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Righteousness 

Living in right relationship with God and others. Unrighteous behavior would tend to undermine right relationship with God. For example, the disobedience of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden (Gn 3) was unrighteous because it distorted relationship with God. In the OT, righteousness was understood in terms of the demands of God's covenant with Israel. Righteous behavior upheld the covenant relationship. The NT acknowledges human incapacity to fulfill the demands of righteousness. Paul states that "all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" (Rom 3:23). We share by nature in the tendency to turn away from God and the demands of righteousness (see Art. IX, Articles of Religion, BCP, p. 869). But human righteousness is made possible through faith in Christ and participation in Christ's life by the Holy Spirit (see Rom 1:17, 5:5, 9:30). Paul states that "as all die in Adam, so all will be made alive in Christ" (1 Cor 15:22). The "many will be made righteous" by Christ's obedience (Rom 5:19), which enables us to "walk in newness of life" (Rom 6:4). In Christ, we may live in righteousness with God and each other. Christ is the "Sun of Righteousness," as noted by Charles Wesley in "Christ, whose glory fills the skies" (Hymns 6-7 in The Hymnal 1982). 




Glossary definitions provided courtesy of Church Publishing Incorporated, New York, NY,(All Rights reserved) from "An Episcopal Dictionary of the Church, A User Friendly Reference for Episcopalians," Don S. Armentrout and Robert Boak Slocum, editors.
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