“Now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets” (Rom. 3:21). How are we to understand what this text means?
This new righteousness is contrasted with the righteousness of the law, which was the righteousness with which the Jew was familiar.
The new righteousness is called “the righteousness of God”; that is, a righteousness that comes from God, a righteousness that God provides, and the only one that He accepts as true righteousness.
This is, of course, the righteousness that Jesus wrought out in His life while here in human flesh-a righteousness that He offers to all who will accept it by faith, who will claim it for themselves, not because they deserve it but because they need it.
“Righteousness is obedience to the law. The law demands righteousness, and this the sinner owes to the law; but he is incapable of rendering it. The only way in which he can attain to righteousness is through faith. By faith he can bring to God the merits of Christ, and the Lord places the obedience of His Son to the sinner’s account. Christ’s righteousness is accepted in place of man’s failure, and God receives, pardons, justifies, the repentant, believing soul, treats him as though he were righteous, and loves him as He loves His Son.” – Ellen G. White, Selected Messages, book 1, p. 367. How can you learn to accept this wonderful truth for yourself? See also Rom. 3:22.
The faith of Jesus Christ is here, doubtless, faith in Jesus Christ. As it operates in the Christian life, faith is much more than intellectual assent; it is more than just an acknowledgment of certain facts about Christ’s life and His death. Instead, true faith in Jesus Christ is accepting Him as Savior, Substitute, Surety, and Lord. It is choosing His way of life. It is trusting Him and seeking by faith to live according to His commandments.
Source: Daily Sabbath School Lessons