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ROMANS CHAPTERS 3 & 4

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1-3 Then what advantage has the Jew? Or what is the benefit of circumcision? 2 Great in every respect. First of all, that they were entrusted with the oracles of God. 3 What then? If some did not believe, their unbelief will not nullify the faithfulness of God, will it? 

 

Rom 3-1,2

(4e) Responsibility >> Advocate God’s cause >> Being accountable in your stewardship – The nation of Israel never understood their true ministry, thinking they had no obligation to the world at all, and considering the gentiles dogs, which is understandable in part, based on some of the teachings of the Old Testament. They never saw the big picture, how God made them stewards of the old covenant. A steward is someone who is apportioned responsibility for handling the accounts of someone else, but Israel laid claim to the Old Covenant thinking God was meant for them only, as though He didn't care about the rest of the world, and for this reason they missed their messiah when He came to give His life's blood for the sins of mankind. They lost their stewardship of the New Covenant that Christ would have happily given to them. The Bible paints a picture of Israel being the center of the world when God finally establishes His kingdom on the earth, and restores Israel in all her glory. Israel possessed and lost and then regained more than any other nation, and will increase more at the end of the age than they had throughout the eons in spite of being unfaithful. This is the justice of God to turn their unbelief into a blessing for the world. 

(148g) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Works of the Church bear witness to Jesus >> Evangelism >> Natural advantage regarding the Church

(190h) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Circumcision >> Circumcision is a sign of obedience >> Circumcision is a sign of believing -- Circumcision is a sign of obedience, and it is also a sign of believing. So which one is it, a sign of Obedience or of Believing? It is both, because they are one and the same. 'Those who believe obey, and those who obey believe.'

(210ia) Salvation >> Jews and gentiles are being saved >> Salvation is from the Jews >> Jews are believers >> Gentile Christians have a Jewish religion

Rom 3,3-9

(17d) Sin >> Judging in the flesh >> Accusing God and others of sin The people of Paul’s day brought up the invalid suggestion that maybe God is evil. When verse 8 says, "Let us do evil that good may come," it is referring to abusing Rom 5-20, "Where sin increased, grace abounded all the more." They rationalize that they can control the grace of God through sin, but this is cheap theology for those whose favorite pastime is sinning. "Their condemnation is just." God knows when we are trying to manipulate His grace; therefore, we should not be surprised when the consequences of our sin greet us instead of His grace and mercy. God cannot be evil, otherwise how could He judge the world?

(63g) Paradox >> Anomalies >> Sarcasm >> Be pretentious >> Pretending to be stupid

(184f) Works of the devil >> The origin of lawlessness >> Abusing the grace of God >> Spending His grace on your pleasures >> Trying to take advantage of God’s kindness Paul admits that our unrighteousness demonstrates the righteousness of God, whose grace was given because of unrighteousness, and so Paul asks, ‘Why is God still angry with me after I have given Him an opportunity to exercise His grace, for if it weren't for me, God would be unable to show His mercy.’ The individual who has this philosophy is trying to receive credit for being a sinner, which is the opposite lesson that God intended. He has glorified Himself throughout all creation in that He has forgiven the sinner who does not deserve His mercy, and so people in Paul’s day said, ‘Let’s glorify God all the more and keep sinning, for the more we sin, the more He forgives and the more He glorifies Himself.’ There are modern-day scoundrels who feel the same way in regard to their easy-believism. What good can come from willfully sinning?

Rom 3,3-8

(16i) Sin >> Continuing in sin to avoid the light >> Deny the truth

(21a) Sin >> Disobedience >> Demonstrating unbelief in the character of God – Since all men are liars, how is God’s grace and mercy supposed to affect anyone; conversely, what would be the point of God’s grace if none of us were sinners? His grace is for we sinners, so when the sinful nature gets the better of us, His grace can help us.

(75e) Thy kingdom come >> Motives >> Being manipulative >> Questioning God’s judgment – Paul is answering questions that people had in his day, being still relevant today, especially among those who hold to the doctrines of easy-believism. They say that our works are like filthy rags, and there is no good we can possibly do in the eyes of God (Isaiah 64-6). This gives them a pass so they don’t have to do anything for God, since there is no good they can do that would be acceptable to Him. For this reason they continue in their sins the same way they were living before they believed. Their faith in God has not changed them, except that maybe now they go to church. The sinner should not take advantage of God’s kindness or continue in sin, just because God has forgiven him and is glorified in His forgiveness. Paul asks, ‘If His righteousness is kind and merciful, then what is His wrath?’ Is it unrighteous? No! Paul is saying that the grace of God and the wrath of God are not opposites as we would suppose. Rather, they both relate to His righteous judgment, in that the grace of God was wrought through His wrath against His Son. Now when we sin, His anger is subsided and He can forgive us. We all believe that God’s grace is good, but few think His wrath is good, yet here we see that His wrath is just as good as His grace.

(88c) Thy kingdom come >> Faith produces works >> Relationship between faith and works >> Faith without works is dead

(166a) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> Wisdom of the world >> Man’s wisdom excuses his sinful nature >> Man’s wisdom rationalizes his sin – This passage takes us full-circle to see the different motives for sin, one being that we are enslaved to it (and in that way God sees us as victims), and the other is premeditated, devious and manipulative; these sins willfully abuse the grace of God. He is glorified through His grace and mercy, which is demonstrated through sin, so are we doing God a favor by sinning? No! God glorifies Himself through His grace in forgiveness, but our sin does not glorify Him. Any person who would have this attitude wouldn’t use just any sin to stimulate God's grace, but would pick the one he most prefers, exposing his real motive for sinning, not to glorify God but to revel in his flesh.

(176k) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> False doctrine >> Extremes >> Truth is never found in your thinking on either extreme of any subject

(178d) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Presumption (Hinduism) >> Presuming the facts about the circumstances >> Philosophy – Someone might complain about verse 4 and say that God always gets a free pass in everything. For example, when people sin, God judges them, but when He allows evil, everyone rushes to excuse Him. Moses wrote that Israel should be merciless against sin, and commanded them to revere and obey Him. Moreover, some of the Old Testament attitudes about women were very severe, so people have condemned God in these ways and many others. This rhetoric continues indefinitely when we talk to unbelievers and atheists and agnostics about God, but in His defense I say, ‘show me a perfect man and I will believe whatever he says, but if every man is a liar, then let God be true.’

(200j) Denying Christ >> Excuses for rejecting Christ >> Using irresponsibility as an excuse to reject God >> Using your sinful nature as an excuse to sin

Rom 3,3-6

(102j) Thy kingdom come >> Faithfulness (Loyalty) >> Consistency >> Loyalty

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4-8 May it never be! Rather, let God be found true, though every man be found a liar, as it is written, "THAT YOU MAY BE JUSTIFIED IN YOUR WORDS, AND PREVAIL WHEN YOU ARE JUDGED." 5 But if our unrighteousness demonstrates the righteousness of God, what shall we say? The God who inflicts wrath is not unrighteous, is He? (I am speaking in human terms.) 6 May it never be! For otherwise, how will God judge the world? 7 But if through my lie the truth of God abounded to His glory, why am I also still being judged as a sinner? 8 And why not say (as we are slanderously reported and as some claim that we say ), "Let us do evil that good may come "? Their condemnation is just.

 

Rom 3,4-20

(16b) Sin >> Man’s nature is instinctively evil >> Man is an enemy of God -- These verses go with verse 23. The book of Romans is a major help in understanding the gospel, showing how everything ties together. Paul here in chapter three first reveals our need to be saved before he goes on to describe what Jesus did to provide the way of salvation. Paul suggests that we need to be saved because we are evil, not that we did anything wrong but that we were born in sin and thus we have an evil nature through no fault of our own. Yet, we still need to repent and be forgiven. There is an old adage that goes like this: We're not sinners because we sin; we sin because we're sinners.

