Romans 5:17 “For if by one man’s offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.”
For many of us, as Christmas day gets closer, our anticipation grows with each day, especially for those who are in a position to give gifts. We look forward to seeing little faces light up in awe. We desire to see friends and loved ones scream with excitement or have their eyes get big as we surprise them with the gift they needed or desired.
As I began to meditate this week on what Christmas means to me, I was given the opportunity to share the following truths with someone:
(1) The prayers of the righteous avail much. (James 5:16)
In sum, the prayers of a righteous person are powerful and effective because of his/her “right standing” with God.
(2) We are the righteousness in God, through Christ (Philippians 3:9)
We are in right standing with God, through the work that Christ did on the cross.
You see, through Jesus Christ, God brought a turn-around to mankind’s sinful situation, not only by restoring man’s righteousness but also by establishing it on a permanent basis. Yes, beloved, our righteousness is irrevocable because it’s not based on what we did or do; it’s based on the gift of righteousness given to us through Jesus.
However, the thing that I really want you to see is God’s desire to get this gift to you. As I mentioned at the opening of this message, many of us are excited about giving our gifts to others. But the bible tells us that God desires to give gifts as well. As Matthew 7:11 tells us, “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?”
Can any of us fathom God’s excitement about giving us the gift of righteousness? Could you see Him preparing a way to come to Him at all times without apprehension or inhibition? Could you image Him providing a means in which we could pray every day knowing that our prayers have the weight they should have?
As a father who desires to give gifts, I can see a loving smile etched of God’s face as He prepared this gift for us. I could see the thoughtfulness behind the gift because it was sorely needed by mankind. And I could see the preparation of the gift because of its lasting quality: it neither fades nor fails, dissolves nor dwindles. Its use lasts a lifetime and its attainment takes us into eternity. By possessing it, we secure every victory and seal our destiny. Now, if you were excited about wrapping your gift, just imagine the Father’s excitement as He prepared His gift of righteousness for you.