For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed—a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.” The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, NIV
“For” – connects today’s verse to the previous verse – I am not ashamed of the Gospel, the power of God to salvation for all who believe… The righteousness of God is revealed through the gospel – through Christ.
Righteousness is a position word.
I am at a right relationship with the bank or credit card company. No past due payments owed. I have a right relation. The right relationship with God would be called righteousness. The problem is this. There is no way any of us would ever have a right standing with God because all are broken and part of the fallen nature from sin. So we could never, ever have a right standing with God, unless we received it from someone else. God has REVEALED His righteousness over us as we believe in Christ which is the gospel. As we have faith in Christ, God places a right standing on us. He makes us righteous before Him. He sees the reflection of Christ on us.
Received by faith alone!
Faith alone! Not by works of the law. Faith alone! Not by obedience to the Church. Faith alone! Not by human righteousness. Faith alone! Not by baptism. Faith alone! Not by good intentions. Faith alone! Not by the sacraments. Faith alone! Not by penance or almsgiving. Faith alone! Plus nothing and minus nothing.
Faith is complete reliance upon another person to do that which you could never do for yourself.
Ever have surgery? Did you have faith in the doctor? When you walk into a plane you have faith in the pilot and machinery to take you and the other thousands on pounds of people and luggage up thirty thousand feet in a tin can traveling at four hundred miles an hour. Every day I have lightnside through faith in Christ that today God’s righteousness will surround me because I rest in Christ’s words, presence and teachings.