Rom 3-4

(107f) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Hearing From God >> Truth of the trinity >> Father is truth

Rom 3,5-8

(18f) Sin >> False Judgment lacks evidence >> Accusing God -- There are some who frankly don't believe in God's justice, but view Him as a monster and depicting Him as pitching problems at us to see what we will do, and then sending us to hell if we don't respond appropriately to His hardships. The problem with this theology is that it is not the result of hours of study in the word of God, nor of weighing the vast ocean of Scripture that speaks kindly to us about the gracious side of God. This theology results from someone reading his own twisted reasoning into the Scriptures. There are enough people who read their own ideas into the Bible, and not enough willing souls dedicated to understanding the words printed on the ancient manuscripts, thoughts so ethereal that no fleshly man could improve them, but these speak arrogant words of blasphemy against the very person and nature of God, discomforting, tumultuous souls, tortured in their minds, leaving the hearers to wrestle with their faith in shambles. 

(58c) Paradox >> Opposites >> Light of the truth is more brilliant around deception

(96k) Thy kingdom come >> Having a negative attitude about sin >> Being willing to practice sin – This is a very common belief system regarding secular atheists of whom we should be cautious. There is a deception in the world that urges us to believe the notion that virtually everybody is saved except psychopaths and serial killers and the dregs of mankind, but this is simply not the case. There are many people who make grandiose claims about their faith in God, though they are not legitimately saved. We have reason to tread lightly among them, for their faith is like a canker, and if we are dissuaded by them, our faith will disintegrate with theirs. They want us to live like them and silence our testimony. They are led by the devil, and therefore we should avoid them, and especially avoid their theology.

(157j) Witness >> Validity of the believer >> Evidence of being hell-bound >> Unable to know the truth – Sin is not a little thing; it is rooted in the very depths of our being and grows into monstrous forces that want to engulf us. People can get addicted to just about anything, and it is possible that certain believers have become addicted to the feeling of God’s grace after they have sinned, so they continue sinning to feel God’s grace again. It is like taking heroin; each time they must take a little more to feel the same effect. Soon the sense of forgiveness fades until it disappears altogether. This is the description of a person conforming to a reprobate mind. If we have this attitude about sin, it could get away from us and dominate our lives and destroy our faith, leaving us a broken, smoldering stump. The whole point of God's grace is to deliver us from sin, so if we develop any ideas about using sin to accomplish a goal, we can know for certain that we stumbled onto the wrong path and if we don’t immediately turn, we will get lost. The right path is walking in the grace of God for the purpose of freedom.

(166k) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> Carnality/Secularism (mindset of the world) >> The carnal mind cannot discern between good and evil >> The carnal mind’s idea of justice – The unbeliever has fleshly beliefs and acts on impulse and knows nothing about the spiritual realm. Put these three together: the secular atheists, the religious philosopher and the anointed Christianthe believer would stand alone while the other two would find common ground and conspire against the him. The moment the Christian opens His mouth in exhortation of the Scriptures, he is sure to be slandered, but even if he doesn’t mention a word about his faith, those who are of the world will despise him. Eventually they will recognize that he is not only different but their enemy. We come preaching Jesus to those who will believe in Him for eternal life, desiring that all men be saved; the world doesn’t have a better friend than the anointed Christian.

(179c) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Hypocrisy >> Jesus rebukes the Pharisees >> The world runs into the Church to escape God’s judgment

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Rom 3-5,6

(41a) Judgment >> God glorifies Himself as the judge of all -- Paul is asking, 'Why does God still find fault with me after my unrighteousness proves His righteousness'? In modern terms the question goes like this, 'How can you use a dirty rag to clean your car?' Paul must have frequently had arguments like this with people to include it in his letter to the Romans. The question should sound more like this, 'Why do you throw a dirty rag into the washing machine'? The dirty rag proves the usefulness of your washing machine. If you put only clean clothes in the machine and they came out clean, it wouldn't prove anything. In the same way, our sins prove that the blood of Jesus can wash away our sin. 

(48b) Judgment >> Eternal judgment >> God's eternal judgment on the world

Rom 3-5

(244i) Kingdom of God >> Spirit realm imposed on the natural realm >> Literal manifestations >> Literal manifestation of God’s word >> Manifesting the righteousness of His kingdom -- This verse goes with verses 25&26

Rom 3-7,8

(195d) Denying Christ >> Man exercises his will against God >> Idolatry >> Serving two masters >> You cannot serve righteousness and sin together

Rom 3-8

(27c) Sin >> Consequences of sin >> Condoning evil can bring a curse on your life Sometimes we get a little too liberal with the grace of God and start practicing sin under the premise that God will forgive us. While God is forgiving, there is a motive of abuse at work in this mindset by which God is not glorified. Going back to the washing machine analogy, our clothes get dirty enough through the activities of everyday life that we don't need to rub them in the dirt to see if the machine can take out the stains we cause, for there are some stains the machine can't erase. God will completely wash us of all sin before entering His heavenly kingdom, cleansing us from some of the toughest stains, but until then we must live with the brethren in this life, and our stains are an eyesore to them.


9-20 What then? Are we better than they? Not at all; for we have already charged that both Jews and Greeks are all under sin; 10 as it is written, "THERE IS NONE RIGHTEOUS, NOT EVEN ONE; 11 THERE IS NONE WHO UNDERSTANDS, THERE IS NONE WHO SEEKS FOR GOD; 12 ALL HAVE TURNED ASIDE, TOGETHER THEY HAVE BECOME USELESS; THERE IS NONE WHO DOES GOOD, THERE IS NOT EVEN ONE." 13 "THEIR THROAT IS AN OPEN GRAVE, WITH THEIR TONGUES THEY KEEP DECEIVING," "THE POISON OF ASPS IS UNDER THEIR LIPS "; 14 "WHOSE MOUTH IS FULL OF CURSING AND BITTERNESS "; 15 "THEIR FEET ARE SWIFT TO SHED BLOOD, 16 DESTRUCTION AND MISERY ARE IN THEIR PATHS, 17 AND THE PATH OF PEACE THEY HAVE NOT KNOWN." 18 "THERE IS NO FEAR OF GOD BEFORE THEIR EYES." 19 Now we know that whatever the Law says, it speaks to those who are under the Law, so that every mouth may be closed and all the world may become accountable to God; 20 because by the works of the Law no flesh will be justified in His sight; for through the Law comes the knowledge of sin.

 

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Rom 3,9-18

(141j) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Old Testament bears witness to the new >> Old Testament is for our instruction >> It reflects the nature of man in the law – Paul is quoting an Old Testament passage (Psalm 14,1-3; Ps 5-9; Ps 140-3; Ps 10-7; Ps 36-1; respectively) for the purpose of supporting his idea that no one is righteous or worthy of salvation. Everyone needs to be saved; nobody is exempt from this; in fact, denying they are sinners is their greatest sin. Similarly, there is a satanic belief loose in the Church today that teaches we don’t actually need to obey Christ. The way they describe it is that we are saved by grace through faith and not by works, according to Eph 2-8,9, which is true, but they teach that we are not required to demonstrate their faith, and if we do, then we might get side-tracked and start trusting in our works instead of our faith. This works as an opportunity for the flesh to be sinful, and it guarantees that we are not trusting in our works. We may not describe our faith in these terms; some may not even know they believe this, but if it is how we live, then it is what we believe. However, Paul said in Rom 6-1,2, “What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase? May it never be!”

