What is Sin and what is Righteousness?
Is sin defined as adultery, masturbation, stealing and other such vices or are these things the fruit or acts of sin. To flip the question over, is Love, Giving, going to church, reading your bible and praying in tongues the definition of righteousness or are these the acts or fruits of righteousness?
These are pivotal questions that if we answer, will cleanse us of what has been dubbed “sin consciousness”. We should first consider the fact that sin has two different meanings in the OT and NT. In the OT, sin was simply breaking the Law of Moses or breaching the commandments of God. In the NT, Paul defines sin differently. He defines it as anything we do that “…is not from faith; and everything that does not come from faith is sin” (Rom 14:23). This means if you even give millions of Pounds or Euros to God’s work and you speak the tongues of angels and you fast for 365 days in a year, and do all maner of “GOOD” things but you do it without faith and not motivated by love, all that work is useless before God according to 1 Cor 13. In the NT all of that which may have made you righteous in the OT doesnt count if its not motivated by God’s love in us. Please read 1Cor 13 from different versions of the bible when you have some spare time but especially from the amplified because it really amplifies what is acceptable to God and not in the NT. In the absence of faith and love, our best efforts are like filthy rags before God. So if Rom 14:23 and 1Cor 13 are true, then righteousness is not speaking in tongues or praying or doing good stuff. Rather these acts are just the fruit of righteousness as Gal 5 teaches us. Righteousness is much deeper than mere good or holy acts. It is the very nature of GOD (that energizes us to do those good things). If His righteousness energizes us to do them, then its acceptable before Him because out motives were Spirit led and we did them by faith in Him. It would take too much time to explain this furthur but reading Romans 8 can help whoever wants to study this. Likewise sin is not stealing, killing, cursing or doing bad stuff. Rather sin is the nature of the serpent that Eve introduced into the human race when she took in that corruptible seed of the word of the serpent/dragon/satan/devil etc.
Realize this, we (the called out ones who are born of His Word) are not of the Human race. We are a new creation, a new species etc. The seed (sperm) that gave birth to us contains the very DNA or nature of its source which is God, just like the seed of a cow contains the nature of a cow. That is why a cow cannot give birth to a cat. The seed of a cow contains the nature/DNA of a cow. The seed of God contains the nature of God which is righteousness. This is what causes us to love our neighbor as ourselves.
What do seeds symbolize from Jesus’ parables? Seeds according to Jesus in the parable of the sower are words and words according to the same Jesus are spirit and life OR spirit and death (Luke 8:11, John 6:63). We are products of the seeds we ingest. That’s why Jesus called the devil the father of some guys in John 8:44. How did the serpent become a father? Through the seed of his word. That is why it is important what we listen to and what we take into the reproductive chambers of our hearts. How were we born again? By hearing the Word of God and accepting it. Eve took in the words of the serpent and condemned her descendants to death for many millennia because the word she took in was spirit and death. This transpired until Jesus (the seed or Word of God which is spirit and life) came and destroyed sin forever, got planted and gave birth to us John 12:24. Sin was not just beaten. It was annihilated. It never resurrected. The entire NT is a celebration of this victory.
To be quarrelling over sin is to not recognize what transpired on the cross. When Moses shadowed the cross, how did he do it. Let’s listen to Jesus: “And as Moses lifted up the bronze snake on a pole in the wilderness,so the Son of Man must be lifted up” (John 3:14). When I first read this many years ago, I was offended because I did not understand why Jesus was likened to a serpent by Moses. But after seeking the Lord he explained that he created man to live forever but man allowed himself to be stung by death. The sting of death is the sting of the serpent. This is what took place in the garden of Eden. What is this sting that brought death into humanity since the days of Adam and Eve? According to 1Cor 15:56 “The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law” Once man was infected by the venom of the serpent which is sin, he lost eternal life and started to die. From never dying, man started to die at 900 years and it progressed till men are now even dying before they reach puberty. The byproduct of being infected by this venom is not swelling up like when you are bitten by a cobra. NO! The wages of sin is death. That is the byproduct of being infected. How does this death manifest. It manifests through carnal actions such as adultery, murder and all the bad stud of Gal 5. Sin is what makes humanity do evil stuff. The evil stuff is just the smoke coming from the fire. God’s solution was to put out that fire. And that’s exactly what he did. But many people still think the fire is still burning.
