Dig Until We Get There

There was a missionary who once ministered to a South American Indio tribe called Nambikwara. This missionary had a chance to visit Korea and told the Indios, “I’ll be visiting Korea for awhile.” How could the Indios, who live in the jungle, know where Korea is? “How far is Korea?” “It is very far. On the globe, we are here, and Korea is completely on the other side. That is why I am taking an airplane there.” When the missionary explained this, one Indio said, “If we are here, and Korea is on the other side, why do you have to take a plane to get there? Just dig into the ground until you get there. As you dig, if there is water then you can drink it. And if you keep digging and reach Korea, you’ll be there.” That was what the Indios thought. The Indios also have a very simple way of counting. One “cana cana.” Two “ha-ri.” Three is expressed as “ha-ri cana cana,” and four is “ha-ri ha-ri.” After that, there is no more. The rest is simply expressed as “many.” They have no five, six, or even seven. If we tell these Indios that Korea is 15,500 miles from Brazil, how could they know a number as big as 15,500? They only express it as “many,” or “far away.” Since they have no idea how big the earth is, they simply think with the knowledge they have, which is that you can dig until you reach Korea. We are more advanced in our numeric concept than the Indios, but there is not much of a difference between us and them in the eyes of God. Although you may appear to be a little better than your neighbor; though you may be more honest than some church goers; everyone is the same in the eyes of God. We have all fallen into evilness and into sin. We just make up some goodness from within our filthy, dirty, and sinful nature and try to show that off. In spite of that, it disappears quickly. Because evil and dirty hearts continually spring up inside of man, God can never discover any goodness that comes from man. There are many people who think that they are good, righteous, godly, and honest. It seems that way at man’s level. We are able to do more good than our neighbors. We can be godlier than other people. We can even be more honest than someone who is always deceiving people. We can also be more truthful than a person who lies continually. All of these things are relative from man to man. You appear to be good when you judge yourself in this way, relative to others. Nevertheless, you are not good in the eyes of God.

You Said that There Is None Righteous, and Now You Say There Is?

Romans chapter 3, verse 10 says, There is none righteous, no, not one. But the interesting thing is that the “righteous” are often mentioned in the Bible. Noah was a just man. (Genesis 6:9) It says that Noah was righteous. The Bible also says that Abraham was righteous. Lot was also recorded as a righteous person as in the words, delivered just Lot, in 2 Peter chapter 2, verse 7. The Apostle Paul also said, “I have righteousness.” The Bible also says, in James chapter 5, verse 16 that, the fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much. The Bible also mentions a “righteous Job.” As we can see, in the Bible, there are many righteous people. It is here where people feel confused. “The Bible says that there is none righteous, but why are there righteous people in the Bible?” People are unable to find an answer to this and simply conclude, “There is none righteous. I am a sinner until the day I die. The Bible says there is no one who is righteous.” However, when we look deeper into this, there is a precise answer. There is no one righteous among man because we humans are all filthy and dirty. If so, how did Noah become righteous? God is righteous. Therefore, the people who receive the righteousness of God are those who become righteous people. This is not their righteousness, but the righteousness of God. Apostle Paul said this in Philippians: . . . not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith. (Philippians 3:9)

Because We Are Crooked and Evil by Nature

I had no idea that I had a crooked walk. I once went jogging, and for some reason, there was a large mirror there. I ran in front of the mirror and I could see that my left foot went forward properly, but my right foot swung outwards. Right then, I came to know that the way I walk was crooked. Afterwards, I tried to walk straight whenever this came to mind, but when I asked a doctor about this, he said, “Pastor, your leg muscles have already developed accordingly, so unless you constantly concentrate on this, you will subconsciously walk crookedly.” I can walk straight when I think to, but when I don’t think about it, my right foot goes forward crookedly because my muscles have developed in a crooked way. This is how people are. Because people have crooked personalities, they have some images of goodness when they remember to be good, but quickly, they become crooked again. Because you are filthy, honest images come from you occasionally when you are trying to be truthful, but after a couple of steps, the filthy things come out from you. Dirty things, lustful things, and deceitful things come out from you as well. This person is not a proper person but a crooked person. Man cannot become good when he is consciously trying to become good. While he may be honest and truthful, then, when he is not totally concentrating, he quickly becomes evil, dirty, and filthy. That person is evil. He is a crooked person. However, people remember for a long time the one good deed they have done, and think that they can live properly. They walk crookedly all of the time, but when they take one good step, they think, “I can walk straight.” That is total nonsense. A long time ago, a teacher was teaching English to children at a small school in a village. He could not pronounce, “Windy wind.” Therefore, he said to them, “Repeat after me. Vindy vind.” Then all the children said, “Vindy, vind.” He said, “Hey kids, it’s not vindy vind. It’s vindy vind.” Then the children again said, “Vindy vind.” The teacher realized that his pronunciation was wrong. Then he said to the children, “Hey kids, even though I say, ‘Vindy, vind,’ you guys should say, ‘Vindy vind.'” This teacher could not say, “Windy wind,” no matter how hard he tried.

