February 15


" 'The days are coming,' declares the Lord, 'when I will raise up to David a righteous Branch, a King who will reign wisely and do what is just and right in the land' " (Jeremiah 23:5, NIV).

The portrait of Jesus as the "righteous Branch" appears repeatedly in the messianic prophecies of Isaiah and Jeremiah. This title clearly applies to Jesus as the true Messiah whose reign would be characterized by righteousness. In His role as the righteous Branch, Christ came to vindicate and confirm God's covenant promise to restore all things and reign in righteousness.

During His earthly ministry, Christ inaugurated the kingdom of grace as a precursor to the kingdom of glory. The reign of righteousness in human hearts is the prelude to the final restoration of all things in the kingdom of glory. Both the kingdom of grace and the kingdom of glory are founded and grounded in the righteousness of Christ (see Romans 5:21).

Christ, the righteous Branch, came to impute and impart His righteousness to those who accept Him as Saviour and Lord. Through Him, the "free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life" (Romans 5:18, NKJV). Through His righteousness, we are qualified to become permanent citizens of the righteous kingdom of which Jesus Christ is king forever.

In preparation for the coming reign of everlasting righteousness, "we must have Christ's righteousness as our credentials... In order that we may have the righteousness of Christ, we need daily to be transformed by the influence of the spirit, to be a partaker of the divine nature."--Review and Herald, November 1, 1892.

My Prayer Today: Lord, by faith, I claim the righteousness of Christ. May His righteousness overshadow me today. Amen.