Jesus said you must be
righteous in order to enter heaven:
20For I say unto you, That except your righteousness
shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no
case enter into the kingdom of heaven.
Now the first thing that
comes into many peoples minds is “How can I be this righteous?” I do hope at
least that you are thinking this. It should be our desire to be righteous and
not to simply take the easy way out and say “I don’t have to have a personal
righteousness because Jesus died for my sins.”
When God speaks of the
righteous He is not just talking about the forgiven. He is speaking of those
who are upright before Him. Let me make it clear that you can not be righteous
without the forgiveness of God! At the same time you can not be forgiven and
To be righteous you must
47Wherefore I say unto thee, Her sins, which are many,
are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same
You can not be forgiven of
your sins and saved from the death of the lake of fire without loving Jesus who
saved you! If you can honestly say that you don’t love God then you must have
never met Him! Because when I see the great power of God that reached down from
heaven to save me I can’t help but love Him!
But you see we forgot what
love is. Because of that we have forgotten many other biblical truths. We don’t
remember that God does not tolerate sin. We don’t remember that God has said
“If you love me, keep my commandments.” We forget that without love we can not
be more righteous than the scribes and Pharisees.
That’s right, you can not be
righteous without love. Because what is righteousness? The very word means
being upright. How can we do that? There are so many laws in the bible. Many of
us don’t even know each one. How can we uphold the law without knowing every
drop of it?
How do we know sometimes
what is right and what is wrong? Are there really gray areas? Is it possible
for us to even be righteous by following the letter of the law? I am going to
tell you now what the law of righteousness is.
31But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, hath
not attained to the law of righteousness. 32Wherefore?
Because they sought it not by faith, but as it were by the works of the law.
For they stumbled at that stumbling stone;
Israel thought that being righteous meant they must follow the letter of the
law. But God said the letter of the law kills. So there is no way we can follow
the letter of the law and be righteous. But what did Jesus say? “I came to
establish the law.”
How did He do that? It was
against the letter of the law to work on the Sabbath. Yet He healed someone on
that day. Did He break the law? In no way did He break the law, because the law
said Love God and Love your neighbor. This part of the law (to love) comes
before every other word.
30And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy
heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength:
this is the first commandment. 31And the second is like,
namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other
commandment greater than these. 32And the scribe said
unto him, Well, Master, thou hast said the truth: for there is one God; and
there is none other but he: 33And to love him with all
the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the soul, and with all
the strength, and to love his neighbour as himself, is more than all whole
burnt offerings and sacrifices. 34And when Jesus saw
that he answered discreetly, he said unto him, Thou art not far from the kingdom of God.
And no man after that durst ask him any question.
Every word in the law hangs on the word
love. If you want to be upright then you MUST LOVE! Even if you don’t know how
to judge a matter and sometimes you won’t know what you should do…but if you
know how to love you will always be able to do what is right.