What about Righteousness!
aymon de albatrus
"When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice; but when the wicked rule, the people mourn." (Pro 29:2)
"When it goes well with the righteous, the city rejoices, and when the wicked perish there are shouts of gladness." (Pro 11:10)
When the godly righteous are in authority, and have the exercise of civil government and the execution of the laws in their hands; for the protection of good men in their civil and religious privileges, and for the punishment of evil men; for the encouraging of all that is good, and for the discouraging of everything that is bad then the people rejoice. Any nation is happy under such an administration because of the public good, as everyone feels and enjoys the advantages of it.
But when the wicked or ungodly are ruling, the people mourn; or "groan", under their tyranny and oppression, and because of the sad state of things; the number of good men is lessened, being cut off into silence, or obliged to flee. Under wicked men, wickedness is encouraged and promoted; heavy taxes are laid upon the people, and exorbitant demands made and cruelty, injustice, and arbitrary power exercised; and no man’s person and property is safe.
In the Western world most nations are under a "democratic" system of division between Church and State. The State is definitely always secular; it has an ungodly structure, with a dearth of believers in it, if any. This means that every single law passed by these legislators is ungodly, for ungodly men produce it. Scripture says that when the wicked rule, the people suffer. It is interesting (and sad) to note the general brainwashing in our society, for even the godly people (believers) hold ‘democracy’ very near to their hearts and defend it with aggressive determination. Methinks it is a case of: Tilt, Tilt, Tilt.
Democracy is not totally a bad thing, and it is the best attempt, so far, of man wanting to rule himself. The famous preacher, Martyn Lloyd Jones has defined democracy as "the latest failure in human government". Indeed, democracy has ruined us Spiritually and taken away the male headship.
The word "Democracy" comes from the Greek:
DEMOS = People and KRATIS = Government.
That is to say: "Government of the People", especially rule of the majority.
Or more fully stated: "Democracy is a system of government of the people, by the people and for the people", as President Lincoln, stated in his famous speech at Gettysburg. That is: "Rights of the people, the Voice of the people, the Ballot of the people, Control of the people", in other words; people are Sovereign, not God.
God is truly absent in all this; therefore, Democracy is not Scriptural, and nowhere righteousness is ever mentioned in its tenets. Indeed, godless democratic Europe, has removed from its proposed Constitution any reference to God and godly things and also makes purposefully no reference to its Christian foundation, it is a Pagan democratic charter.
Democracy, by its own nature, promotes ungodly people to rule the nation and we can see the fruits these profane men have produced: open abortion, feminism, divorce, rampant homosexuality, anti Christian laws, destruction of the family, strange ‘marriages’ and a host of other evil practices, all endorsed and approved and imposed by law issued by wicked men, and all these laws are contrary to God’s Laws. And yet, we Christian vehemently defend the democratic concept. [articles]
Therefore it cannot be said that our present Democracy promotes righteous people to govern the nations, just look around; to be sure most people do not even know what "righteousness" means. Indeed with the Psalmist we cry: "Deliver me, O my God, out of the hand of the wicked, out of the hand of the unrighteous and cruel man." (Psa 71:4)
But to continue, the definition of Righteousness is the quality of rightness or justice. It is an attribute of God. As far as man is concerned, as a direct result of Original Sin and the Fall of Adam, his progeny is corrupt and lacking in righteousness (Rom 3:23) and is also incapable of making himself righteous (Rom 3:19,20).
However, praise God, the Elect are declared by Him righteous through the imputed righteousness of Jesus Christ and declared Justified. Then follows the process of Sanctification whereby the saints are progressively made righteous in character and conduct (1 John 1:7-9).
The Hebrew word, translated "righteous" or "just" in English, is saddiq and meaning "straight" or "right." The corresponding Greek term is dikaios, and in Greek society referred to that which is in accordance with law or social norm. The verbs sadak (saddiq) and dikaioo (dikaios) mean "to do justice," "to be just," "to vindicate," or "to justify" in the forensic sense of "declare righteous" or "treat as just." Thus Christians are declared "just and righteous" in the forensic sense.
Forensic is a legal term meaning an EDICT, a law, ordinance or a declaration ordained by a sovereign (in this case God) by which He forbids or commands an action or situation over His creation. It is not an argumentation but a DECLARATION without appeal. Satan cannot put forward arguments against the saints about their sins (past, present and future), because God has declared them holy, Christ having atoned all their sins: "……… If God be for us, who can be against us?" (Rom 8:31)
If we were to be measured by the standard of God’s tenets of righteousness, we would be faced with terror and despair and condemned for sure: "If you, LORD, should mark iniquities, who could stand?" (Psa 130:3), for as Paul states: "There is none righteous, no, not one...." (Rom 3:10).
The Bible speaks about our sins being washed, cleansed, healed, and blotted out. Our sins, which are scarlet, will become white as snow, the crimson will become like wool white, in God's sight. The sins will be cast into the sea of forgetfulness or purged with hyssop and expiated by the atoning work of Christ removing our guilt, and we shall be free of what is due: "Blessed is the man to whom the LORD shall not impute sin" (Romans 4:8), indeed truly free: "If the Son therefore shall make you free, you shall be free indeed." (Joh 8:36)
In the redemptive forgiveness God does not charge us with what we owe. He does not count our sins against us. If he did, no one (except Jesus) would ever escape His just wrath. No one but Christ would be able to stand before God's judgment, apart from the grace of justification, we all would be sent to hell, deservedly.