We Are Righteous Through the Righteousness of Jesus

That is exactly how we are. We cannot become righteous through our actions. We cannot do it no matter how hard we try. That is why we need to give up on ourselves and receive the righteousness of God. That is how Apostle Paul became righteous. Jesus committed righteousness and did not sin once during his 33 years of life on this earth. Jesus lived a holy life. On the contrary, we both ate and drank sin our entire lives. We could only be destroyed because of this. Hence, God gave us the holy righteousness of Jesus who had not sinned for all of His 33 years, while casting the dirty sins we committed throughout our lives upon Jesus. He made an exchange. We could never have been saved unless this was done. God cast all the sins we committed onto Jesus and gave to us the holy righteousness Jesus lived with. Whether you wanted it or not or whether you know it or not, God has already accomplished this. Because our sins have moved over onto Jesus, Jesus became a sinner although He had not sinned. On the other hand, we became righteous through the righteousness of Jesus although we did not live righteously. It was not by my righteousness, but the righteousness of Jesus! This was achieved in heaven, in the heart of God, and in the heart of Jesus. Finally, this needs to become achieved in our hearts. How could this become achieved in our hearts? Saying, “Ah, my sins have moved onto Jesus and were ended on the cross! I have the righteousness of Jesus, so I am righteous! That is why God called me righteous!” and realizing and accepting it into your heart is what achieves righteousness in your heart. Nevertheless, people do not know this, and labor to become righteous through trying to live righteously. It is impossible for us to become righteous through our efforts to be good. On the contrary, it is so easy to accept the righteousness that Jesus has achieved. There is no one who can become righteous through not sinning and committing righteousness, but it is very easy to become righteous if you accept what Jesus has done. Can a woman make a child just because she wants to? She may draw out the image of a person in the dirt but how can she make blood vessels, a heart, and pour life into the drawing? A woman can have a child through receiving life from a man. Even if the woman cannot draw or sculpt well, she can have a truly beautiful child who has eyes, a nose, a heart, and everything else if she receives the seed from a man. We cannot make righteousness with our efforts. However, we can have righteousness if we accept it. This is what God did for us. We do not become righteous through our efforts or good deeds, but He has us accept the righteousness of Jesus which was accomplished through a 33-year-long life without a single sin, and a life of righteousness. If we accept the life of Jesus, we are more righteous than anyone because we then have the righteousness of Jesus. He did this whether you are good or bad, have zeal or no zeal, regardless. God did not care whether you were dirty, filthy, evil, or full of lies, but He gave you the righteousness of Jesus. He had Jesus take away all of your sins. He exchanged Jesus for your sins. Jesus, who was without sin, bore your sins and became a sinner. You became righteous through being clothed with the righteousness of Jesus. Jesus is righteous and we are sinners. But through this exchange Jesus became a sinner and we became righteous. As a testament of this, Jesus was crucified on the cross to shed His blood for your sins. When you accept this by faith, the righteousness of Jesus comes upon your heart, and you become righteous. Then it is extremely easy to become righteous.

You Are Righteous if You Have Righteousness

It is not that we have to make righteousness, but we become righteous through receiving the righteousness of Jesus. Because Abraham realized this, he thought that Lot preached the Word of God to the people of Sodom while Lot was there. Abraham thought there would be at least fifty righteous people there. On the contrary, Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed because Sodom did not even have ten righteous people. Someone who has received the righteousness of Jesus is righteous. Who is rich? If someone inherits a lot of wealth from his father, he is rich. Even though you have no money, if you win the lottery and receive $10 million U.S. dollars, you are rich. Whether you made the money or not, you are rich if you have much money. In becoming righteous as well, whether it was you who made it or not, you are righteous if you have righteousness. We become righteous, not through our effort, but through receiving the righteousness of Jesus.Spiritual Life Is Difficult Without Clarity

