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by Wayne Blank
Righteous Means Upright
References to the use of a plumb line in the Holy Scriptures are almost always that of The Lord's plumb line, how righteously people stand (righteous actually means upright) according to His Word. Whenever God's people became crooked (and almost never did they ever think of, or see, themselves as evil and corrupt even though they became so evil and corrupt that God couldn't stand the sight or sound of the hypocrites any longer), The Lord sent in the wreckers to demolish what made itself a condemned building (see also Why Babylon? and The Galilee Captivity).
Much of the purpose of The Lord's Prophets was to warn His people how crooked and warped they've become, regardless of how self-righteous they seem in their own eyes, whereby they think that "the evil that others do is not evil if we do it."
"He showed me: behold, The Lord was standing beside a wall built with a plumb line, with a plumb line in his hand. And The Lord said to me, "Amos, what do you see?"
The condemnation wasn't just about The Lord's people back then. The Lord does not change. What He said was wrong back then is just as wrong today because The Word of God is Timeless.
"And I will stretch over Jerusalem the measuring line of Samaria, and the plummet of the house of Ahab [see also The Fall of Ahab and Jezebel]; and I will wipe Jerusalem as one wipes a dish, wiping it and turning it upside down. And I will cast off the remnant of my heritage, and give them into the hand of their enemies, and they shall become a prey and a spoil to all their enemies, because they have done what is evil in my sight and have provoked Me to anger, since the day their fathers came out of Egypt, even to this day." (2 Kings 21:13-15 RSV)
The Messiah was and is however a better builder. We can be sure that He never built any crooked walls during His first coming, just as we can look forward with absolute certainty that the spiritual house (see the Fact Finder question below) of which He is the corner stone, or key stone, will be perfectly straight in every way. The Christ is coming to make straight all that has made itself crooked.
"Therefore thus says The Lord God, "Behold, I am laying in Zion [see Who, What or Where Is Zion?] for a foundation a stone, a tested stone, a precious cornerstone, of a sure foundation: 'He who believes will not be in haste.'
Fact Finder: Who or what is "the upright one"?