So how can Christians be considered "righteous"? Because God has declared His elect righteous before time began by having called them to Himself long before they were born: "According as he has chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love" (Eph 1:4). We must remember that God does not live in time, as we do, but in an eternal Now, thus the beginning and the end are for Him the same ‘time’. When He elected us, he declared our righteousness right there, even though we had to be born many eons later and live a certain time before we became aware of His calling in our life.
The act of being "born again" (Joh 3:3) does not occur when we became aware of the fact, but has already occurred when we were elected, that is: "before the foundation of the world".
Therefore, forensically, we were always "legally" righteous in the eyes of the Lord, for it was Him that elected us before the beginning of time.
There is a thought in the Evangelical pietistic circles that says that Christians should not be involved in government. They base their stance on this verse: "No man that wars entangles himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who has chosen him to be a soldier." (2Ti 2:4) This verse is very similar to that famous saying (also by Paul and often stated wrongly): "Money is the root of all evil". Is it like that? NO, most people quote it incorrectly saying that money is "dirty" and evil", but the correct verse says: "For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows." (1Ti 6:10). It is the LOVE of money that is the problem, not the money.
You see; it is not the money that is evil, But the LOVE of money that is the cause of ‘all evils’. Similarly it is not the involvement with political affairs that is evil, but the ‘entanglement’ (love) thereof is. A guiding principle for us is: "How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?" (Rom 10:14) Politics should be seen by us as a Missionary field, not as a career in power, that should not be our concern, for we are not of this world and there is nothing here that we covet, but the salvation of souls should be and that the Lord’s salt and light be applied and displayed even in the corridors of earthly power, as in every other place.
Our presence in Parliament would bring righteousness, which in turn will limit unbelievers when promulgating laws, and thus we may live more just and peaceful lives, and not under barbaric anti God laws. Indeed, the Christian presence in the halls of Satan is a very needed godly authority to limit the evil of the place and we should not shun away and hide our heads under the sand. Such action has always failed: "For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind." (2Ti 1:7)
Let us look at our reference verse: "When the righteous are in authority", what does it mean? Surely it means righteous people (us) in government making decisions for the nation. And what is the result "the people rejoice" this includes all the people, but if we are NOT there the wicked will rule (by default), and the results: "but when the wicked rule, the people mourn".
A reflection: "what is the point of being righteous on this earth if we keep our righteousness under a bushel?" No use whatsoever. Surely we are to apply what the Lord has granted us directly to this lost world, right there where it is needed most, i.e. the political environment.
ONLY God has righteousness in Himself as an attribute of God's being, which He gracefully bestow on His people, created in His image.
Righteousness is that attribute by which God's essence is seen to be the eternally perfect standard of what is right. It is closely related to God's holiness (or moral perfection), on one hand, and to God's moral law or will as an expression of his holiness, on the other hand. His justice with respect to moral creatures is expressed in the punishment of sin or disobedience (retributive justice; Joh 3:36) and the rewarding of good or obedience (remunerative justice; Rom 2:5-11). In the cross God satisfies the demands of His own justice against our sin, so that by Christ's redemptive act God's "holy love" is seen as both the supreme expression of retributive justice and the supreme expression of forgiving grace.
Concerning mankind, human righteousness can be considered as follows
Original righteousness. God made man upright or morally good (Ecc 7:29; Gen 1:31) however man, by Adam, fell from this righteous state into a state of sin
Since Adam's fall Christ is the only human being who has perfectly fulfilled God's moral law and maintained a righteous nature (Mat 5:17; Joh 8:29,46; Heb 4:15; 1Pe 2:22). Christ is the God/man, his righteousness is of infinite value, affording salvation for all His people as it is imputed on them
Imputed righteousness (justification) is that step in salvation in which God declares the believer righteous as a forensic act
Having been declared righteous, the believer grows, by the Holy Spirit, in the likeness of Christ (being renewed in the image of God) and becomes righteous in actual moral character, i.e., he becomes sanctified. Sanctification is progressive and not complete in this earthly life.
The impossibility for man of gaining a righteousness by works leaves only the possibility of obtaining a righteousness that is independent of all human effort, but by "the righteousness of God" (Rom 1:17; 3:5; 3:21-22; 3:25-26; 10:3; 2Co 5:21; Phi 3:9), thus the righteousness possessed by human beings originated within God and it is imputed to His people as a gift of love.
Righteousness means [right doing], in other words, doing things right, i.e. just
Only God has righteousness in Himself, only He is right and just, He sets the Standards and they are JUST and HOLY. All human beings lack righteousness, which is the status of having met all of God's ethical requirements for human beings. All having failed, (Rom 3:10) the result is that they are under the wrath of God. Apart His Grace
But praise our Lord, because by a statement (forensic act) God declared His people righteous by imputing on them salvation gained by the finished work of Christ on the cross, obtainable by Faith. But faith is a gift of God (Heb 2:8), being the result of divine election (2Th 2:13); no human being can confess Jesus is Lord without the Spirit (1Co 12:3). If faith is a gift of God, then it cannot be had by meritorious human works
However, Righteous man (redeemed) is required to perform works worthy of his calling (Jam 2:15-17; Eph 2:10) and avoid sins Jam 2:11-12
The righteousness of God is to be demonstrated and applied by His people on all levels of life on this earth
No form of human government is righteous, by definition
It is necessary that righteous man be present in the corridors of power to restrain wicked men making evil laws, so that perchance someone may be saved and that we may also live a peaceful life under reasonably good laws.