Grace alone, faith alone, Christ alone
Part 4: Text Romans 4: 1-5
“What then shall we say that Abraham, our ancestor according to the flesh, found? For if Abraham was justified [was saved] by works he has something to boast about, but not before God. For what does the Scripture say? “ABRAHAM BELIEVES IN GOD, AND THIS HAS BEEN CREDITED TO HIM AS JUSTICE.” But to those who work, their salary is not credited as a favor, but what is due. But to him who does not work, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited with righteousness ”.
The majority of people who gave their lives to Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord came from churches or other religious systems that taught that it was possible for a born sinner to earn money or gamble. a cooperative role with Jesus Christ. by redeeming itself. Over the past three weeks, we have shared with you the truth that God’s standard of salvation has never, at any time, called sinners to “work” to gain heaven, for that is not possible ( Romans 3:23). Our text this week, as well as our last three weeks of study in Ephesians 2: 8-10, Galatians 2: 20-21 and Romans 11: 5-6, is another clear illustration of this truth.
In Romans 3, Paul writes to his Jewish critics that the whole world is guilty before God and that salvation is a free gift that cannot be earned. In chapter 4, he supports his argument by going back to the beginning; to Abraham. The Jews believed that Abraham “worked” to “win” heaven. But verse 2 says that if Abraham was justified, or saved by his own efforts, he has something to boast about; but not in the presence of God. In verse 3, Paul quotes Genesis 15: 6, where God promised Abraham and Sarah a son when they were both quite old (see also Genesis 12: 1-9 and Hebrews 11: 8-19.) Abraham, by a powerless and invisible faith, believed in the promises of God. He only saw one promise come true; the birth of his son Isaac. Accordingly, his trust in God was credited to him as having the righteousness of God; not his.
In verses 4-5, Paul clearly contrasts the futility of works with true salvation. The salary, or payment of a person who attempts to “work” for Heaven, finds neither favor nor admiration in the sight of God. Why? This is because it is not God’s standard for salvation, but rather this man-made religious standard or his own self-imposed standard of evaluation. In contrast, verse 5 tells us that whoever does not trust his works for salvation, but rather by helpless faith placing his trust in the promises of God, that his ungodly and unjust soul will be saved and will receive righteousness. of God. (Read Philippians 3: 7-10.)
Friends, we are not saved from our sins and declared righteous on the basis of where we attend a worship service. In contrast, what we personally believe about HOW we were saved will determine where we spend eternity. Based on what we have considered so far in this series, do you agree with God’s standard of salvation, which is to embrace with a heart of gratitude the grace of God alone, by faith alone? , in Jesus Christ alone. If not, our prayer is that you begin to consider, perhaps for the first time in your life, where you will spend eternity. With great respect, assuming that you are “good enough” to enter Heaven on the basis of your personal assessment criteria does the following: it minimizes the severity of your sins, and it tramples and blasphemes God’s grace on you. showed by sending Jesus to die in your place. It is the epitome of Pharisaic pride and arrogance. From what we have considered, no one has, is now or ever will be in Heaven whose heart displays these attributes.
As always, if you would like to speak with one of our staff, we would be honored to speak with you. Life is just a vapor. Eternity if forever. It has no end.
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