New American Standard Bible
"For I say to you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven.
King James Bible
For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.
Darby Bible Translation
For I say unto you, that unless your righteousness surpass that of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no wise enter into the kingdom of the heavens.
World English Bible
For I tell you that unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, there is no way you will enter into the Kingdom of Heaven.
Young's Literal Translation
'For I say to you, that if your righteousness may not abound above that of the scribes and Pharisees, ye may not enter to the reign of the heavens.
Matthew 5:20 Parallel
CommentaryBarnes' Notes on the Bible
Your righteousness - Your holiness; your views of the nature of righteousness, and your conduct and lives. Unless you are more holy than they are, you cannot be saved.
Shall exceed - Shall excel, or abound more. The righteousness of true Christians is seated in the heart, and is therefore genuine. Jesus means that unless they had more real holiness of character than the scribes and Pharisees, they could not be saved.
The righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees - See the notes at Matthew 3:7. Their righteousness consisted in outward observances of the ceremonial and traditional law. They offered sacrifices, fasted often. prayed much, were punctilious about ablutions, and tithes, and the ceremonies of religion, but neglected justice, truth, purity, and holiness of heart. See Matthew 23:13-33. The righteousness that Jesus required in his kingdom was purity, chastity, honesty, temperance, the fear of God, and the love of man. It is pure, eternal, reaching the motives, and making the life holy.
The kingdom of heaven - See the notes at Matthew 3:2. Shall not be a suitable subject of his kingdom here, or saved in the world to come.
LibraryThe Eighth Beatitude
'Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.'--MATT. v. 10. We have seen the description of the true subjects of the kingdom growing into form and completeness before our eyes in the preceding verses, which tell us what they are in their own consciousness, what they are in their longings, what they become in inward nature by God's gift of purity, how they move among men as angels of God, meek, merciful, peace-bringing. Is anything more needed …
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture
The Second Beatitude
The Law of Love
Then they understood that He did not say to beware of the leaven of bread, but of the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.
"The Pharisee stood and was praying this to himself: 'God, I thank You that I am not like other people: swindlers, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector.
'I fast twice a week; I pay tithes of all that I get.'
2 Corinthians 3:9
For if the ministry of condemnation has glory, much more does the ministry of righteousness abound in glory.
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