Spiritual life, once you know what it is, is truly easy. Once we learn something at school and come to know something, it is easy, but when you don’t, it is very difficult. Spiritual life, for the most part, is difficult because of the lack of clarity. People are deceived by Satan and simply think, “All I have to do is not sin according to the Word of God and be good, don’t I?” If you could become good and have the ability to live according to the Word, the Bible would only have to be a few pages long. It would only have to say, “Be good. Live according to the Word. Then you’ll be fine.” The Bible teaches us our image through completely revealing to us the world of our hearts. The conclusions we arrive at are different from the ones God arrives at. When I meet with people and speak to them about spiritual life, many say to me, “Pastor, although I am weak now, I think I can do well if I try. Right now, my heart is not settled and it is difficult but, when things do settle down, I will live as a good person.” They think that it is that simple. The important thing is that it may appear on the surface to be this way, but they must know that we can never completely keep the Word of God.

What Will You Do if There Are Ten Righteous?

God is talking to Abraham about the destruction of the city of Sodom and Gomorrah in today’s scriptures. Here, it speaks of the “righteous.” Abraham contended with God, saying, “God, will you destroy the city even if it has 50 righteous people? Should you not be fair when you are judging the world?” Just as it is written in 2 Peter, “. . . and delivered just Lot,” Abraham’s nephew, Lot, was a redeemed, righteous child of God. Abraham had assumed that since Lot, his wife, and his two daughters were living in the city, there were four righteous persons, so there must be at least fifty people who had received salvation through the four of them evangelizing. Then God spoke. “I will not destroy the city if there are fifty righteous there.” Upon hearing this, Abraham thought, “Why is God so willing to adhere to my proposal? I don’t think there are fifty there. Then let me take away five.” Then he once again spoke to God, “Will you destroy the city if there are five people short?” “No, if there are forty-five righteous, I will not destroy the city.” Abraham thought, “Does this mean that there are not even forty-five righteous people there?” “What will you do if there are forty?” asked Abraham. “I will not destroy the city,” said God. “What will you do if there are thirty righteous people?” “I will not destroy the city.” “What will you do if there are twenty righteous people?” “I will not destroy the city.” Lastly, Abraham was sure that there were at least fifty righteous people and he had contended with God again. However, that was not true and he was discouraged. Then he spoke once again to God: “God, I will speak only this time. What will you do if there are ten righteous?” “I will not destroy it for the sake of the ten,” replied God. Lot, who was saved, his wife, and his two daughters entered the city of Sodom. But rather than testifying of the grace of God to have ten people, twenty people, or fifty become righteous, the four of them fell into the world. This was the reason for God passing down destruction. God is ready to destroy this world, but He is not doing so because He wants at least one more person to be saved and not destroyed. Nevertheless, the works of people being saved did not happen as Lot entered the city of Sodom. Rather, it was Lot who started falling more and more into the world. God did not feel the need to wait any longer. He decided to destroy Sodom. There were nowhere near fifty righteous people, and lastly, when the judgment came upon Sodom and Gomorra, Lot’s wife was also thrown away and only three were delivered.

Quickly Throw Away Trying to Be Good

Was Lot saved because he lived as a good person while he was in the city of Sodom? That was not so. Did he keep the law well? He did not do that at all. He became righteous through the grace of God. People do not know about this aspect very well so they only think, “If I listen to the Word to be a good person and keep the law without sinning, I shall become righteous.” This is a thought from a human perspective, but the image of man from God’s perspective is, the Heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked (Jeremiah 17:9). In the eyes of God, there is no one who appears to be holy, righteous, or good. The Lord looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, and seek God. They are gone aside, they are all become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no, not one. (Psalms 14:2-3) Man thinks that he can be good if he tries, but God says, “No, you humans have no good in you because you are filthy, dirty, and evil by nature.” This is the difference between the thoughts of God and the thoughts of man. Now man must submit to how God sees him. “Yes, if you say that there is none that is good, then that is right.” However, people try to be good because they feel that they can accomplish it if they try. God, on the other hand, says that there is no good in man, and that He could not find any goodness, righteousness, or holiness in any man. But seeing things from man’s perspective, man disagrees with this.

