Counted As Righteousness
Romans 4:3 (ESV) -- For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness.”
Faith has always been what pleases God. It has never been about what works we can do. The key has always been trusting what God says and taking Him at His Word. This is true not just of the new covenant, but the old as well. This isn’t just a New Testament principle. It is amplified and clarified in the New testament, but it is a running theme throughout the whole Bible.
Our passage today reminds us of this truth. We read Paul’s letter to the church in Rome. He says, “For what does the Scripture say? ‘Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness.’”
Paul reminded the Christians that God had already revealed in His Word that faith is central. Abraham believed God. We are told that God counted that belief as righteousness. What did Abraham believe? He believed God’s promise of an heir from Sarah. He promised an heir to them even in their old age. This heir would be the first offspring of what would become a great nation that God would make His own. His covenant promise was that through Abraham all nations of the world would be blessed.
The importance of this text is that it immediately follows Genesis 11 and the Tower of Babel. God scatters the nations and confuses the languages of the peoples because of their pride and sin. This looks hopeless for humanity. But Genesis 12 is the promise that God is going to make a nation that will be the source of blessing to all nations. That promise would be fulfilled through the coming of Jesus as the Savior of people of every nation, tribe, and tongue who call on Him.
Abraham believed God’s promise and God counted his belief as righteousness. This faith was credited to Abraham as a right-standing with God. He had access to the Almighty. This faith Abraham displayed is the same thing we display when we take God at His Word through the gospel. Through faith in the finished work of Jesus, our sins are forgiven. We are credited with the righteousness of Christ. We enter into the covenant promise as children of God.
Are you counted as righteous today? If you are trusting Christ for your salvation, the answer is “yes.” Rejoice and give thanks to God for His mercy and grace.
Reflection & Journal:
- Why is it important to realize that faith has always been what pleases God?
- What is faith? How did Abraham demonstrate faith?
- How does faith play out in your life each day?
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