What has God done or said in your life which he would like you to trust? Jesus dying on the cross for you is the biggest. Trust in God when he tells you Jesus covered your sin on the cross. Righteousness comes by faith as a gift. Accept that gift from Jesus today…
1 What then shall we say that Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh, discovered in this matter? 2 If, in fact, Abraham was justified by works, he had something to boast about—but not before God. 3 What does Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.”
4 Now to the one who works, wages are not credited as a gift but as an obligation. 5 However, to the one who does not work but trusts God who justifies the ungodly, their faith is credited as righteousness.
Abraham is called Father Abraham among the people of Israel. He is the father of their people as he was the first who made a covenant with God to have offspring which would number along with the stars in the sky. Paul reveals much about faith and righteousness in his investigation into the character and history of Abraham. In the first 5 verses, he cuts to the chase of works and salvation.
Abraham’s righteousness came to him because he believed God (vs. 3). Notice it doesn’t say he believed in God. He believed God. God told Abraham to leave his family and his homeland and travel to Israel (before it was Israel) to be blessed with a land God would give him. Abraham believed God. It wasn’t his goal that he wanted to accomplish or a mountain he determined to climb. No. He believed what God told him and God conferred righteousness upon him for his trust.
What has God done or said in your life which he would like you to trust? There could be a few things, yet Jesus dying on the cross for you is the biggest.
If you trust in Jesus, God gives you the gift of righteousness because of what Jesus did, through the faith you have in him (Ephesians 2:8-9). Trust in Jesus.
Then we see the little math equation: if a man works, his wages are an obligation. They are not a gift (vs. 4). It’s 8 hours at $20/hr = $160 owed. It’s math. It’s earned. It’s not disputable. The contrast is the man who does not work but who trusts God who justifies the wicked. To that man, righteousness comes by faith as a gift to him.
We have a hard time with the idea that the wicked could be justified by faith. God shouldn’t be gracious to the wicked. Hold on. We are the wicked. Remember chapters 1-3? If we judge the people who are wicked for their actions, we set ourselves up as hypocrites because we do what they do. I won’t walk down that same path here. You can go back and review it yourself. The summary is that you and I need the gospel as much as that super-wicked person you are thinking of because we have our own wickedness.
Trust in God when he tells you Jesus covered your sin on the cross.
Accept that gift and be saved – be counted righteous – as a gift from God which you did not earn. Do it today!