If Korea Is on the Other Side, Let Us Dig Until We Get There

There was a missionary who once ministered to a South American Indio tribe called Nambikwara. This missionary had a chance to visit Korea and told the Indios, “I’ll be visiting Korea for awhile.” How could the Indios, who live in the jungle, know where Korea is? “How far is Korea?” “It is very far. On the globe, we are here, and Korea is completely on the other side. That is why I am taking an airplane there.” When the missionary explained this, one Indio said, “If we are here, and Korea is on the other side, why do you have to take a plane to get there? Just dig into the ground until you get there. As you dig, if there is water then you can drink it. And if you keep digging and reach Korea, you’ll be there.” That was what the Indios thought. The Indios also have a very simple way of counting. One “cana cana.” Two “ha-ri.” Three is expressed as “ha-ri cana cana,” and four is “ha-ri ha-ri.” After that, there is no more. The rest is simply expressed as “many.” They have no five, six, or even seven. If we tell these Indios that Korea is 15,500 miles from Brazil, how could they know a number as big as 15,500? They only express it as “many,” or “far away.” Since they have no idea how big the earth is, they simply think with the knowledge they have, which is that you can dig until you reach Korea. We are more advanced in our numeric concept than the Indios, but there is not much of a difference between us and them in the eyes of God. Although you may appear to be a little better than your neighbor; though you may be more honest than some church goers; everyone is the same in the eyes of God. We have all fallen into evilness and into sin. We just make up some goodness from within our filthy, dirty, and sinful nature and try to show that off. In spite of that, it disappears quickly. Because evil and dirty hearts continually spring up inside of man, God can never discover any goodness that comes from man. There are many people who think that they are good, righteous, godly, and honest. It seems that way at man’s level. We are able to do more good than our neighbors. We can be godlier than other people. We can even be more honest than someone who is always deceiving people. We can also be more truthful than a person who lies continually. All of these things are relative from man to man. You appear to be good when you judge yourself in this way, relative to others. Nevertheless, you are not good in the eyes of God.

You Said that There Is None Righteous, and Now You Say There Is?

Romans chapter 3, verse 10 says, There is none righteous, no, not one. But the interesting thing is that the “righteous” are often mentioned in the Bible. Noah was a just man. (Genesis 6:9) It says that Noah was righteous. The Bible also says that Abraham was righteous. Lot was also recorded as a righteous person as in the words, delivered just Lot, in 2 Peter chapter 2, verse 7. The Apostle Paul also said, “I have righteousness.” The Bible also says, in James chapter 5, verse 16 that, the fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much. The Bible also mentions a “righteous Job.” As we can see, in the Bible, there are many righteous people. It is here where people feel confused. “The Bible says that there is none righteous, but why are there righteous people in the Bible?” People are unable to find an answer to this and simply conclude, “There is none righteous. I am a sinner until the day I die. The Bible says there is no one who is righteous.” However, when we look deeper into this, there is a precise answer. There is no one righteous among man because we humans are all filthy and dirty. If so, how did Noah become righteous? God is righteous. Therefore, the people who receive the righteousness of God are those who become righteous people. This is not their righteousness, but the righteousness of God. Apostle Paul said this in Philippians: . . . not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith. (Philippians 3:9)

Because We Are Crooked and Evil by Nature

I had no idea that I had a crooked walk. I once went jogging, and for some reason, there was a large mirror there. I ran in front of the mirror and I could see that my left foot went forward properly, but my right foot swung outwards. Right then, I came to know that the way I walk was crooked. Afterwards, I tried to walk straight whenever this came to mind, but when I asked a doctor about this, he said, “Pastor, your leg muscles have already developed accordingly, so unless you constantly concentrate on this, you will subconsciously walk crookedly.” I can walk straight when I think to, but when I don’t think about it, my right foot goes forward crookedly because my muscles have developed in a crooked way. This is how people are. Because people have crooked personalities, they have some images of goodness when they remember to be good, but quickly, they become crooked again. Because you are filthy, honest images come from you occasionally when you are trying to be truthful, but after a couple of steps, the filthy things come out from you. Dirty things, lustful things, and deceitful things come out from you as well. This person is not a proper person but a crooked person. Man cannot become good when he is consciously trying to become good. While he may be honest and truthful, then, when he is not totally concentrating, he quickly becomes evil, dirty, and filthy. That person is evil. He is a crooked person. However, people remember for a long time the one good deed they have done, and think that they can live properly. They walk crookedly all of the time, but when they take one good step, they think, “I can walk straight.” That is total nonsense. A long time ago, a teacher was teaching English to children at a small school in a village. He could not pronounce, “Windy wind.” Therefore, he said to them, “Repeat after me. Vindy vind.” Then all the children said, “Vindy, vind.” He said, “Hey kids, it’s not vindy vind. It’s vindy vind.” Then the children again said, “Vindy vind.” The teacher realized that his pronunciation was wrong. Then he said to the children, “Hey kids, even though I say, ‘Vindy, vind,’ you guys should say, ‘Vindy vind.'” This teacher could not say, “Windy wind,” no matter how hard he tried.