Rom 3-9

(108e) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Balance >> God's sovereignty balances good from evil

Rom 3-13,14

(84i) Thy kingdom come >> Words of your mouth >> Gossip >> Attacking a person’s name – Paul is talking about a man before he is converted to the faith, showing that every person needs Jesus, and he is describing the person prior to salvation. Once we get saved, though, our lives should take a drastic turn toward holiness, righteousness, purity and goodness. For us to continue in our old ways after being enlightened demonstrates that the gospel has not influenced us. Without a change of heart, how do we know we believe?

Rom 3-19,20

(52d) Judgment >> Judging Church with world >> Law judges sin >> Law finds all men guilty of sin – The law interfaces with our conscience. God’s purpose for Christianity was to give us an opportunity to avoid living under the law, because it invariably condemns our conscience. Christians are not under law but under grace; this means they have the Holy Spirit dwelling in them. We do not live by an inert set of rules but by the articulate Spirit of God who lives in our hearts and gives us a will to obey Him, but those who have rejected Christ live under the law. Of course, there are those who say they live by neither the law nor their conscience but are totally free, but someone without conscience is a reprobate in his thoughts and in attitudes and values, and this is where mankind is destined, who rejects the purpose of God. There is some innate knowledge about God we cannot help but understand, such as that He exists, but if we don't believe this simple fact, it suggests that our conscience has been defiled and we are headed down the road to ruin. Also, we know that God is righteous, because if sin has an erosion effect on us, then it would have the same effect on Him, and so how could He create such an intricate and expansive universe if he were not righteous? If the heathen read the Bible, he would know the truth for sure, though he still may not believe it. The person who destroys his conscience trying to avoid God is the reprobate, the biggest fool of all. Without a conscience we cannot believe in God or even maintain our humanity.

(205k) Salvation >> Salvation is based on God’s promises >> Faith versus works >> The faith of God versus the faith of men >> Faith versus the flesh -- These verses go with verse 28. The true church of born again believers puts their faith in God, whereas religion puts its faith in the law. If religious people get nothing from following after the law except guilt and condemnation, then why do they do it? It is a way of stiff-arming God to keep Him at a safe distance, yet close enough to believe they are good people. The law was meant to make people see their need for redemption since they can't keep the law; instead they misappropriate the law and use it more like a thermometer. When they haven't done something against the law for a while, they think well of themselves, and when they break it, they sweep their deeds under the carpet and remind themselves of all the good things they have done. This is not the faith of Abraham, thus it is not the way to God's righteousness, and it will not get them to heaven.

Rom 3-19

(165b) Works of the devil >> Manifestations of the devil >> The world is at enmity with God >> The world is accountable to God – There are those who do not belong to God, whose names are not written in the Lamb's Book of Life, who are happy to live under the law, but the Bible teaches that if we live righteously under the law, it will lead us to faith in Christ. Therefore, those who live under the law ought to become Christians, yet too often we see just the opposite, people not really living under the law at all but sinning under the law. The fact that they have rejected God means the law they claim to follow they do not follow when it is inconvenient, paralleling what Paul said in Rom 6-20, “For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness.” They have a switch in their minds that they use to turn the law on and off. One minute they are on their good behavior, the next they’re acting like barbarians, fleshly, angry, jealous, full of lust and greed; then later, they flip the switch and suddenly they’re following the law again. They partition their minds so their left lobe doesn’t know what their right lobe is thinking. They simply choose to ignore the truth about themselves that they are in rebellion against God. This is true about every person who claims to follow the law and are unwilling to receive Christ as their Lord and savior. If they were actually following the law, they would be receptive to the gospel, so to resist the gospel is proof that they are not actually following the law. The last thing they want is their mouth closed by God and to be made accountable to Him.

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21&22 But now apart from the Law the righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by the Law and the Prophets, 22 even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; for there is no distinction;

 

Rom 3,21-28 

(227f) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> God working in you >> Depending on Jesus to have compassion >> Depending on Jesus to receive us

Rom 3-21,22

(41fb) Judgment >> Satan destroyed >> Be like Jesus >> Righteousness of faith >> Justified by faith -- These verses go with verses 25&26. In the next chapter Paul will elaborate on what he said in this chapter pertaining to the "Righteousness of faith." He will equate the faith that Abraham had with the faith that God expects of us for the redemption of our souls. Heb 11-8 says, "By faith Abraham, when he was called, obeyed...," and here in Romans Paul says that he was counted righteous the moment he believed. To have the faith of Abraham we must also obey as he did, though it is not obedience that makes us righteous before God. So what is the roll of obedience? It perfects and protects our faith, which is the active ingredient of salvation. Obedience completes our faith; otherwise, how could we prove we believed? We must not get the cart before the horse as religion does, or misappropriate our works, but keep it in God where it belongs, and let faith speak to God and our works speak to men. 

(51j) Judgment >> Judging the Church with the world >> No partiality with God’s righteousness – The grace of God is actually a form of judgment, though the popular view is just the opposite. God has judged us righteous through His grace, meaning that His pardon is not a matter of looking the other way and choosing to ignore our sins, but He has actually judged our sin through His Son. Paul calls this "grace" and defined it as the righteousness of God that He ordained before He made the world. That is, He determined that Christ should die for our sins before he created us. Paying for our sins is something God wanted to do; it was something He actually anticipated. It is righteous that God should forgive our sins through Christ; He became responsible for our sins, since He put us in this situation in the first place. Paul says we access this grace through faith, and He says that everybody is entitled to Him, not just Jews but also gentiles, not just Germans and Norwegians, but also Indians and Africans. All the nations of the world are invited to partake at His table of forgiveness. Every nation and culture has its own belief system before the gospel comes to them; the question is whether we are willing to give up our preconceived ideas. The gospel is not made to integrate into our former beliefs; therefore, God calls us to stamp out our old ideas and receive the gospel as God's Truth, as our only faith.

(232k) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Seeking the kingdom >> Seek the essence of his kingdom >> Seeking the righteousness of His kingdom – The word “faith” in this passage is difficult, because Paul leaves it undefined, but thanks to Hebrews, 11-1 it says "faith" is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Even then we still find faith difficult to understand. Some people struggle with it all their lives trying to grasp it, while others merely assume they believe when in fact they don’t. Biblical faith is more than just believing a set of facts. God will not give us a theological exam as a means of entering His heaven. Faith is a spiritual substance, and so we should know that it does not originate from the soul of man, but from the Spirit of God. We need to believe in such a way that God is willing to impart His faith into us, His righteousness, the Holy Spirit, who is the Spirit of faith (2Cor 4-13). We can believe well enough, but if we don’t have the Spirit of God dwelling in us, we don't have God’s faith. God is perfectly willing to impart His Spirit in us if we truly believe, but if we don’t believe in Him, how can we receive from Him? This is the complexity of the gospel; it is simple to those who believe, but impossible to those who don’t.

Rom 3-21

(41b) Judgment >> Satan destroyed >> Be like Jesus >> Jesus is without sin >> He fulfilled the law -- The power of the cross is Jesus' fulfillment of the law, being the only person who completely fulfilled God's holy commandments. The power of death is sin, of which Jesus had none; therefore, it was impossible for Him to die, though He lived in a mortal body. His mortality did mean that it was inevitable He should die, but that it was inevitable He should defeat death, since whether He died on a cross or of old age, death had no right to His sinless body. Now that we are believers in Jesus, we have partaken of His victory through the righteousness of faith; what is more, when we obey His will, His victory transfers to us as He leads us in paths of righteousness for His name sake. The entire book of Romans is sandwiched between this phrase: the obedience of faith (Rom 1-5; 16-26), which is the goal of Christianity. 

