God’s Grace in Romans | The Secret of Abraham |
We saw from our last discussion that we establish the law in our lives by fulfilling its purpose when we accept its sentence of condemnation and run to Christ for salvation, and we also use it to do the same in the lives of others. This is the duty of the law.
Then the apostle continues in this next chapter by opening up something beautiful;
What shall we say then that Abraham our father, as about the flesh, hath found? Romans 4:1
There is something the father of the whole Jewish nation even the father of faith found that made him experience the blessings of faith.
Abraham was very rich on earth (Gen. 13:2), he was blessed in all things (Gen. 24:1). Abraham walked in the miraculous, he saw an entire household of numerous maidservants healed, wombs opened through just one prayer (Gen. 20:17-18).
And Abraham has a special place in heaven even as Jesus said Lazarus was in Abraham’s bosom (Luke 16:22).
Now to discover the secret of the father of faith I believe is one of the greatest things that would happen to anyone at this side of life.
So what did Abraham discover?
For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God. Romans 4:2
If Abraham were accepted before the Justice of God by his goodness then he would have had an opportunity to boast.
Many times we have had problems with Paul’s high level of revelation with what James meant. The reason is that we take the word out of context.
Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble. But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? James 2:19-21
This is very simple to understand when you know how the old testament people exercised their faith.
The object of worship and acceptance under the old testament was blood. Without the shedding of blood, no one was accepted and the blood was the object they used to demonstrate their faith in Jesus.
His work of sacrifice was not to earn righteousness but to place his faith in the son of God who was to die for his sins. He wasn’t sacrificing Isaac to earn anything it was a prophetic picture of justification by faith in The death of Christ.
This is why in context we hear even the devil believes but he can never put faith in the sacrifice of Christ for the forgiveness of his sins.
All through scripture Abraham never did anything to earn righteousness or any blessing from God. When you observe the scripture…
For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed in God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. Romans 4:3
God came to Abraham and made precious promises to Abraham, knowing that Abraham married his half-sister (Lev. 18:9), which is an abomination under God’s law (Lev. 18:26.).
He lied about his wife to save his neck twice, subjecting her to possible adultery Gen.12,20.
Yet God blessed him and came after him with a wonderful promise of redemption, through his seed. (Gen 15:1-6)
All Abraham did was to accept and believe in the power and goodness of God to do what he had promised and his faith pleased God and He counted it to him for righteousness,13 years before he even fulfilled the law’s demand of circumcision.
The word translated above for counted is from the Greek word logizomai which is an accounting term meaning to take inventory of, to estimate (G3049, Strong’s Concordance).
Abraham’s faith in the power and goodness of God made Him estimate or impute righteousness into his account without any merit on his side.
Then the apostle continues;
Now to him, that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but debt. Romans 4:4
The apostle here shows clearly that if we offer the works of the flesh to be justified, salvation will become a payment for our works and the grace of God completely nullified.
And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it is of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work. Romans 11:6
Now, this is what Abraham discovered:
But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness. Romans 4:5
With everything in Abraham’s life that was wrong, he was persuaded that God is a justifier of him who believes in Jesus no matter his ungodliness, by this God counted his faith equal to righteousness.
God gave him the finished work of Christ for the sinner as his righteousness. As we all look to his goodness, we are blessed together with faithful Abraham.
Heavenly Father, thank you for being a good God. In my emptiness, I can still look to your love in hope and find satisfaction in who and what you have done for me.
By faith in Christ, my iniquities are not marked, rather you have estimated me righteous by the blood of Christ which has procured righteousness, health, wealth, joy, peace, and life in constant communion and fellowship with you.
In an encounter with the Lord, I heard “Do not be deceived like Eve dear Child, there are boundaries you cannot reach. Even so, I have saved you the struggle and have placed your redemption in myself.
Rest from your efforts, look to me, and walk in the blessing. The heaviness, the bitterness, the dissatisfaction is coming from your struggles for perfection. Your flesh profits you nothing.
I Am God and there is none else, I have sworn and ordained that only in me is your righteousness and strength. I Am your glory and only in me are you justified. Beloved, rest and receive the blessings of righteousness.”
Look unto me and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else. I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, That unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear. Surely, shall one say, in the LORD have I righteousness and strength: even to him shall men come; and all that are incensed against him shall be ashamed. In the LORD shall all the seed of Israel be justified, and shall glory. Isaiah 45:22-25
Blessings in Christ,
Pastor Jahfas Victor Ahua
Living Hill Christian Church