King of Righteousness (Isaiah 9:6)
"For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forth and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this."
- Isaiah 9:6-7
And so we look at today...
King of Righteousness
We're told in this passage that the Messiah would be establish His Kingdom and would uphold it with "righteousness".
Yesterday, we covered the phrase "with justice," and this is very similar.
To be just means to uphold the law and to be fair.
Even our persontification of "Justice" shows impartiality: "a blindfolded woman holding scales and a sword."
Being "righteous" is very similar, as the dictionary defines it as:
"The quality of being morally right or justifiable."
These concepts, that the Messiah will be perfectly just, impartial, and righteous seem to go directly against what we've already learned about Him in that He would be our "Wonderful Counselor," our "Wonderful Lawyer."
How can someone fight for us guilty sinners
and yet be perfect in upholding the law?
If you've already read the post on how Jesus is our "Wonderful Counselor" then you already know.
But for this post, I want to remind us of another verse that reveals God's plan through His Gospel and the Christmas story.
John begins his gospel with giving us a big picture view of God's redemption plan, and in verse 17 he wrote:
"For the law was given through Moses;
grace and truth came through Jesus Christ."
God is full of paradoxes.
He constantly supprises us.
And that makes sense... He is God after all.
But this phrase is definitely one of the most amazing.
That Jesus, the Messiah, brought us grace and truth.
You see, grace is to "be regarded by someone with favor"
While truth is, "that which is true or in accordance with fact or reality."
Now, if you've been following in this series,
We've covered at length the fact that we are sinful, imperfect, betrayers of God, and deserving of death as our punishment.
That is the truth.
That is the law.
And Jesus fully brought that truth.
He told people throughtout His ministry to "repent for the kingdom of God is near."
Yet, Jesus also brought grace.
He brought us "favor."
How could Jesus bring us both the truth of our sin and also the favor of God?
Only through His mercy and payment for our sins.
The Messiah remains a King Of Righteousness because He pays the price of our sin so that He can pour our His favor on us.
The Law that God brought through Moses is good - in fact it is perfect.
But it can't save us - it merely reminds us of the truth.
That we are guilty.
Jesus didn't do away with this truth,
Otherwise, He wouldn't be perfectly righteous.
Instead, He brought together the most paradoxical phrase.
He brought together two things that seemed impossible...
Grace and Truth.
Mercy and Law.
Favor and Justice.
He paid our debt,
So that we could receieve mercy.
And He remains our King of Righteousness.
So don't downplay the truth,
There's no need to hide from what the truth is.
The truth is...
We're imperfect. (Romans 3:10)
We have problems.
We are sinful.
We deserve nothing good.
In fact, we deserve death. (Romans 6:23)
But because of God's grace, our truth is now...
We are in God's favor. (Isaiah 61:1-2)
We have been brought into God's family. (Ephesians 2:19)
We have new empowerment to live godly lives. (2 Peter 1:3-4)
We have daily hope in Jesus. (1 Peter 1:3-6)
We have eternal hope of heaven with God forever. (John 3:16)
We've been given life. (John 4:14, John 5:24)
So let's not hide from the truth,
but let us pair it with the grace that Jesus brought us.
We are truly guilty, deserving of death.
But Jesus has paid our debt.
And we just have to accept His grace, His payment for our sins, and accept Him as Lord and Savior...
And we get to be reunited with God,
Brought back into His family,
And enjoy His favor.
May you enjoy that favor today,
And may you pass it on to others.
Let's be sure to tell others of our great God
Who upholds justice and righteousness,
Yet loves us and has mercy and favor towards us.