What’s in a name? (5)
The name Jehovah-Tsidkenu: The Lord our righteousness, was given by God through Jeremiah, announcing the coming of Jesus: ‘I will raise up a righteous descendant from King David’s line…And this will be his name: “The Lord Is Our Righteousness”’ (vv.5-6 NLT). Before Jesus came, our righteousness lay in our own efforts. ‘We will be counted as righteous when we obey all the commands…God has given us’ (Deuteronomy 6:25 NLT). But Jesus changed everything. He is our righteousness. ‘God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God’ (2 Corinthians 5:21 NIV). It’s only in Jesus that we ‘become the righteousness of God’. We don’t need to try harder to feel righteous, or do more good works, or obsessively obey all the commands. We should be aiming to live like Christ, but we don’t need to try and make ourselves righteous. We’ll always fall short, we’re human. But Jesus ensures that in the eyes of God, we don’t fall short. Our guilty hearts can draw forgiveness, our anxious hearts can draw peace, and our weary souls can draw strength from Jehovah-Tsidkenu. We receive salvation by faith alone. And we must draw righteousness, and everything else we need, by faith in what God has accomplished and stored up for our use in Jesus, our righteousness. Paul said: ‘not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ – the righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith’ (Philippians 3:9 NIV). We need to stop striving to become righteous, and instead, devote ourselves to Jesus, our righteousness.
If you’ve been striving to be righteous, spend some time sitting quietly with God and asking Him to give you peace, rest and the reassurance that Jesus is your righteousness.