(119l) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Curse of God is broken >> Curse of the law is broken -- This verse goes with verses 24-28. "Grace" is apart from the law; God has completely sidestepped it. His grace is a remedy for our inability to keep His commandments in answer to man’s sin problem. The grace of God is like a construction company that built a bridge across a deep ravine that paralleled an abandoned road that didn’t have a bridge. God has bypassed the law, building a road that reaches to the other side, where God is waiting for us. Anybody attempting to traverse the ravine using the old road ultimately plunges to his death trying. The grace of God is designed to give His people eternal life in heaven, to forgive and cleanse us of all unrighteousness and to produce the fruit of the Spirit, which is designed to fulfill the law by a new and living way, instead of heeding a list of ordinances that we could never keep in the flesh. God has given us a new heart, imparting His Spirit into us that desires His will, bearing the fruit of the Spirit through a new nature He has given us. We obey God through His indwelling Holy Spirit, so manifesting the Kingdom of God we can do, whereas through the law we could not. The law was given only to reveal that we are sinners. Paul says that His grace witnesses to the law that it is good, and the law witnesses to God’s grace that it meets His requirements. The prophets wrote about this grace hundreds of years before God manifested it through His Son, so these things have been made more sure.

(141d) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Old Testament bears witness to the new >> It bears witness to Jesus >> Prophesy about Jesus’ ministry >> Jesus as the savior -- Jesus Christ is the righteousness of God. It is vital to the coherence of Scripture that the Old Testament should bear witness to the new covenant, that there be a connection between them and not be separate writings. Jesus didn't just appear one day and proclaim Himself the Messiah without any convincing proofs, and the miracles He performed would not have been enough proof that He was the Christ throughout all the generations. There would have been the matter of the authoritativeness of the witnesses, whereas the authoritativeness of fulfilled prophecy is self-evident. There is not a shard of archeological evidence that conclusively proves Jesus existed; rather, all the proof beyond Scripture is in the writings of His enemies, who never once contested His existence. His miracles proved who He was to the people of His day, but the most well founded proof we have in the twenty-first century of Jesus' lifework lies in the fulfilled prophecies of the Old and in the teachings of the New. That is, we know Jesus performed miracles and died for our sin because the Bibles says so, and we can trace the history of those writings. There is no other reliable proof beyond that. God the Father becomes Jesus' witness through the Old Testament as He explains how He would appear, what He would do, and the nature of His ministry, which kept the people of His time completely stumped, being the reason they crucified Him. Now we see Jesus as the righteousness of God, providing we have faith to believe in Him. 

(144h) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Witnesses of Jesus >> Trinity bears witness of Jesus >> Word of God bears witness to Jesus

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23&24 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 being justified as a gift by His grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus;

 

Rom 3-23

(16b) Sin >> Man’s nature is instinctively evil >> Man is an enemy of God – This verse goes with verses 4-20

Rom 3,24-28

(117f) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Rest in Jesus (Sabbath) >> Rest in His mercy -- We can believe in Jesus' work on the cross and it is good enough for God to accept us into His presence. Nevertheless, His goal for us in this life is to practice the law through faith in Jesus Christ. It doesn't justify us to practice the law, but it completes our faith. If we keep reading in verse 31, it says that we establish the law through faith. That is, we inadvertently full the law as we believe in Jesus. This is the kind of faith that proves its existence; it's a complete faith that completes us. Faith without works is a broken circle (Jm 2-26), whereas works complete the circle, but Paul separated the two to emphasize the significance of faith, so we know beyond the shadow of a doubt that faith is the active ingredient in our salvation that our works cannot save us.

(119l) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Curse of God is broken >> Curse of the law is broken -- These verses go with verse 21. God the father publicly displayed His Son as the propitiation of His wrath through the blood of His Son. Jesus went to the cross in faith that God would raise Him from the dead; by faith we access this grace, and by faith we will partake of the First Resurrection. The Bible says that God is love; faith and love are one and the same. The Holy Spirit and the word of God also work in tandem with minor difference between them; so it is with faith and love. If Jesus is the love of God, then the Father is the faith of God; He literally consists of faith. Our resurrected bodies will be composed of the substance of the Father, and He will create a new heavens and a new earth with this same substance. All things will be created with faith and love infused into them.

Rom 3-24,25

(37g) Judgment >> Judgment of God >> Redemption of man >> His blood is the gift of His grace – Throughout eternity Jesus was in perfect agreement with the Father, but the cross brought trepidation between them. God the Father was responsible for publicly displaying Jesus Christ on the cross. Had there been another way to effect the plan of redemption, Jesus would have taken it, but there was no other way to blot out the sins of mankind. Although the cross was brutal, Jesus wasn’t afraid of death or of the physical pain he would suffer; what bothered Him was experiencing the sins of the whole world heaped upon Him and the Father judging them through Him. The Father personally experienced sin and death through His Son. When Jesus cried, “My God, My God, why have you forsaken Me?” (Mat 27-46), He was referring to the Holy Spirit leaving Him, which was His connection to the Father. For Jesus to be separated from the Holy Spirit and for the Father to be separated from His Son was to experience sin and death for all three members of the Godhead. Nobody can tell God, ‘I know death and you don’t,’ because He now knows death better than anyone. Nobody can say, ‘I know sin but you don’t,’ because now God now knows sin better than anyone, though not as a sinner.

(61b) Paradox >> Two implied meanings >> Certificate of debt—Law of commandments / Records of our past – God passed over sins previously committed when we got saved. Our past life has been wiped clean of sin and also wiped clean of any benefit. Anything we have done prior to getting saved is a complete waste of life; all will be forgotten, except the things we do by faith in Jesus Christ. These will stand the test of eternity and allow us to enter the gates of heaven, and God will reward us for our obedience. What about the sins we commit as Christians? Although everyone sins as Christians and there is forgiveness through the cross in conjunction with repentance, the blood of Jesus cleanses us from all unrighteousness (1Jn 1-9), yet what about the sins of which we have not repented? They are a pitfall to the Christian! These are sticky sins, sins that are caustic to our faith. God wants to reward us not only for deeds of righteousness but also for conquering sinful addictions. Unrepentant sin is like cancer; it eats away at our faith, and in the judgment God will bring up our unrepentant sin and tell us that He cannot forgive these things because we never repented of them, and it will translate to a lack of reward. The reward that God wanted to give He cannot. The reward He does give, He will place on our resurrected bodies as the brightness of our radiance like stars in the sky. The unrepentant sins that we bring into judgment will subtract from our radiance, though no one will judge us, yet everyone will know how selfish we acted in this life.

(120g) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Forgiveness is an act of mercy >> We have forgiveness through the blood of Christ – Paul is speaking primarily about Israel and then to the rest of mankind about the forbearance of God who past over the sins previously committed, referring to all those years that Israel was disobedient until finally God had them deported in chains to Babylon for seventy years. When they were allowed to return to their homeland, they didn’t learn to repent, but continued in their waywardness. This pattern continued for centuries and through it God demonstrated His forbearance; He past over their sins through Christ. He forgave them for all those years and handed them a clean slate by which they could come to Him without any fear of the past. They didn’t owe Him a thing.

(207j) Salvation >> The salvation of God >> Salvation verses >> The generosity of God’s salvation >> Salvation is the gift of God

Rom 3-24

(31l) Gift of God >> Gift of His grace >> Forgiveness is an act of God’s grace


25-27 whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed; 26 for the demonstration, I say, of His righteousness at the present time, so that He would be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus. 27 Where then is boasting? It is excluded. By what kind of law? Of works? No, but by a law of faith.

