BENEFITS OF BEING RIGHTEOUS
"Surely he will never be shaken; a righteous man will be remembered forever. He will have no fear of bad news; his heart is steadfast, trusting in the Lord" (Psalm 112:6-7 NIV).
More and more people are becoming religious especially in this part of the world. However, it is becoming more difficult to find righteous people who really fear God in his day-to-day activities. In spite of this fact, the writer of Psalm 112 enumerated some of the benefits that a righteous man would enjoy.
Who is a righteous man? Firstly, a righteous man is a person that is uncompromising. He is principled and is known for what he stands for. He is indeed purpose-driven. Secondly, a righteous man is a person that is upright and just in his dealings. While he may not necessarily be blameless, he must be trustworthy and of good reputation. Thirdly, a righteous man is a person that is in right standing with God. He must be somebody into whom God has imputed His righteousness in Jesus Christ and he is living in a way that is pleasing to God.
Building on the end of the previous psalm, the writer of Psalm 112, in verse one, said that one who fears the LORD and delights in His Law is blessed. Five blessings or benefits that come to one who is righteous and fears God are enumerated: Firstly, the righteous is blessed with physical and material prosperity because God is righteous (verses 2-3). Secondly, light is given even in darkness for the righteous (verse 4). This could refer to success (in place of failure) or to discernment. Thirdly, the righteous receives goodness in return for being generous and just (verses 5 and 9). Fourthly, he will be firmly established in his faith, and unshakable with no fear of what man might do to him (verses 6-8). In fact, the righteous' memory will be eternal and blessed (cf. Proverbs 10:7). Fifthly, because the righteous gives generously and is just in his affairs (verses 5 and 9), he will be made strong and honourable by the LORD.
Undoubtedly, everyone would want to enjoy all of these benefits. However, how many people are ready to be righteous and genuinely fear God? How many people are uncompromising, upright and are in right standing with God? It may seem as if it does not pay to be righteous in this present-day society, but it really pays to be righteous and genuinely fear God.
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).