Righteousness is all over the Bible, from beginning to end, so it must be important. In the Old Testament it describes God and the few who took what God said seriously. In the New Testament we are told to pursue it...over and over and over. But what exactly does that mean and how do we do it?
Righteousness simply put means, "adhering to moral principles" and that is simply put.
God wants us to be like him but he knows that we can't so he fixed the problem when Jesus died for us on the cross.
Now the bridge is built and we have full access to God and the things of God, including his characteristics.
When we don't know God we don't want the things of him, usually. Then there's a part of people who are intrigued by God and wonder why Christians seem like they follow a lot of rules.
The rules thing always left a sour taste in my mouth.
I didn't want a religion of rules.
But then I got to know who Jesus was and I fell in love with him.
Then his spirit (which is alive) came into me and changed me.
Now my mind thinks differently
and my motives are different
and my desires are different.
When you fall in love, you want to be pleasing to that person and show how much you love them.
If they say don't make out with other people, you don't.
When you see how much they love you and they care about you and they warn you what will happen if you do what you're thinking about doing, you have the upper hand to make a good decision BUT the decision is still yours.
God and Jesus (one and the same) tell us to be righteous.
He tells us what is pleasing to him and what isn't.
I am in love so I want to please him.
When I decide that on my own free will then the spirit gets involved and empowers me to make righteous choices.
Righteousness is not rooted in rules, it is rooted in love and freedom.
Righteousness always leads to blessing.
God wants us to be righteous and provides a way for us to be righteous because he knows what is best for us AND he wants to reveal himself to the world through us.
It's easy to tell the difference between a righteous person and an unrighteous person.
So keep your appetite up for righteousness.
"Flee from evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart."
2 Timothy 2:22
"But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness and all these things will be given to you as well (everyday material needs)."