 

Rom 3-25,26

(41fb) Judgment >> Satan destroyed >> Be like Jesus >> Righteousness of faith >> Justified by faith -- These verses go with verses 21&22. Verse 25 says that God "passed over" our sins. Wasn't there another time when God passed over the sins of the house of Israel in the Old Testament? Then-after, they celebrated the Passover as a memorial to what God did for them in the land of Egypt, illustrating the significance of that night. The Old Testament Passover was a prototype of God's new covenant plan of redemption for us through faith in Jesus Christ. When we look at the Passover and Israel's involvement, it consisted of merely placing a mark of lamb's blood over the door post of their houses. This simple act of obedience required very little faith and even less effort, yet it saved them from the angel of death. This is synonymous with having a simple faith in Christ versus attempting to please God by the works of the law outside of faith. God wants us to live and thus walk by faith in the redemptive blood of Jesus Christ which He poured out for us.

(244i) Kingdom of God >> Spirit realm imposed on the natural realm >> Literal manifestations >> Literal manifestation of God’s word >> Manifesting the righteousness of His kingdom -- These verses go with verse 5

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Rom 3-25

(126i) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Patience >> The patience of God >> God is patient

Rom 3-27

(77k) Thy kingdom come >> Being Humble Before God >> Having an attitude of humility – There is no work involved in being saved by grace through faith; however, once we receive this grace, God will have some things for us to do. He adopted us, and allegorically God is like a rich farmer and we have now become His farmhands. Once we receive His grace we become part of His household, and there are many chores to do on the farm. Eph 2-10 says, "We are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them." These good works are not what get us saved, but in doing them strengthen our faith. It also has the opposite effect if we refuse to do them, the sinful works we put in their place will erode our faith. The grace that God used to save us is the grace we use to do His will. If our faith is growing, it is a sign of spiritual maturity, but if we are not growing, it is a sign that we are dying. Growing or dying is hinged on whether we do the works that He prepared for us. There are many people who think they can get saved and continue on the trajectory they had before they met Christ, but this is wrong thinking, and could potentially lead to falling away from the faith.

(84g) Thy kingdom come >> Words of your mouth >> Boasting in men is not needed – The law of faith has excluded boasting. Why can’t we boast in our faith? The cross was completely God's idea; man had absolutely no part in it. Moreover, the argument that Paul made is that not even faith is our doing. If faith were the result of our efforts, we could boast in it, but it is the result of God working in us. Why isn’t everybody saved then? If we had something to do with our salvation, then why can’t we boast in our input? We only need to receive the grace of God through faith (Eph 2-8,9), but simply receiving it is not considered work, and if we want to boast in the fact that we received Christ after all God has done to make His grace available, then we are more lost than those working for their salvation. All we have done was receive it, like a rich man who would give us a roll of hundred-dollar bills; we merely take it from Him. Where is boasting in that? If we worked for the money, then we could boast, but we did no work. It was a free gift; the rich man wanted us to have it.

(119b) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Freedom >> Law of the Spirit of truth -- The law of sin and death states that if we sin, we will die, whereas the law of the Spirit states that if you believe in the blood sacrifice of Jesus Christ to cleanse us from all unrighteousness, we will live. God likes to institute laws and let them govern His creation while He stands back and supervises, as opposed to, for example, personally making sure everything we drop falls to the floor. Just as there are hard and fast laws that govern the natural universe, so there are laws that govern the spiritual realm, but He personally broke the law of sin and death through the death of His son, and so now there is a rift for us to walk through it. Our fleshly bodies remain under the curse of death, but our spirit has been "set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God" (Rom 8-21).

(205j) Salvation >> Salvation is based on God’s promises >> Faith versus works >> The faith of God versus the faith of men >> Faith is the law of righteousness


28-31 For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from works of the Law. 29 Or is God the God of Jews only? Is He not the God of Gentiles also? Yes, of Gentiles also, 30 since indeed God who will justify the circumcised by faith and the uncircumcised through faith is one. 31 Do we then nullify the Law through faith? May it never be! On the contrary, we establish the Law.

 

Rom 3-28

(108d) Thy kingdom come >> Faith is the balance between freedom and law -- This verse goes with verse 31. This is an important verse in our understanding of the grace of God. It perhaps does the best job of explaining the superior role of our salvation in the relationship between faith and works. Paul will eventually make the point that we must have both faith and works, but it is not the works themselves that save us. Rather, works are like the exhaust of a car; it proves the car is running, but it doesn't make the car run. 

(205h) Faith Versus Works (Key verse)

(205k) Salvation >> Salvation is based on God’s promises >> Faith versus works >> The faith of God versus the faith of men >> Faith versus the flesh -- This verse goes with verses 19&20

Rom 3-29-30

(136a) Temple >> Your spirit is the temple of God >> The body of Christ >> Similarity in the body >> The things we have in common >> Common faith – Unbelievers look into Christianity and scratch their heads. Faith is very simple to some and virtually impossible to others. How much faith do we need to be saved, and how does merely believing in a set of doctrines make a person acceptable to God? Is “faith” and believing the same thing? No, they’re not! "Believing" is related to obedience, while faith is the substance of our salvation. That is, believing is based on human volition, while “faith” is a divine ability to believe in Jesus. There are many who don’t understand faith, because they don't have the gift of salvation, and it makes them jealous, and occasionally their jealousy leads them to Christ. They tell God they are not leaving His presence until they possess the faith required for salvation, referring to the indwelling Holy Spirit.

(211a) Salvation >> Jews and gentiles are being saved >> Gentiles included >> Fellow heirs with Israel (Spiritual Jew) >> We are one in Christ – The fact that the gentiles are included in salvation has been so well entrenched that it is now assumed, and many have lost the gratitude of heart to appreciate God’s kindness to them. We should consider Israel the servant of man in that they are the nation who brought the gospel to the world in the first place. They may have fought God the whole way, yet the gospel came through them just the same, and we owe them a debt of gratitude. God does not perceive man as Jew or gentile; He does not make those distinctions, yet when He works with Israel, He uses His chosen nation to do things for the sake of the whole world. God works with Israel through their rich heritage and from their unique perspective on the Scriptures, though as individuals they are no different from gentiles, justifying both the circumcised and uncircumcised by faith in a common sacrifice of Jesus’ body on the cross.

 

Rom 3-30

(255i) Trinity >> Father, Son and Holy Spirit >> Three in one >> God is one

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Rom 3-31

(6e) Responsibility >> Advocate God’s cause >> Rest in Jesus’ yoke

(11d) Servant >> The law is our standard of conduct – Many people find grace and how it relates to the law difficult to understand, because they can’t make up their minds about whether the law is still in effect or not. Let me ease your mind once and for all and plainly tell you that the law, being true, will always be true. One of the essential characteristics of the truth is that it never stops being true, just like the law will forever remain true throughout all eternity. To put that statement to the test ask yourself if you can imagine a time or an era when it will no longer be necessary to love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength and to love your neighbor as yourself. If you cannot imagine a time when that will no longer be necessary, then the law will always remain true, though it is no longer in effect. The question is not whether the law has been abolished, but how we have been called to fulfill it; this verse says through grace. But what does that mean? It means we fulfill the law by the power of the Spirit who dwells in us. 

(90b) Keeping The Law (Key verse)

(90j) Thy kingdom come >> Keeping the law >> We do not nullify the law through faith; we fulfill it – All we have to do is believe God and He, through our faith, does all the work. That is not to say we do no work at all; rather, our works become the work of God as our will blends with His. What good thing can we do that is not covered by the law? Walking in the Spirit is the new covenant manner of fulfilling the law. It is defined as: listening for God in our heart and doing what He says. This requires time and effort in the word of God and prayer; in this way we practice listening for His voice. After walking by the Spirit, we discover that the works of the Spirit and the requirements of the law are in perfect harmony; that is, the Holy Spirit will lead us to love God with and to love our neighbor as ourselves.

