Hear the word of the Lord, you children of Israel, for the Lord brings a charge against the inhabitants of the land: “There is no truth or mercy or knowledge of God in the land.” (Hosea 4:1)
Three Pillars Of Righteousness
There are three basic foundations of righteousness that when present will exalt a people and destroy a nation if absent. Truth, mercy, and knowledge are the building blocks of God’s grace upon the world. From the beginning of time, these principles have remained the same. Noah’s world was destroyed in the flood because there was no truth, no mercy and God had been abandoned by men. Israel was destroyed for the lack of righteousness that made them a great nation. Their history was replete with the warnings of the Lord against denying the truth of His word, showing mercy and kindness to others, and filling their hearts with the word of God. When the people turned away from the Lord they denied His truth as law becoming a law to themselves. As a result, they did not show love for one another through acts of mercy but rather they sold one another for silver and poor people for a pair of sandals. They crushed the helpless in the dust and pushed the oppressed out of the way. To make matters worse, both father and son sleep with the same woman. Without the knowledge of God, there was no restraint. Righteousness had been abandoned for the carnal pleasures of the flesh. There was no truth or mercy or the knowledge of God in the land.
When the world at large rejects the truth of God’s word it becomes a place of darkness in the putridity of man’s abuse of others in impurity, lustful pleasures, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, envy, drunkenness, and the wanton pleasures of self. Without truth, there is no law. In the absence of law, there is no restraint. Society breaks down to lying, killing, stealing, sexual immorality of adultery, homosexuality, and perverted sexual abuse. There is no restraint. Knowledge is rejected. Unrighteousness is the mantra of the day. Humanity implodes on itself is self-destruction. The wisdom of man is seen for the failed system of self-gratification that it is. Only when truth is restored, mercy is given and the knowledge of God retained will peace come to the world.
Jesus came as the truth of God to show mercy in dying for all men so that lost souls can come to the knowledge of salvation. The three pillars of righteousness are found in Jesus Christ. He is truth. Everything He said is the faithfulness of the will of God. No man has lived in perfection but Christ became flesh and was sinless. His truth is pure because there is no falsehood in Him. Truth is measured by the word of God and Jesus is the Word. Righteousness is Jesus Christ. His word is truth. The example of Jesus shows the incredible gift of God to willingly offer His Son as a sacrifice for the sins of all men. Mercy is discovered at the cross of the One who is Truth. Jesus offered to humanity the kindness of God to leave His place with the Father and endure the sufferings of the flesh so that righteousness could be exalted before the heart of men. The cross is righteousness.
Without knowledge, man is destroyed. The Word became flesh and expressed the love of God’s mercy. Jesus came to open the portals of eternal life through the knowledge of God’s grace. Through the knowledge of God, no man should be lost but Jesus said that most men will not find eternal life. Sadly, the knowledge of salvation is given to men but they reject this knowledge for their carnal wisdom. Righteousness is establishing what is right in the eyes of the Lord and this knowledge can only come from the One who formed man in His image. What is right is what God says is right. When the Lord declares a thing to be evil it is because it stands against His will. Righteousness is the word of God.
The three pillars of righteousness are truth, mercy, and knowledge. When these characters are absent in a person’s life they will never find joy, happiness, or fulfillment. All of the tragedies of humanity come from the absence of truth, mercy, and knowledge. For the child of God, filling their hearts with the truth of God’s word, showing kindness to others, and growing in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ will transform their lives to a full and complete life. The greatest joy of living righteous lives will be found when the Father says, “Enter in.” Without truth, mercy, and knowledge men are destroyed. Their doom will be eternal. Build your house on the rock. Everything else is sand.