Light always trumps darkness. Switch on a light in a dark room and the darkness is driven away. Strike a match on a moonless night and the gloom dissipates. Darkness is less of a thing than it is the absence of a thing. Darkness is the absence of light. So it is with evil and righteousness. Evil is the absence of righteousness. It is a void. When righteousness floods in, evil can no longer exist. It implodes, it gives way. It has no choice. Evil exists only while righteousness does not take its rightful place.
Man gave up his place in the garden of Eden. He had been appointed master over all creation, subject only to God. He was righteousness made flesh. The Bible speaks about God making man in His image, according to His likeness. What does this mean? Does it speak about man having the same physical form as God? No. God is spirit. He is not confined to a shape or form. Does this speak about man having the same power as God? No. Man is not omniscient, omnipresent or omnipotent like God. And so, to what does it refer? Many things most certainly, yet among all these things I would like to focus on one, namely: His righteousness. If God is complete, utter and absolute righteousness (which He is, most certainly) then man was created to be righteousness in fleshly form. God took His own holiness and dressed it up in organic matter. Man is righteousness made flesh. God took righteousness and wrapped it in a vessel of soil. Soil became flesh, righteous spirit and perfect flesh together became man. What a stunning picture! Yet, we know the story, so explicitly detailed in the third chapter of Genesis. Man lost it all. When Adam and Eve sinned, the devil became their master and consequently, master over all they had been given. Because righteousness retreated, evil invaded.
What now, dear friend? I have good news, the very best. Righteousness is back on the march! The invasion began when Jesus became flesh. For the first time since Adam, a man walked this earth who had no sin in him. The devil tempted but to no avail. Our Lord was pure righteousness and this time, righteousness would not bend the knee. What were the results of this? Evil had to give way. No demon could defy Jesus. No sickness could refuse His command to flee. Righteousness had stepped back into this world and evil was petrified. I get so excited when I think about this. Yet, Jesus no longer walks the earth. He is seated at the right hand of the Father. And so, how does all this relate to us?
In short, all who accept Jesus as Lord and Saviour become His righteousness! “For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him” (2 Corinthians 5:21). In 1 John 4:17 we read that as He is, so are we in this world. Yes indeed, just like Jesus, when we appear on the scene, evil has to turn and flee. Everything that finds its roots in the devil must die: whether this be sin, sickness or oppression. Darkness must flee before us. Darkness must run and hide as we advance. After all, we are His righteousness. This is wonderfully exciting! Jesus declared in John 20:21 that as the Father sent Him, He also sends us. We are to be Jesus men and Jesus women. We walk in the same righteousness that He did. As darkness could not stand its ground before Him, neither can it stand before us. Let this revelation settle within your heart, dear believer. Understand what it means to be His righteousness. It means that sin, bondage and sickness can find no place in you. It means that when you share the Gospel with others or pray for people in His name, those words you speak and those prayers you pray are saturated with all the righteous power of heaven, the sort of power that darkness cannot withstand.
My team and I see proof of this on every one of our Gospel Crusades. We have recently returned from Hosaena, Ethiopia and there, a precious man who had sold his soul to the devil (never marrying or having children but rather committing himself fully to witchcraft) surrendered himself to Jesus and became a child of God. He had come to cause mischief, he said, equipped with animal bones, teeth and charms, the tools of his malevolent trade. However, when he walked onto the crusade field, he was so overwhelmed by the power of God that he was rendered helpless. And so, hearing the Gospel, he said “Yes!” to Jesus. My team and I were not even aware of his presence until he came and testified. We were preaching and praying with abundant joy and relentless energy, saturated with the righteousness of God. No evil could touch us. Rather, evil we were not even aware was present bowed its knee and the man being tormented by it was gloriously set free. How fantastic!
And so, be bold and brave, dear friend. You are His righteousness. You are Him in this world. I find it interesting how Jesus declared Himself to be the “light of the world” in John 8:12 but declared us also to be such in Matthew 5:14: “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden.” Yes indeed, He has saturated us with His light (that supreme righteousness from on High) and consequently, made lights out of us. As we move forward, darkness retreats. This is a simple yet marvellous truth. So, take ground. Share Him with others. Tell of His victory over sin and death. Speak of mankind being able to share in the same, if they would only accept Him. Pray in His name. Then, watch as lives are eternally changed. Watch as darkness bends the knee!