The work of righteousness will be peace, And the effect of righteousness, quietness and assurance forever (Isaiah 32:17).
Guilt is one of the main de-motivators of human personality. A person consumed with guilt feels trapped in their own weakness, and to him or her life seems hopeless. Their weaknesses become like a ball and chain that holds them back from progress. They feel hopelessly bound to repeat failure after failure. And after a period of time, a person consumed with guilt will throw up their hands in frustration and quit trying to improve.
I was a person consumed with a conscience working in overdrive before Jesus rescued me. Bound by my weakness, I saw no escape from the chain of guilt that doomed me to repeat past failures.
The day before my life was radically changed, a friend told me that God was not mad at me because of my past. That He was not holding my sin against me. That was the beginning of my being set free from the bondage of sin.
Being secure in the righteousness of God brings a peace that works from the inside out. Every believer must school himself in this gift of righteousness bequeathed to him or her by the sacrifice of Christ. When the enemy accuses, let your right standing with God be your guard!
Righteousness is the ability to stand before God as though sin, condemnation and inferiority had never been a part of your life. Just like a newborn baby, it is as though you never had a past.
Righteousness has two phases. In phase one, Jesus bears the liability for your sin. He was made to be sin for us, who knew no sin, that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him (2 Corinthians 5:21). All of your past was borne by Jesus, and He completely paid your sin penalty. No sin is judged twice, so you get to go free since your penalty is already paid!
The next phase is exciting. Not only are we released from the liability of sin, but it is also expunged! It is as though we never committed the deed! And God gives you as a free gift the same status before Him that Jesus has. You become the righteousness of God in Him! When God looks at you, He sees you as clean and as pure as His own Son! This is incredible!
Now you have the responsibility to walk in self-judgment. That is, when you sin, you judge it. That’s done by confessing it before the Father (1 John 1:9), and asking for His ability to overcome the weakness of the flesh. As you walk in this self-judgment of personal sins committed, Jesus’ blood continually cleanses you from unrighteousness. As you do this day after day, a righteousness consciousness begins to bring peace to your whole being from the inside out! Jesus becomes your personal lawyer before the Father, and He’s never lost a case!
And their sins and lawless deeds I will remember no more (Heb. 10:17). I, even I am He who blots out your transgression for mine own sake, and will not remember your sins (Isaiah 43:25). As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us (Psalm 103:12). If any man sin, we have an advocate with the Fahter, Jesus Christ the righteous (1 John 2:2).