Q. I am so blessed by your teachings. Thank you so much. I have a question regarding the gift of righteousness. You said that tribulation believers will have to maintain their own righteousness in order to be accepted in the kingdom of God. I wonder what they will believe at that time. Is it the finished work of Jesus Christ at the cross or just Jesus is the Messiah ? Did the finished work of Jesus at the cross already include the gift of righteousness? How come they have to maintain their own righteousness if they believe the cross ?
A. By comparing God’s relationship with the Church with His relationship with other groups we can see that the Church is unique. We are the only group that’s saved by grace through faith alone (Ephes. 2:8-9). Paul said God has given us a righteousness apart from the Law that comes through our faith in Jesus Christ (Romans 3:21-22).
This was not true before the Church, nor will it be true afterward. In Rev. 14:12 we can see that tribulation believers will have to obey God’s commandments and remain faithful to Jesus. This is very similar to the way it was in the Old Testament. The difference is before the Church, people had to believe in a coming Redeemer, whereas after the Church they will have to believe in the Redeemer who already came.