To heal humanity of this venom (sin), God commanded Moses to make a brazen serpent statue and hang it upon a pole. Whosoever had previously been bitten by a serpent who looked to the brazen serpent got healed. This is the same in the NT.
The serpent had bitten humanity and humanity was dying. God’s solution for God to perform a holy war upon the serpent to settle this sin issue once and for all. So he performed one of the most majestic, glorious and yet humbly powerful acts ever. Remember Jesus was born of Mary through the Holy Spirit. So Jesus from birth had in Him the nature of God i.e. righteousness. Humanity had the nature of the dragon/serpent i.e. sin. On the cross, he performed a divine exchange where he took our sin upon himself forever and gave us the righteousness of God. In fact, He did not just take our sin which is the venom. HE BECAME SIN. “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God” (2Corinthians 5:21) Born again saints do not have righteousness. They are Righteousness. He became the very symbol of what had been man’s weakness and inability to follow God—sin. Hence spiritually he became the serpent that Moses lifted up. And if only humanity which had been bitten by the serpent would look at Him on the cross, we would be healed. That is why without confession and agreement with what he has done for humanity; there can be no remission of sins. God made him our sin and KILLED it forever on the cross. God forsook him on the cross because he became sin and God will have nothing to do with sin. If you are looking from sin, it does not exist any longer if you are born again because “… through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.”(Romans 8:2). It’s a done deal. We are free. Free people should focus on life and not sin. We have this life in us now. It is who we are. No wonder Apostle John could write 1Jn 3:9 Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin; for his seed remaineth in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.
Someone may argue that then why do people still kill and do bad stuff if sin is done away with? The answer is answered by the scriptures… “my people are destroyed from lack of knowledge. Because you have rejected knowledge, I also reject you as my priests; because you have ignored the law of your God, I also will ignore your children” (Hosea 4:6). Ignorance (lack of knowledge) keeps us from the knowledge of the truth and it’s only the knowledge of the truth that can set us free. If you put a dog chained up for many years, it becomes used to that state and it is accustomed only to move within the circle of its bondage. The day you remove the chain from its neck, it will not run outside its comfort zone or the zone of its former captivity. Though it is physically free, it is mentally still bound. This is the sad story of much of humanity to this day. The battle is in the region of our minds. This is where we must allow the Word of liberty to take root and be established and to displace lies. A lie is anything that is in disagreement with the truth of God’s Word no matter how real it seems to you. Please indulge me with one last story. If one of the princes of the UK for some strange reasons ended up being born in an African village and grew up there estranged from the royal family and never knowing his roots, how would he behave? The answer is just like the other villagers. When the Queen of England sends messengers to free him and bring him to England to live as a prince, how will he behave? I submit to you that it will take time, patience, new knowledge(truth) and wisdom for him to embrace his freedom and what freedom truly means. If he truly apprehends the responsibility that comes with freedom, he will rule with such nobility, class and influence BUT if he misunderstands the responsibility that comes with freedom, he will end up making a shipwreck of his freedom by recklessly over indulging in his new found wealth. He may marry a thousand women and drink schnapps from morning till night. But is this the purpose of his new found freedom and wealth? NO. It has a greater purpose but his light I small. He needs greater light. His misbehavior does not mean freedom is bad. It simple means he did not understand the reason for his liberty. The wisdom of God is moderation and spirit directed purpose. We are free but it does not mean we walk around misbehaving purposelessly. That is waste of resources and according Jesus own parables, he is not pleased with waste of any resource including our very lives. We must study the Word and exhibit a higher nature, a higher life that is full of the reign of His Word and responsible for the gift of liberty bestowed on us. In the words of the bible, let us not belittle the grace of God, instead, let us take advantage of it and live lives worthy of sons of God who carry his nature and name. Let’s develop a righteousness consciousness and throw away a sin consciousness. If we operate by love, we will automatically end up doing the will of God because we will not let our actions harm others.
Sin is no longer your master, for you no longer live under the requirements of the law. Instead, you live under the freedom of God’s grace (Rom 6:4)
This is God did not give us in the NT another set of 10 or 300 commandments. He just gave us two which summarize the entire scriptures. If we adhere to it, it’s stronger than any number of commandments and will keep us on the path of righteousness.
37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’[a] 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[b] 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” Matt 22:37-40