Righteousness is the first feature of the kingdom of God. In this post you will learn in a practical way how to seek the kingdom of God with your family and especially how to practice His righteousness.
Moving on with The King of kings series, we will see that seeking the Kingdom of God implies living from an adequate mentality of justice that can only be achieved through faith in Jesus.
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Gold, symbol of royal justice
We saw in the previous post that the Kingdom of God is more about manifesting the glory of the King of kings in a life of genuine faith than reaching something by one’s own effort. In the same way, true justice always flows from the Creator to men as a gift.
The first gift Jesus received was a golden portion. So the wise men who came to visit him prophetically indicated the real purpose of the newborn boy.
And going into the house, they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh.Matthew 2:11
Gold is a metaphor for the durability, excellence and nobility of His justice. This shows us that from the beginning God’s Kingdom is based on righteousness and justice.
As much as you try to produce righteousness with your own hands, you will never succeed. Only in communion with the Creator will you attain true righteousness.
When Adam and Eve first disobeyed God, they realized they were naked, so they gathered fig leaves to cover their private parts. But God helped them by replacing those weak garments with durable ones.
That was the first gift the man received. God killed an animal, shedding blood, to clothe our parents with leather clothing. Note that there is a strong moral and spiritual significance in this gift.
As we have seen with the first couple, we are always ready to solve the problem, to try to work it out with our own hands. It has always been like that.
During Jesus’ ministry, his greatest work was to resist religious who did not accept his teaching, preferring their own efforts to live righteously.
This is so useless and sad in God’s eyes that, seeing a fig tree, Jesus cursed the tree that dried up immediately. The disciples pointed out that it was not a fig season. So the problem was not the lack of fruit on the tree. When Jesus said “May no fruit ever come from you again!” and the fig tree withered at once, he was declaring that he does not want to see anyone ever using fragile materials to cover themselves.
True Justice Is Lived by Faith
What God requires He offers Himself. True righteousness has never been and never will be the result of human behavior no matter how good it may be.
One person can be considered good compared to another person. But the best individual on earth is evil compared to God. Jesus said that we human beings are evil. But the good Father will give the Holy Spirit to those who ask.
If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!Luke 11:13
Ask for justice and the Holy Spirit
Jesus taught about prayer and the importance of receiving the Holy Ghost to live a righteous life. Seeking the kingdom of God includes praying for righteousness and the Holy Spirit in your life.
There are several biblical references to prayer for righteousness. This is a good reason for prayer. Many psalms are supplications for justice. And Jesus also stated that those who hunger and thirst after righteousness will be completely satisfied.
Good and Evil, Right and Wrong
This compromised pursuit of righteousness comes down to a life dedicated to remaining with God, positioning oneself for the right. Only the Holy Spirit can help us in this regard.
We have only knowledge of good and evil. But the Holy Spirit can guide us about right and wrong. There is a big difference here! Good and evil are human references resulting from the fall into sin. True righteousness does not refer to discerning between good and evil, but between right and wrong.
By inviting the Holy Spirit to dwell in you, He will help you live in alignment with God’s way of thinking and choosing what is really right.
The Fruit of Righteousness in Peace
I once heard a colleague say that everyone thinks they are very right. Everyone thinks they have plenty of common sense while others are wrong and foolish.
That’s why it’s so common to be tempted to criticize the people around us. Speaking badly about other people are delicious snacks to the taste. But every time we judge others we make mistakes. The more we criticize a person, the more we focus on details, and the less we see the whole. This is just the opposite of wisdom.
Here’s what the apostle James says, whose letter is considered the New Testament book of proverbs:
And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.James 3:18
Beware of people who like to judge
The fruit of righteousness is sown in peace. This seed does not go well with speaking badly of other people. If someone talk to you about other people, they will surely talk about you to others as well. So be very careful of people who are very critical and depreciate others.
As you learn to gauge people’s attitudes carefully in your thoughts, not to speak ill of them, you discover a much greater perception of who they really are. Seeking the kingdom of God and His righteousness includes trusting in it, being flexible, waiting for its solution rather than trying your own.
At the set time that I appointPsalm 75:2
I will judge with equity.
How your judgment matters
Felix Tabe, who I have the privilege of having as a personal mentor, told me something I will never forget: “Talk about Jesus; don’t talk about people.” This simple phrase has revolutionized my perception of those around me, including my family and friends. I grew up listening to my relatives talk bad about each other. This is totally contrary to God’s justice.
Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes,Isaiah 5:21
and shrewd in their own sight!
Seeking God’s Kingdom and His righteousness includes closing your mouth to commenting on your own judgments about others. You can be sure that whatever you say about another individual others will talk about you soon. This is earthly and useless justice. If you can criticize something in someone’s life, it is because you know well about that subject, because you have it within you as well.
But when you can master your words, you are on the path to God’s wisdom and righteousness. Patience to wait for God’s care, or justice, results in great peace. It is like planting the right seed in the right soil under ideal conditions.
My mouth will tell of your righteous acts,Psalm 71:15
of your deeds of salvation all the day,
for their number is past my knowledge.
Those who seek the kingdom of God and its righteousness do not speak ill of people. Their mouth has another priority, which is to announce what God has done in your own life and family.
Costly Free Justice
Brutally, the apostle Paul says that if our good behavior is enough to reach righteousness, Jesus suffered and died for no purpose. The apostle of faith travels throughout the Law and the prophets to show that there is no other righteousness but trust in the death and resurrection of Jesus.
The apostle Peter, in turn, says that true righteousness is the result of our choice in the face of the Gospel. While the body of Jesus was in the tomb, He went in spirit to preach the gospel to the dead, those who lived before His sacrifice on the cross. No matter how those men lived their days. The decision before the Gospel announced to them matters.
For this is why the gospel was preached even to those who are dead, that though judged in the flesh the way people are, they might live in the spirit the way God does.1Peter 4:6
The early church apostles developed more of what is currently being addressed on this subject because they were prioritizing the kingdom of God and helping others along this way. Once you understand the value of the blood of Jesus, the faithfulness of God’s Word, and the power of the Holy Spirit, you also understand that the only righteousness that prevails is that of faith.
More than gold and high quality leather, the blood of Jesus is the only material that can make you a righteous person before God and people. And only by continually valuing the revelation of God’s Word and His Spirit in your own life will you live daily in the true righteousness of God’s Kingdom.
Therefore, do not insist on trying to live righteously by your own efforts. Just open your heart to receive the Holy Spirit, the presence of Jesus, in your life and in your home. Your whole family will be powerfully blessed with peace and prosperity when you accept by faith all that God has prepared for you.
Prayer: Father, thank you so much for your grace and favor for my life. I recognize my inability to live righteously for myself. I acknowledge and declare that I receive your righteousness by faith in the name of Jesus, Amen.
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