(108d) Thy kingdom come >> Faith is the balance between freedom and law -- This verse goes with verse 28. There are some people who believe the law is abolished, and they also believe we have no obligation to produce any fruit (good works) through faith. Those who adhere to this theology are in bondage to Licentiousness; they feel they have a license to sin. This attitude comes from distorted definitions of grace and freedom. The Bible teaches that an unproductive faith is the same as having none at all. On the one hand, if our faith has not changed us in any way, then how do we know we believe? Just because we have approved a set of facts about God doesn't mean we have faith. On the other hand, those who practice the law to prove their faith are Legalistic, seeking favor with God through the law. In both cases we have missed the mark.

 

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Scripture quotations taken from the New American Standard Bible ® (NASB), Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation Used by permission. www.Lockman.org

 

ROMANS CHAPTER 4

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1-5 What then shall we say that Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh, has found? 2 For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God. 3 For what does the Scripture say? "ABRAHAM BELIEVED GOD, AND IT WAS CREDITED TO HIM AS RIGHTEOUSNESS." 4 Now to the one who works, his wage is not credited as a favor, but as what is due. 5 But to the one who does not work, but believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited as righteousness, 

 

Rom 4,1-16

(205j) Salvation >> Salvation is based on God’s promises >> Faith versus works >> The faith of God versus the faith of men >> Faith is the law of righteousness -- These verses go with verses 18-22. If you don't see salvation as a law of faith, then you must see it as the law of commandments (from Moses). Following the written law characterizes the faith of men, while hearing the voice of God and obeying Him characterizes the faith of God. Remember Abraham, the father of all who believe, who heard God's voice; he was led to go on a long journey far from his homeland, and his life changed forever because of it, and it changed the fate of all his descendants. Had Abraham not gone, would he have still believed? How could He? Nevertheless, Paul in Romans focuses on Abraham's faith and ignoring his feet to show that going to a distant country doesn't make you great, unless you are led by the Spirit to go there. It is hearing and believing His voice that defines the faith of God, and our feet join in believing what we have heard.

Rom 4,1-5

(1h) Responsibility >> Avoid offending God >> False burden >> Serving God in ignorance >> Not knowing His will – Anyone who works for his salvation is carrying a false burden, because God does not recognize such labor as faith. We are accustom to performing some kind of action and expecting a desired result, but when we are called to merely believe in God, such nebulous requirement is foreign to us. We are not used to sitting down and letting God do the work, and we merely being willing participants. We are more acquainted with working for a living and paying for everything we have. Working with God, though, we must trust that He has taken care of everything. 

(3a) Responsibility >> Avoid offending God >> Get out of His way >> Do not seek your own righteousness

(174d) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Form of godliness >> Self righteousness >> Trying to please God by your own good works -- These verses go with verses 13&14

(176d) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Zeal without knowledge (Spirit w/o the word) >> Conviction without commandment

Rom 4,2-25

(41fa) Judgment >> Satan destroyed >> Be like Jesus >> Righteousness of faith >> Example of Abraham It says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness” (v3); Abraham heard an audible voice and recognized Him as God. Samuel also heard an audible voice, but the voice of the Holy Spirit in new covenant Christians is inaudible, leading us away from sin and into a relationship with the Father through Christ and helping us find the trail of good works that He has specifically designed for us. This is the Christian life with no mention of the Law. We have the indwelling Holy Spirit to replace the Law, who speaks to us about our sins in a far better way than the Law ever could. The Law spoke to our conscience as the Holy Spirit does, but His Spirit has a much better ministry than the written word, in that it is easier to manipulate our conscience with the law, but when we try to manipulate the Holy Spirit, He corrects us. The negative side is that if we override the Holy Spirit, God's judgment is far greater than overriding an inanimate list of commandments. Note the difference between what Paul said and how the Old Testament reads, “Blessed are those whose lawless deeds have been forgiven.” Forgiveness of sin is what David was saying, but Paul spoke in terms of righteousness, obtaining it apart from works, since our works are the subject of God’s complaint against us. We are unable to achieve His righteousness because of our fallen state, and so His justification comes through faith in Jesus’ blood sacrifice. Righteousness denotes good works, but the righteousness that Paul mentioned does not originate from man but from God. He sent His only Son to live among fallen man, who taught us the ways of God and demonstrated His divinity through signs, wonders and miracles, who was then brutally murdered, shows both God’s wisdom and man’s true nature as sinners.

Rom 4,5-8

(231d) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> God’s grace is the mystery of godliness >> Having favor with God is a mystery -- This verse goes with verse 13. How could God forgive us just by believing certain things about Him? First, there is no way He could base salvation on our works, since His complaint against us is that we are sinners. Secondly and more importantly, everything God does is based on faith, so to believe in God is to be more God-like than anything else we could do. Take the biblical record of creation for instance; Genesis 1-3 says, Let there be light and light was." The Faith Chapter also says in Heb 11-3, "By faith we understand that the worlds were prepared by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things which are visible." So God spoke these things into existence through His word, that is by faith, and that is what we do when we confess Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior of our souls. We speak our salvation into existence through faith in the cross. Since the creation is a mystery, having favor with God is also a mystery. 

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6-8 just as David also speaks of the blessing on the man to whom God credits righteousness apart from works: 7 "BLESSED ARE THOSE WHOSE LAWLESS DEEDS HAVE BEEN FORGIVEN, AND WHOSE SINS HAVE BEEN COVERED. 8 "BLESSED IS THE MAN WHOSE SIN THE LORD WILL NOT TAKE INTO ACCOUNT."

 

Rom 4,6-8

(120f) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Forgiveness is an act of mercy >> God passes over our sins – Jesus obeyed His Father to the point of death, even death on a cross in hope of possessing the Church in eternity after it has been washed from sin. The cross was God’s manner of cleansing us that He instituted by His own authority. We do not strive to impress God to obtain His favor. Remember what God said to Moses, “See that you... [do all things] according to the pattern shown you on the mountain” (NIV; exodus 25-40). This was the most important statement that God made to Moses regarding the temple, that they should make it exactly to the specification shown him on the mountain, and that they should worship God exactly in the manner dictated to him. In other words, obedience is the only acceptable form of worship. The very first act of obedience in every Christian is to be born-again, trusting in the blood sacrifice of Jesus Christ, involving no works of righteousness at all and makes all subsequent obedience acceptable to God. Faith and trust are works we perform from the heart, entirely internal, believing in the works of God. Only the believer knows that he is actually trusting God for His righteousness.

(205kb) Salvation >> Salvation is based on God’s promises >> Faith versus works >> The faith of God versus the faith of men >> Faith versus the law >> Saved by grace through faith Once we answer the question of God’s forgiveness as imputed through faith, the question then becomes, 'How do we ignite faith in our hearts that merits His righteousness?' Since faith is separate from works, our definition of faith if it even mentions “works” is not the kind that appeals to God for His righteousness. Virtually everyone has faith, but not all faith moves God. The best word that defines “faith” is trust. We trust God, because we don’t have it in us to be righteous in ourselves to gain His favor. No matter how many good works we accumulate or how many victories we win over sin, we will never be righteous enough for God. Instead, all our pursuits of righteousness and addictions we overcome are indicators of faith, but are not faith itself, for our faith is safely hidden in Jesus. Our righteousness cannot justify us before God, otherwise we could boast in ourselves, but as it stands our boast is in Christ.