We Are Righteous Through the Righteousness of Jesus

That is exactly how we are. We cannot become righteous through our actions. We cannot do it no matter how hard we try. That is why we need to give up on ourselves and receive the righteousness of God. That is how Apostle Paul became righteous. Jesus committed righteousness and did not sin once during his 33 years of life on this earth. Jesus lived a holy life. On the contrary, we both ate and drank sin our entire lives. We could only be destroyed because of this. Hence, God gave us the holy righteousness of Jesus who had not sinned for all of His 33 years, while casting the dirty sins we committed throughout our lives upon Jesus. He made an exchange. We could never have been saved unless this was done. God cast all the sins we committed onto Jesus and gave to us the holy righteousness Jesus lived with. Whether you wanted it or not or whether you know it or not, God has already accomplished this. Because our sins have moved over onto Jesus, Jesus became a sinner although He had not sinned. On the other hand, we became righteous through the righteousness of Jesus although we did not live righteously. It was not by my righteousness, but the righteousness of Jesus! This was achieved in heaven, in the heart of God, and in the heart of Jesus. Finally, this needs to become achieved in our hearts. How could this become achieved in our hearts? Saying, “Ah, my sins have moved onto Jesus and were ended on the cross! I have the righteousness of Jesus, so I am righteous! That is why God called me righteous!” and realizing and accepting it into your heart is what achieves righteousness in your heart. Nevertheless, people do not know this, and labor to become righteous through trying to live righteously. It is impossible for us to become righteous through our efforts to be good. On the contrary, it is so easy to accept the righteousness that Jesus has achieved. There is no one who can become righteous through not sinning and committing righteousness, but it is very easy to become righteous if you accept what Jesus has done. Can a woman make a child just because she wants to? She may draw out the image of a person in the dirt but how can she make blood vessels, a heart, and pour life into the drawing? A woman can have a child through receiving life from a man. Even if the woman cannot draw or sculpt well, she can have a truly beautiful child who has eyes, a nose, a heart, and everything else if she receives the seed from a man. We cannot make righteousness with our efforts. However, we can have righteousness if we accept it. This is what God did for us. We do not become righteous through our efforts or good deeds, but He has us accept the righteousness of Jesus which was accomplished through a 33-year-long life without a single sin, and a life of righteousness. If we accept the life of Jesus, we are more righteous than anyone because we then have the righteousness of Jesus. He did this whether you are good or bad, have zeal or no zeal, regardless. God did not care whether you were dirty, filthy, evil, or full of lies, but He gave you the righteousness of Jesus. He had Jesus take away all of your sins. He exchanged Jesus for your sins. Jesus, who was without sin, bore your sins and became a sinner. You became righteous through being clothed with the righteousness of Jesus. Jesus is righteous and we are sinners. But through this exchange Jesus became a sinner and we became righteous. As a testament of this, Jesus was crucified on the cross to shed His blood for your sins. When you accept this by faith, the righteousness of Jesus comes upon your heart, and you become righteous. Then it is extremely easy to become righteous.

You Are Righteous if You Have Righteousness

It is not that we have to make righteousness, but we become righteous through receiving the righteousness of Jesus. Because Abraham realized this, he thought that Lot preached the Word of God to the people of Sodom while Lot was there. Abraham thought there would be at least fifty righteous people there. On the contrary, Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed because Sodom did not even have ten righteous people. Someone who has received the righteousness of Jesus is righteous. Who is rich? If someone inherits a lot of wealth from his father, he is rich. Even though you have no money, if you win the lottery and receive $10 million U.S. dollars, you are rich. Whether you made the money or not, you are rich if you have much money. In becoming righteous as well, whether it was you who made it or not, you are righteous if you have righteousness. We become righteous, not through our effort, but through receiving the righteousness of Jesus.

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