YOUR RIGHT VS RIGHT ~ Precious Victor Akah
"Dear children, don’t let anyone deceive you about this: When people do what is right, it shows that they are righteous, even as Christ is righteous." 1 John 3:7
Righteousness is aligning yourself with God's Word: keeping God's commands. And what is right is that which is in alignment with God's Word. Thus, whatever is not in alignment with God's Word is wrong and you become guilty of wrongdoing when you engage in that which does not align with the Word of God (with the teachings of the Bible and the commands of God in the Bible).
Whatever is righteous is right, so when you do what is righteous you're doing what is right. And whatever is unrighteous is wrong, so when you're doing what is unrighteous you're doing what is wrong.
Some people try to excuse their wrongdoing by saying they don't know that what they're doing is wrong. Well, when you don't know if something is wrong or right, check if it is righteous (in alignment with God's Word) or unrighteous (not in alignment with God's Word). If it is righteous, then it is right, and if it is unrighteous, then it is wrong. Simple!
For example, you may claim as a Christian woman that wearing revealing and skimpy clothes is not wrong, God looks at the heart. But have you checked if it is a righteous act? Does such act align with God's Word in 1 Timothy 2:9 which says, "And I want women to be modest in their appearance. They should wear decent and appropriate clothing..."? When in doubt as to whether an act is right or wrong, find out if it is a righteous or an unrighteous act.
"Blessed are those who don't feel guilty for doing something they have decided is right." Romans 14:22
You say smoking is not bad as a Christian, yet you feel guilty when doing it. You say drinking and clubbing isn't bad as someone who calls on the Name of Jesus and calls himself/herself a child of God, yet deep down, you feel guilty each time you do it. You believe that sex before marriage is okay, yet anytime you engage in it with the opposite sex, you start battling with guilt and shame.
Well, according to the Scripture above (Romans 14:22), if you're doing something you claim to be right yet feeling guilty when doing it or after doing it (because you know it is not in alignment with the laws of God) you're doing the wrong thing. Tell yourself the truth and put a stop to every unrighteous thing you're doing. Self-justification is not 'God-justification'. You justifying yourself is not God justifying you, and remember, it is only those who are justified by God that can live a successful life on earth and spend eternity in heaven.
One of the ways to know you're doing the right thing is, you'll not feel guilty doing it, your conscience will not smite you nor torment you. But whatever you're doing and feeling guilty, as well as experiencing unending sharp rebuke from your conscience, know that you're doing the wrong thing.
"Blessed are those who act justly, who always do what is right." Psalm 106:3
If you always do what is right, you'll enjoy the blessings of God. Those who do right do not lack the blessings of God, as Psalm 106:3 rightly puts, they are BLESSED.
Lastly, know that not all rights (human rights) are right (morally right). Any right (human right) that is not constructive, that does not benefit everyone, is not right (morally right); it is a violation.
1 Corinthians 10:23-24 NIV says, “I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything”—but not everything is constructive. No one should seek their own good, but the good of others."
You say you have the right to wear whatever you like, even to wear clothes that leaves half of your body (breasts, thighs, belly, back) exposed, as a professing child of God, but is that good for everybody? Not just you. Is it good for the single men and the married men that will look at you when you walk pass them? Is it good for their spiritual well-being, mental well-being, and physical well-being?
The Scripture above (1 Corinthians 10:23-24) says no one should seek their own good but the good of others. If you're truly a child of God, you'll have respect for this instruction from God and live by it.
So when next you want to do something you think you have the personal or human right to do, make sure it is not just good for you alone, but good for others too. When you do that, then you're doing what is right.
God bless you.
ALSO READ: 14 November 2022 - THE ADVANTAGE YOU HAVE AS A CHILD OF GOD