A note from Jake Vaden

People repeat instructions that are the most important. I have two young boys, and one instruction I have repeated countless times is to look both ways before crossing our street. The consequences of not listening to this teaching could have horrific consequences. Which is why I repeat my instructions when I witness them running into the road. We often repeat what we believe is most important.

The series we are currently in, A Different Kind of Happy, is about the beginning of Jesus’ most famous sermon, a section of scripture known as the beatitudes. One theme that Jesus repeats twice in this small introduction is the idea of “righteousness.” He says that people are blessed if they hunger and thirst for righteousness (Matthew 5:6), and later that they are blessed if they are persecuted because of righteousness (Matthew 5:10). When Jesus repeats instructions it should grab our attention.

This year I began reading a Psalm a day. Through this reading I have been bombarded with this idea of righteousness. In the 52 Psalms I have read so far, the word “righteousness” has been mentioned 43 times, and “righteous” 42 times. Daniel did an awesome job in his sermon a few weeks ago on Matthew 5:6. He talked about how the source of our righteousness is Jesus. We are considered righteous not by earning it, but because of Jesus’ love and faithfulness.

Check out what it says here, “Righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe," (Romans 3:22). If I am being honest, I know that I have, and will continue to struggle with, unrighteous behavior. I am thankful that we have a God of mercy, and that Jesus is our source of righteousness.

As we seek Jesus, he continues to change us. My prayer is that as we head into the weekend, we remember this important topic Jesus, and other biblical authors, repeated about righteousness. Stay warm out there!

Jake Vaden

Family Pastor | Hope City Church