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9&10 Is this blessing then on the circumcised, or on the uncircumcised also? For we say, "FAITH WAS CREDITED TO ABRAHAM AS RIGHTEOUSNESS." 10 How then was it credited? While he was circumcised, or uncircumcised? Not while circumcised, but while uncircumcised;

 

Rom 4,9-25

(250h) Priorities >> God’s prerequisites >> Sequence of priorities >> The first is a precondition for what comes after it (Cause and effect) – By the time Paul was born circumcision became a fallacy. There are two critical points to note in this passage: (1) righteousness was credited through Abraham, not through Moses; (2) righteousness was credited before Abraham was circumcised, not after. That is, God pledged His favor on Abraham before he took his first step, in the same way that we got saved and God pledged His Spirit the day we committed our lives to Him, not after seeing our obedience. In other words, God's covenant with man is based on faith, God pledging His righteousness through the Spirit in hope of becoming His worshippers, and we pledging our faithfulness to Him in hope of eternal life. 

Rom 4,9-16

(250g) Priorities >> God’s prerequisites >> Sequence of priorities >> Spiritual then the natural (Faith then the promise) -- Abraham was simply expected to believe the promise that God would give him a son. Had Abraham quit believing, he would have been utterly shocked at Sarah's pregnancy, and he would have lost the promise associated with the miracle. Throughout his relationship with Isaac, he would have felt estranged, disassociated and disengaged from his significance as the fulfillment of God's promise that Abraham had abandoned, had he quit believing. Guilt would have inlaid his soul, which would have had a greater impact on his heart than the joy of a new son and being on track with the Spirit of an all-powerful God who was communicating with him. In short, He simply would not have had a relationship with God, nor would he have understood anything about Isaac, who probably would have felt like a botched fulfilled promise. However, in hope against hope Abraham continued to believe and his faith gave glory to God, and so does ours. There are things for which we wait patiently our whole lives, such as heaven itself. Do not quit believing in God, for there is no reward in unbelief.

Rom 4,9-13

(190h) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Separation from the old man >> Circumcision is a sign of obedience >> Circumcision is a sign of believing -- God commanded circumcision in the Old Testament for hygiene purposes, Abraham being the first to receive it, which doubled as a sign of faith in God for the nation of Israel. This sign pertained to the penis of all things. We know that faith and the penis have nothing in common, and we also know that whatever a man believes is demonstrated through his penis. If a man doesn’t believe in God, he will use the members of his body to violate His laws, but if a person believes in God, he will use his body to glorify Him. Therefore, circumcision acted as God's stamp of approval on Abraham and on those who exhibited the kind of faith that Abraham lived. The big question that Paul posed was whether Abraham was circumcised before or after receiving God's blessing of righteousness, and the answer showed that he was circumcised after he believed. The significance of believing before circumcision demonstrates that the blessing comes through faith and not through circumcision, which is a work of the flesh, and which later became a statute of Moses. However, faith is not of the law. The faith of Abraham was a matter of trusting what he heard from God and his obedience proved his faith. The act of moving to a foreign country according to the word of the Lord was Abraham's work of faith, which is miles apart from the works of the law, meaning that a person can impersonate the works of the law without faith in God, but faith performs the works of God. See also: circumcision; Rom 4,9-11; 85m

Rom 4,9-11

(85m) Thy kingdom come >> Belief >> Treating the knowledge of God as fact >> Believing the Son by obeying the Father >> Obeying the old covenant through the new – Note how careful Paul was in articulating his thesis for the entire book of Romans, saying that Abraham believed God first, and then he was circumcised, happening precisely in that order. Paul addressed this for the simple reason that Israel imprudently reversed this order so that circumcision was equated to faith. Instead of getting circumcised because they believed, they got circumcised to find favor with God. They circumcised the infant on the eighth day, and later the child was expected to believe in God, and so they saw the sequence that circumcision was first and believing was second, but it didn’t happen that way with Abraham. They ignored him and based their doctrine on personal experience, and changed their statement of faith to this: 'We believe in God because we are circumcised.' In other words, they put their trust in circumcision instead of in God. Circumcision symbolizes faith, but it does not cause faith; it had no magic powers to make one believe, yet this is how Israel learned to view circumcision. Note what Paul wrote in Gal 5-4, that if they get circumcised under the premise of seeking favor with God, they will be severed from Christ; that is, they will become like the foreskin that gets thrown into the waste basket. See also: circumcision; Rom 4,19-25; 12c

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11-14 and he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness of the faith which he had while uncircumcised, so that he might be the father of all who believe without being circumcised, that righteousness might be credited to them, 12 and the father of circumcision to those who not only are of the circumcision, but who also follow in the steps of the faith of our father Abraham which he had while uncircumcised. 13 For the promise to Abraham or to his descendants that he would be heir of the world was not through the Law, but through the righteousness of faith. 14 For if those who are of the Law are heirs, faith is made void and the promise is nullified; 

 

Rom 4,11-17

(210ia) Salvation >> Jews and gentiles are being saved >> Salvation is from the Jews >> Jews are believers >> Gentile Christians have a Jewish religion – In the first century the Roman Church had a sense of indebtedness to the Jews, but 200 years later they led the persecution of the Jew in the Roman coliseum where gladiators cut them to pieces and fed them to the lions, and then later they were sent to German death camps in WWII. The Jews suffered greatly at the hands of the gentiles over the last two millennia, but for Christians to persecute the Jew is completely unconscionable, for the Jew is the basis of the Christian faith. In fact, there is no reason to believe that anti-Semites are Christians. Some have very detailed and confusing excuses for hating the Jews, mostly based on genealogy as to who is the true Jew, and their explanations continue forever, but no matter how much “research” they have done to justify their hatred, none of their facts are relevant. When a Jew proclaims his legacy, some are prepared to argue with him, even though the Jewish race is the most documented in the world. Many could trace back what tribe they descended all the way back to Jacob. In fact the book of Revelation says there will be 144,000 Jews, twelve thousand from every tribe. Christians have an obligation to the Jewish people to hope for their salvation, because they will eventually return to their faith by an act of God as the greatest sign of endtimes. Paul was very emphatic about this in the book of Romans chapter eleven.

Rom 4,13-22

(71g) Authority >> Ordained by God >> Ordained by His sovereign will >> God chooses you

Rom 4,13-18

(36g) Gift >> God opens His home to us >> Inheritance >> We heirs through faith – Paul came from a pharisaical background, which had a works oriented culture that saw no need for faith. In fact, when we go back through the Old Testament, the subject of faith was merely implied. The old covenant said, ‘I believe because I obey,’ whereas the new covenant says, ‘I obey because I believe.’ He gave circumcision as a sign for those who believe, and then gave the Ten Commandments to obey. We need to realize the old covenant was not based on law, but on the promise made to Abraham that he would be the father of many nations. That is, the old covenant was not based on Abraham believing, but on him LEAVING his homeland to live in a foreign land that none of his ancestors knew. In other words, the old covenant was based on Abraham obeying the Holy Spirit, which is the very definition of new covenant faith. When we look at the actual words that the Spirit said to Abraham, it wasn’t something he could have just believed; He said to Abram, “Go forth from your country, and from your relatives and from your father's house, to the land which I will show you” (Genesis 12-1). Had he not gone, it would have been impossible to make the argument that Abram believed God. He could have believed that it was God who spoke to Him, but without picking up stakes and leaving, faith would not have materialized. The difference between the old and new covenants is only skin deep, for the Holy Spirit who spoke to Abraham commanding him to leave his homeland and go to a place that he did not know is the same Holy Spirit who speaks to us.

