An Expositional Sermon
Don’t listen to all the self-help gurus out there. You don’t have the stuff in yourself to be justified before God, but God does. Go to him. We don’t have righteousness in and of ourselves, but God does. And this is the first thing that can satisfy us in our trials. This is the ground of the rest of the points – justification; being found as righteous before God, because by faith in God he gives His people His righteousness as a gift. So if you’re here and you’re not a Christian, first, know that you are a sinner. You don’t deserve God’s grace, and there’s no amount of good things you can do to earn God’s favor. Second, admit that you aren’t righteous, and plead with God to provide a righteousness that would make us you to Him. Third, put your hope in the only way that anyone can be justified before God, faith alone in the death and resurrection of Christ alone, and turning from finding satisfaction in your sin. Our hope is in Jesus Christ, the fulfillment of God’s promises to David. The Puritan Pastor John Owen wrote on this text, “The judgement of God unto justification according to the gospel [does] not proceed on our works of obedience, but upon the righteousness of Christ, and our interest therein by faith; as is too evident to be modestly denied.” The Bible describes in Isaiah 64:6 that even our righteous deeds are filthy rags or a polluted garment. Our only hope of justification before the judgment of God is a righteousness that doesn’t come from us. Owen went on, “The conscience of a convinced sinner, who presents himself in the presence of God, finds all practically reduced unto this one point, – namely, whether he will trust unto his own personal inherent righteousness, or, in a full renunciation of it, betake himself unto the grace of God and the righteousness of Christ alone.” 1
 Owen, John The Works of John Owen, Volume 5, Faith and Its Evidences (Carlisle: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1998), 228.