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Daily Bread 1-27-18

The Sermon on the mount (cont'd)

Matthew 5:20

For 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.

ref. - Ro 10:3 - For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves to the righteousness of God.

No matter how intelligent, no matter how learned, and no matter how long they had been at it, the scribes and Pharisees were missing out on one point. they didn't understand that the righteousness of God was in Jesus Christ. Today, we can read of the failure of a whole group of men that followed the wrong voices and fell into the wrong way. In the Spirit of God we are given understanding of not only carnal commandment but also the Spiritual transformation. We are shown that if we rely on the teaching and commandments that have been given or reinforced by Jesus Christ that we are heading in the right direction. We will not be seen as holy in many worldly eyes, nor will we be considered as righteous men as we will not be able to stand on our own. We will be the ones who have to depend on Christ around every corner and as we cross every path. There will be many who will try to establish their own rules of righteousness, just as the scribes and Pharisees, but we must not falter and we must not sway. Jesus IS the way, the truth, and the life. This is the righteousness that will exceed the righteousness of them. It is a Spiritual understanding and the righteousness of the Son of God that we will possess. If we look with carnal eyes we will question the extent of our own righteousness and we will fall very short of all of these holy men of the past. They were followers of a set of rules that are too many to number and they knew the scripture and they were educated and they were communicated to by God directly................... All these excuses are examples of our misunderstanding. The righteousness that we have that exceed theirs is the righteousness that we are given in Jesus Christ. This is a righteousness that not only stops the hand from committing the sin, but takes the thought of the sin from the mind as well. It is the passing from a carnal salvation to a Spiritual one. A salvation where our hearts, minds, and souls, have been changed to not contain the elements of sin. We are they who will submit ourselves to the guidance and righteousness of the Son of God and, in turn, the righteousness of God. We can go around trying to please one another and making up rules of advice and not commandment but we will always fall short. Have we not heard the saying,"you can please some of the people some of the time, but never will we please all of the people all of the time." You see, we will never be able to find righteousness in the commandments of men as when we fulfill one , there will be another behind it. What we are offered in Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit is the ability to have these lusts and desires removed from us. Not a slap on the hand when we commit, but the power to refrain from something that is no longer within us or natural to us. To the carnal man this level of service is too grievous and they will go looking for another gospel. But once we have been exposed to the true gospel, it is ours forever. We have choice to follow after or run from it but we also have the responsibility to live with the outcome of our choices. Our righteousness needs to and does exceed that of the scribes and Pharisees in that we serve a living God and truly believe that we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us. We do know to follow his lead and to stay on his path. We know that if we lean unto ourselves we walk out from under his arm and back under the law. We do know that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, came to this earth to show us the way, was hung on a cross as an eternal sacrifice for our sins, and was resurrected on the third day to show us that we can defeat death. He was then taken to sit on the right hand of God our Father, having been given the power over heaven and earth and also the things under the earth. We believe in Jesus Christ, and therefore we have already surpassed all of the intelligence and righteousness of those men who chose to follow their own paths. Today there are still scribes and Pharisees but we are not them. We are blood bought children of the living God and through our Lord Jesus Christ we are part of the kingdom of heaven!!!! Have a great day!!!

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