Romans 1:16-17 What is the Gospel? The Righteousness of God Revealed [Part 5]
Last updated: 18 May 2020 16:52
For in it the righteousness of God is revealed
The mark of the earthly ministry of Jesus Christ is not defined necessarily by what He proclaimed nor by what He did. Christ proclaimed the kingdom of God, to be sure, but what was the difference between him and any other self-proclaimed Messiah before and since the life of Christ? And indeed, the miracles and healings he has done might back up His words, but we have seen some of those same miracles and healings in our day and time. What makes Christ so remarkable?
Christ is God, who is with us. He is Immanuel. We know that his testimony and actions are right not only of the life he lived but also the sheer fact that Death could not hold him for longer than three days. Because Christ is righteous and holy and perfection, He could not and cannot suffer the corruption of Death:
Peter quotes Psalm 16:10 about the resurrection of God, our Savior in the Lord Jesus Christ:
Acts 13:32–37 And we bring you the good news that what God promised to the fathers, this he has fulfilled to us their children by raising Jesus, as also it is written in the second Psalm, “ ‘You are my Son, today I have begotten you.’
And as for the fact that he raised him from the dead, no more to return to corruption, he has spoken in this way, “ ‘I will give you the holy and sure blessings of David.’
Therefore he says also in another psalm, “ ‘You will not let your Holy One see corruption.’
For David, after he had served the purpose of God in his own generation, fell asleep and was laid with his fathers and saw corruption, but he whom God raised up did not see corruption.
Psalm 16:10 For you will not abandon my soul to Sheol, or let your holy one see corruption.
Holiness and righteousness and perfection cannot die. When God created life, he never intended death. Death is the opposite of life. Life is everlasting. That is until Sin infected the world and the cosmos. When that happens, Death is now inevitable and for certain.
Because we are each born of Adam, we are born with sin in our nature, and everything we do is tinctured with sin. You cannot escape it. With sin, we will certainly die and face the just wrath of God forever.
His people are failing left and right. He saw our failings and trespasses and, with perfect compassion and mercy, does what only He can do: save their people from their sins.
And not for a short time but forever. Again, holiness would not be holiness unless it was perfect for all time.
This is precisely why we have no righteousness of our own. When we are trusting in our ability to follow the laws of God, we fail. We fail when we disobey one of his laws, and as James says, “For whoever keeps the whole law but fails in one point has become guilty of all of it.” (James 2:10) The prophet Isaiah vehemently and rightfully declares, “We have all become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous deeds are like a polluted garment. We all fade like a leaf, and our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.”(Isaiah 64:6)
But when Christ was revealed, once for all time, the righteousness of God was made for us all in the history of mankind.
John 1:14–18 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John bore witness about him, and cried out, “This was he of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me ranks before me because he was before me.’ ”) For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father’s side, he has made him known.
Because Christ has been revealed, we no longer claim ignorance of the truth of God’s power (Romans 1:18-19) The sons of Adam continuously sin as their original father has done and exchanged righteousness for sin and death. But because Christ revealed himself, and when people receive and believe in his name, he gives us the right to become the children of God (John 1:12-13) for whom He exchanged our sin with his righteousness:
2 Corinthians 5:21 For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.