The Text

Matthew 1:18-20 (CSB) The birth of Jesus Christ came about this way: After his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, it was discovered before they came together that she was pregnant from the Holy Spirit. So her husband, Joseph, being a righteous man, and not wanting to disgrace her publicly, decided to divorce her secretly.

But after he had considered these things, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, don’t be afraid to take Mary as your wife, because what has been conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit.

The Devotion

So her husband, Joseph, being a righteous man, and not wanting to disgrace her publicly, decided to divorce her secretly.

Christ is our Righteousness: We Have Failed in Keeping the Law

James 2:10 (CSB) For whoever keeps the entire law, and yet stumbles at one point, is guilty of breaking it all.

But the law was never intended to save us

Romans 8:1-4 (CSB) Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus, because the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do since it was weakened by the flesh, God did. He condemned sin in the flesh by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh as a sin offering, in order that the law’s requirement would be fulfilled in us who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.

Christ is our Righteousness: God Came to Fulfill the Law

The law was holy and just. It always examines us and shows just how far we really we are from God

Matthew 5:17-20 (CSB) “Don’t think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to abolish but to fulfill. For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or one stroke of a letter will pass away from the law until all things are accomplished. Therefore, whoever breaks one of the least of these commands and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven. But whoever does and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I tell you, unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never get into the kingdom of heaven.

Romans 3:23 (CSB) or all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God;

Christ is our Righteousness: Christ was born to be our righteousness

Romans 3:21-24 (CSB) But now, apart from the law, the righteousness of God has been revealed, attested by the Law and the Prophets. The righteousness of God is through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe, since there is no distinction. For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God; they are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.

In other words…

2 Corinthians 5:21 (CSB) He made the one who did not know sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.