Wesleyan Core Term - Acceptance


John Wesley, like all Christians, recognizes that the Lord is “our righteousness” (Sermon 20: “The Lord is Our Righteousness”). We are acceptable to God not because of what we do but because of what Jesus did for us. Wesley also insists that God’s gracious acceptance of us both enables and requires cultivation of inner righteousness which he understands to be perfect love. We cannot claim the Lord is our righteousness unless righteousness becomes ours as well as God’s. Wesley warns Christians not to think they are accepted if they are not also being made righteous. Without this, he proclaims, “the righteousness of Christ will profit them nothing”. Matthew’s Gospel is the essence of this righteousness for it moves from Jesus’ proclamation of happiness (Matt 5) to the command be perfect (Matt 7:48). Wesley deems this movement from happiness to perfection as “righteousness.” It is first Christ’s righteousness, but it is also ours. Together they constitute our acceptance before God. -Wesley Study Bible pg 1191