One of the most amazing requirements God has placed upon us is that we be righteous, fully conforming to His ethical and moral standards: “Seek first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you,” Matthew 6:33. Since God is righteous, He cannot allow sin in His presence.
We were born sinful, so we cannot be righteous in our natural state. God’s righteous demand, along with our utter inability to be righteous, could present an insoluble dilemma. However, God graciously solved this problem by sending His only Son, Jesus, who never sinned to die as the sacrificial Lamb for all mankind. Christ became the fulfillment of all sacrifices offered to God through faith under the Old Testament and New Testament.
When we are saved by faith in Christ, God makes us righteous as we become perfected through obedience to His word and the direction of the Holy Spirit. “For he hath made him to be sin (or sin offering) for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him,” 2 Corinthians 5:21. The Bible refers to this righteousness as ‘imputed righteousness.’ “Even as David also describe the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputed righteousness without works,” Romans 4:6. It indicates that God credits the righteousness of Christ to our spiritual account. Just as though He were a banker adding an undeserved deposit. The Scripture urges all men to trust Jesus as savior and be reckoned by God. “But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead,” Romans 4:24. Sadly to say, people refuse to believe that such a blessing can be theirs as a free gift from God.
Every person would love to be found righteous at the Judgment, but many consider the price too high. The cost of denying self appears to require too much. “Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leads unto life, and few there we find in it,” Matthew 7:14. This can only be acquired by faith. Are you clothed in the righteousness of Christ Jesus?