Righteousness comes from God. But what should a person walking in the righteousness of God look like? What are the traits and characteristics of the righteous?
Join us as we explore what the Word of God says about those who are righteous and how we can recognize that good fruit…
Characteristics of the Righteous
God is righteous and has characteristics that we, as those who are walking in His righteousness, ought to have. Certainly God is perfect, and though we are able to become more and more like Him… we are all a work in progress. This, however, does not mean that we cannot walk firmly in the righteousness of God or in the characteristics of righteousness.
So, what is associated with righteousness? What are the characteristics of the righteous?
The Word says that these things are connected with the righteous…
One of the things that sets the righteous of God apart from the unrighteous is boldness. It is because they trust in the Lord that they do not fear!
Proverbs 28:1 says of this, “The wicked flee when no one pursues, but the righteous are bold as a lion.”
“…accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord, in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through faith in Him.”—Ephesians 3:11-12
“Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way which He consecrated for us…”—Hebrews 10:19-20
The righteous are generous. They consider the needs of others and help them. They love and walk out that love.
“The righteous considers the cause of the poor, but the wicked does not understand such knowledge.”—Proverbs 29:7
“Open your mouth, judge righteously, and plead the cause of the poor and needy.”—Proverbs 31:9
“Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink?’ …And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’”—Matthew 25:37, 40
The righteous are filled with kindness. They are not cruel but instead, remembering the mercies God has given them, they walk in those mercies.
“Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘…When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’”—Matthew 25:37-40
“And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.”—Ephesians 4:32
“A righteous man regards the life of his animal, but the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel.”—Proverbs 12:10
The righteous do not fear hard work. They know that their rest and reward are in God. Their hands are not idle, and through the righteousness of God, the work of their hands knows success.
“The desire of the lazy man kills him, for his hands refuse to labor. He covets greedily all day long, but the righteous gives and does not spare.”—Proverbs 21:25-26
“The Lord will open to you His good treasure, the heavens, to give the rain to your land in its season, and to bless all the work of your hand. You shall lend to many nations, but you shall not borrow.”—Deuteronomy 28:12
The righteous stand firm. They know they cannot be moved when God is on their side. They know that the wicked will not flourish. They stand firm in their surety of God and His goodness!
“When the wicked are multiplied, transgression increases; but the righteous will see their fall.”—Proverbs 29:16
“For a righteous man may fall seven times and rise again, but the wicked shall fall by calamity.”—Proverbs 24:16
“No grave trouble will overtake the righteous, but the wicked shall be filled with evil.”—Proverbs 12:21
“The hope of the righteous will be gladness, but the expectation of the wicked will perish.”—Proverbs 10:28
The righteous find blessing where the wicked find strife. Prosperity rests steadfastly in the home of the righteous.
“In the house of the righteous there is much treasure, but in the revenue of the wicked is trouble.”—Proverbs 15:6
“The wicked are overthrown and are no more, but the house of the righteous will stand.”—Proverbs 12:7
- NEARNESS TO GOD
The Lord is near the righteous. Anyone who walks in righteousness never need be alone, for the Lord is with them wherever they go.
“The way of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, but He loves him who follows righteousness.”—Proverbs 15:9
“The Lord is far from the wicked, but He hears the prayer of the righteous.”—Proverbs 15:29
“The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.”—Proverbs 18:10
“To do righteousness and justice is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice.”—Proverbs 21:3
“But in every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him.”—Acts 10:35
One of the characteristics of the righteous is that they walk with integrity. Their “yes” is yes, and their “no” is no. Through them, justice is served, and their children are blessed.
“The righteous man walks in his integrity; his children are blessed after him.”—Proverbs 20:7
“It is not good to show partiality to the wicked, or to overthrow the righteous in judgment.”—Proverbs 18:5
“Also, to punish the righteous is not good, nor to strike princes for their uprightness.”—Proverbs 17:26
“He who speaks truth declares righteousness, but a false witness, deceit.”—Proverbs 12:17
“A righteous man hates lying, but a wicked man is loathsome and comes to shame.”—Proverbs 13:5
The righteous find joy in God. They and their family rejoice in the Lord!
“The father of the righteous will greatly rejoice, and he who begets a wise child will delight in him.”—Proverbs 23:24
“The light of the righteous rejoices, but the lamp of the wicked will be put out.”—Proverbs 13:9
- EVERLASTING LIFE
The righteous do not fear death, for they know life in God is theirs forever.
“In the way of righteousness is life, and in its pathway there is no death.”—Proverbs 12:28
“The labor of the righteous leads to life, the wages of the wicked to sin.”—Proverbs 10:16
“When the whirlwind passes by, the wicked is no more, but the righteous has an everlasting foundation.”—Proverbs 10:25
“And these will go away into everlasting punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”—Matthew 25:46
Because the righteous walk in the ways of the Lord, blessings rest upon them and their children.
“He who follows righteousness and mercy finds life, righteousness, and honor.”—Proverbs 21:21
“Blessings are on the head of the righteous, but violence covers the mouth of the wicked.”—Proverbs 10:6
- RIGHT THINKING
The thoughts of the righteous are in tune with God. This thinking is one of the traits of the righteous. Out of their hearts spring up good words that bring life to them and to those around them.
“The thoughts of the righteous are right, but the counsels of the wicked are deceitful.”—Proverbs 12:5
“The mouth of the righteous is a well of life, but violence covers the mouth of the wicked.”—Proverbs 10:11
“The tongue of the righteous is choice silver; the heart of the wicked is worth little.”—Proverbs 10:20
“The lips of the righteous feed many, but fools die for lack of wisdom.”—Proverbs 10:21
“The hypocrite with his mouth destroys his neighbor, but through knowledge the righteous will be delivered.”—Proverbs 11:9
These are only a few of the characteristics of the righteous. None of us in ourselves is righteous, and it cannot be found through works. True righteousness rests in God, and when we invite Him into every aspect of our lives, His righteousness flows in and through us.
Let us therefore stand on the Word of God, praying and meditating on these Scriptures as we believe and receive their promises and truth.
Let us come into agreement that it is in God that we walk in righteousness, and that the reward of the righteous is ours through the Lord!
We are God’s righteous ones, and it is the deep love He possesses for us that permits us to be so.