Isaiah 64:4-6 Is Righteousness Filthy Rags?


"Mark 16:15 preach the gospel to every creature. Matthew 28:20 Teaching them to observe (do) all things whatsoever I (Jesus Christ) have commanded: Revelation 22:13 I am Alpha and Omega .. 14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, .. they .. have right to the tree of life, and .. enter .. the city."


I am a retired pastor of the Church of God (Tennessee).
My name is Isaac Livingston. I am from Neyyoor India.

Isaiah 64:4-6 Is Righteousness Filthy Rags?

Most preachers quote Isaiah 64:6, which says "all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags." Then they explain this verse to us by saying that all the righteous acts of a faithful Christian appear as filthy rags in the sight of God. Most preachers know this teaching is deceptive, which means that they intentionally misrepresent this scripture to deceive Christians. They serve Satan and they are paid for the job of deception. Even if the deception is not intentional and is taught in ignorance, the end result is the same; Christians are deceived. Preachers deceive their own, as Eve deceived Adam without knowing what she was doing.

To see the true meaning of this scripture, we must read this in its context. "5) ...  behold, thou art wroth; for we have sinned. 6) But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away. 7) And there is none that calleth upon thy name, that stirreth up himself to take hold of thee: for thou hast hid thy face from us, and hast consumed us, because of our iniquities." These people were living in sin and iniquities, they didn’t even call upon God, God's wrath was upon them and God had rejected them. They were lost in their sins; the best of their works are filthy – everything about them was unclean. False preachers use this verse to tell godly people that their righteousness is filthy rags. This is the lie of the devil to mislead and to humiliate God's people. How utterly tragic it must be for true Christians to be falsely accused that their righteousness is filthy rags? And, it is a relief to know that this preaching is a lie and it is from the devil and devil uses his servants as preachers.

Let us look at the previous verse. Isaiah 64 says: "4) …since the beginning of the world men have not heard, nor perceived by the ear, neither hath the eye seen, O God, beside thee, what he hath prepared for him that waiteth for him. 5) Thou meetest him that rejoiceth and worketh righteousness, those that remember thee in thy ways." Look here how marvelous are the benefits for the righteousness of godly people! It says that the things God has prepared for them are so marvelous that the human mind cannot even comprehend them! God is waiting to meet them in his second coming to honor these people with these great heavenly benefits. Would a God who welcomes righteous people to an eternity with him in heaven consider the righteous acts of these very same people to be filthy rags? Can you see and understand how tragic it is that these preachers teach Christians that their best acts of righteousness are seen by God as filthy rags? Let me ask you something: How is it that none of these preachers read verses 4 and 5, while everybody reads verse 6? Verse 6 comes after verses 4 and 5, not before. Why is it that they skip verses 4 and 5 to preach verse 6? They are crooked and froward, preach lies intentionally. This complete passage from the scripture says, in its context, that God is waiting to give heavenly rewards to those who do righteous works. But all those who accept God in the religious level with clichés and praises, but live with sin, God says that their righteousness are as filthy rags.

Righteousness is gained only by our obedience to God, and nobody can achieve righteousness, in any other way. We have to obey him to receive it. Deuteronomy 6:25: "it shall be our righteousness, if we observe to do all these commandments before the LORD our God, as he hath commanded us." Romans 6:16: "Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?" Surely, if we obey God, we are righteous. There is no other way to obtain the righteousness from God. Preaching that Jesus Christ swaps his righteousness for our filthy sins, is insanity, it is lie and crime against God. Yet, from small preachers to big name theologians, preach this filthy lie for their own destruction.

Let us look at another scripture to see how God regards the righteousness of godly people: 2 Samuel 22 says: "21) The LORD rewarded me according to my righteousness: according to the cleanness of my hands hath he recompensed me. 22) For I have kept the ways of the LORD, and have not wickedly departed from my God. 23) For all his judgments were before me: and as for his statutes, I did not depart from them. 24) I was also upright before him, and have kept myself from mine iniquity. 25) Therefore the LORD hath recompensed me according to my righteousness; according to my cleanness in his eye sight." False preachers say the righteousness of godly people is nothing more than filthy rags. Yet verse 25 clearly refers to righteousness as cleanness in God’s sight. Deceptive preachers must repent, stop telling lies. They do it for a proof that they serve Satan. We must reject them and escape from damnation. If you are dear to God, you are called as his bride. Please look at this verse. "Revelation 19:8 And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints." Your righteousness is fine linen, clean and white: but not filthy rags. Your righteousness will make you his bride.

If you like details on this topic, click on this link: "Is it Filthy Rag". This is a video presentation.

Note: If any point needs explanation, OR, if you find an error according to scripture,
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God Bless You

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