For the month of May, we’ll take a brief look at 31 wise sayings from Proverbs 11, that’s one proverb a day…
Genuine righteousness leads to life, but pursuing evil leads to death.Proverbs 11:19, Christian Standard Bible
This proverb is an Old Testament version of Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” It is a gospel statement, pointing forward to what Jesus would ultimately bring.
Sin leads to death. That is the reality as old as Eden, where God warned Adam and Eve of impending death if they disobeyed his command to not eat from the one forbidden tree (when they had countless to freely enjoy).
Yet, genuine righteousness is not something we can provide for ourselves. With the stain of sin and rebel hearts, even our best deeds are tainted (Isaiah 64:6). We need righteousness as a gift.
That is what we gain only by faith in Jesus. Our sin was nailed to the cross in him and his perfect goodness and obedience, his righteousness, is given to us (2 Corinthians 5:21). This is the great exchange, the good news of faith. Jesus took what we deserved to give us what we did not–a genuine righteousness that leads to life.