Faith in the Father (Romans #8)

Text: Romans 4

The land in the Middle East has been in the news lately. Paul is beginning to explain faith in Jesus Christ and the effect of justification by faith. Romans 5:1, THEREFORE… meaning, based on everything Paul just said.

Abraham’s faith now that he carries the Seed (vss 1-5)

  • If justification is by faith, which it is, why is Abraham being credited with righteousness in Genesis 15, but not in Genesis 12? Hebrews 11:8 By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing whither he went. That’s Genesis 12.
  • One difference is the specific promise of an heir, who is the Seed, who is Christ in Genesis 15. In Genesis 12 there is no heir. There is no seed.
  • The heir
    • Parable of the landowner who sends the heir and they kill him.
    • Hebrews 1:2 Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;
    • John 8:33-36 (Jesus said come unto me and I will give you rest unto your soul. Rest is the inheritance that belongs to the heir.)
    • Galatians 3:26 – 4:1-7
    • Romans 8:16-17
  • This promised heir who is the seed is based on a promise 400 years before Moses’ law was instituted. So the blessings that are found in the heir are not connected to the law. 

David describes this forgiveness (vss 6-8)

  • Paul uses David to illustrate justification by faith even under the law. So justification by faith is a practice before the law is given and it’s a practice for the Israelites who were given the law.
  • Now, if Psalm 32 that Paul cites is after David’s sin with Bathsheba, that emphasizes even more the blessings connected with Jesus Christ.
    • The promise was made to David about his heir sitting on the throne and building the house of God for David.
    • After the promise and high point in David’s life, what does David do? He commits adultery and has a child with Bathsheba.
    • Anyone remember what Abraham did right after Genesis 15 and the promise of the heir? He and Sarah decide the heir is coming through Hagar b/c Sarah is too old. So Abe has a child with Hagar. What follows is this weird sign of circumcision. 
  • Let’s read the psalm Paul is quoting from and learn how a man under the law, condemned by the law, is justified by God. Psalm 32
  • So after David publicly acknowledges his sin at the preaching of Nathan, God confirms his forgiveness of David by giving him and Bathsheba a son named Solomon. David will explain later as he’s dying that Solomon must be the king, not Absalom or any other of his children. Why? Because Solomon is the son connected to the forgiveness of God. And that’s what the Seed, Jesus Christ, will bring.

Does this forgiveness come because of circumcision? (vss 9-12)

  • Obviously, circumcision isn’t what brought about the promised heir or the forgiveness that would be found in the heir.
  • Since circumcision wasn’t the thing that brought about the promise, it isn’t limited to the “circumcion.”

The promise is outside the law (vss 13-22)

  • Galatians 3:5-11, 26-29, 6:16.
  • The righteousness would eventually come through the heir, the Seed of promise. But that righteousness which allows forgiveness once for all is not a reality until the Seed comes and satisfies the Father.
  • Abraham believed that God could bring life out of death as it relates to this Seed.

Written down for our learning and admonition (vss 23-25)

  • Let the record show that Abraham was justified by faith, not the works of the law. Therefore whoever trusts the God that raised up Jesus Christ from the dead can share in that justification.