Rom 4-13,14

(151b) Witness >> Validity of the Father >> New Testament bears witness of the Old >> The Patriarchs >> Abraham >> Promises to Abraham -- These verses go with verses 18-22

(174d) Works of the devil >> The religion of witchcraft >> Form of godliness >> Self righteousness >> Trying to please God by your own good works -- These verses go with verses 1-5

Rom 4-13

(231d) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> Mystery of godliness >> God’s grace is the mystery of godliness >> Having favor with God is a mystery -- This verse goes with verse 16

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15-17 for the Law brings about wrath, but where there is no law, there also is no violation. 16 For this reason it is by faith, in order that it may be in accordance with grace, so that the promise will be guaranteed to all the descendants, not only to those who are of the Law, but also to those who are of the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all, 17 (as it is written, "A FATHER OF MANY NATIONS HAVE I MADE YOU") in the presence of Him whom he believed, even God, who gives life to the dead and calls into being that which does not exist. 

 

Rom 4-15

(52c) Judgment >> Judging Church with world >> Law judges sin >> Power of sin is the law

(118k) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Freedom >> Law of the spirit >> Law of liberty -- This statement indicates that the law is no longer in affect. Many in the Church today interpret this in the sense that the law has been abolished, but a far more accurate interpretation says that we inadvertently fulfill its requirements through faith. We can look at it like a train that has switched tracks and is now riding on a new set of rails that leads to the same destination. God has laid a new, better set of tracks that run through tunnels instead of going over impassible mountain ranges, and that run across bridges instead of through deep, rugged valleys. The law is still in affect, not for us but for those who reject the faith, so the law is associated with condemnation, whereas faith is the law of liberty and pertains to our justification. 

Rom 4,16-25

(32l) Gift of God >> Father will honor your devotion to Him >> He will honor your faith

Rom 4-16

(31h) Gift of God >> Grace >> Salvation >> The ministry of reconciliation – Our new covenant relatedness to God is in accordance with grace, so His promise will be granted, “not only to those who are of the law, but also to those who are of the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all.” Paul was referring to both Jews who sought justification through the law and to gentiles who believe in justification by faith. God spoke to Abraham and told Him to go to a foreign land and to set down roots that would become the land of his descendants. That which is in accordance with grace transcends the law, which is static and speaks only that which is written, whereas God’s grace is dynamic, defined as the Holy Spirit who speaks the mind of Christ, which is different for each person, and is able to change our lives and influence people around us.

(231d) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> Mystery of godliness >> God’s grace is the mystery of godliness >> Having favor with God is a mystery -- This verse goes with verses 19-22

Rom 4-17

(38c) Judgment >> Jesus defeated death (Satan) >> Resurrection overcomes death -- This verse goes with verses 23-25

(85d) Thy kingdom come >> Words that are spoken in faith >> Powerful when spoken by the Spirit >> The spoken word of God – Paul took this passage from Genesis 17-4, referring to Abraham; God told him that He would become the father of many nations. In the days of Abraham the population of the world had been wiped out by Noah’s flood, so there were not many people alive compared to today. It wasn’t just Abraham, then, who became the father of many nations, but many at that time became fathers of nations. The distinction between all the other fathers of the world and Abraham was that his genealogy was carefully recorded to trace exactly which nations proceeded from him. Consequently, Abraham and his family are known from that era. Since God commanded Moses to record Israel’s genealogical roots, God deserves the credit for creating the nation of Israel through Abraham and Sarah. Paul added that He also gives life to the dead, which is in reference to Isaac, who did not die after God commanded Abraham to sacrifice his son, as though he came back to life as a type of resurrection, who is now a symbol of Christ. God has his methods of calling into being that which does not exist, calling Israel into being through its genealogical records and creating faith in Abraham when he obeyed God's voice, just like the stars and planets obeyed His voice when He created the universe. The stars of heaven, therefore, represent the children of God in that they were born in the same manner as Abraham, through the voice of God.

(150h) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Works of the Church bear witness of Jesus >> Speak the word of the Spirit >> Speaking the words that God speaks – The voice of God and the word of God are the same, except for one main difference; we can read the Bible and it will tell us what God had spoken in the past, but the voice of God speaks what God is saying right now. It is not the written word that holds His power, but the voice of God. In fact, without the voice of God the written word would be nothing more than organized ink blots on a page. A person can read the Bible and God can use it to speak to him by His Spirit and be born-again. However, it wasn’t the Bible that saved him but the voice of God speaking to his heart through the Bible. The Bible is just a tool God uses to reproduce His voice in the hearts of men. His voice comes from heaven, whereas the Bible rests on a table. Earthly things are only of limited value, but heavenly things are infinite and eternal, so when a person is born-again, the benefit of his salvation is infinite and eternal. We can’t say that about the Bible. Lots of people read the Bible and they get nothing from it, because they never heard the voice of God speak to their hearts.

(212a) Sovereignty >> God is infinite >> He is the creator >> The creation glorifies God >> The creation exemplifies God’s sovereignty

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18 In hope against hope he believed, so that he might become a father of many nations according to that which had been spoken, "SO SHALL YOUR DESCENDANTS BE."

 

Rom 4,18-22

(87h) Thy kingdom come >> Obedience is logical to your spirit >> Obey God to spite your carnal mind – “With respect to the promise, Abraham did not waver in unbelief but grew strong in faith, giving glory to God,” but he also got tired of waiting and listened to his wife, Sarah, who gave him her maid, Hagar, and she conceived and brought forth a son, Ishmael; he was son of the bondwoman (Gal 4-22,23). Abraham tried to force the hand of God, but this never works. Abraham finally had a son just like God said and so met the condition for the promise, but the promise was to come through Sarah, not Hagar. Only Sarah’s offspring could satisfy the promise for two reasons: (1) she was his wife, and since Hagar was not his wife, the child was illegitimate, referring to the value God places on marriage. (2) The promise was also to come by way of a miracle to validate God’s plan. Therefore, if God’s purpose and will for us is miraculous, then the signature of God is not written in our lives.

(98i) Thy kingdom come >> Endurance (Thorn in the flesh) >> (Faith à Suffering [Integrity] à Glory [Reward]) – Every step that Abraham took was in obedience to the word that God spoke to him. He was willing to do God’s will, and when he did, God seemed to play mind games with him. The promise was that he would become the father of many nations, implying that Sarah would bear a child. Before God spoke to Abraham, who was already married to Sarah, he obviously knew she was barren. Before he packed his bags he knew God’s promise would take a miracle, yet he went anyway, depending on a miracle to fill the promise, and Sarah just kept getting older. He became impatient and questioned God’s promise. Although Abraham became very wealthy along his travels (traveling shepherds to better than static ones because of the fresh fields they regularly encounter), which may not have happened had he stayed home, becoming wealthy was not part of the agreement; Abraham needed a son. Meanwhile, God was thinking that if He had not called Abraham, Sarah would have remained barren. If God made him wait and gave him a child at the end of his life, is that wrong? God alone has what we need, and Abraham needed Sarah to conceive.

(102m) Thy kingdom come >> Faithfulness (Loyalty) >> Loyalty is unswerving – It wasn’t wrong of God to make Abraham wait; it wasn’t evil; it was simply God’s choice, and he had a reason for it. God loves faith; He loves to watch us believe in Him; He is creating opportunities for us to rack up treasures in heaven. This may not sound like good news when we are going through trials and temptations, but in fact it is good news that God would require us to believe in Him. The Bible teaches that God tests His people to see what is in them, and so God tested Abraham to see if he would believe in Him under trial. It doesn’t say that Satan made accusation against Abraham like he did in the book of Job, though this may well have been the case. If God wants to test us, He will do it. When we enter hardships and difficulties as a result of following the Holy Spirit and doing his will in a lifelong ministry in the Lord, those are times we rack up rewards for eternal life. He tests us to make sure our heart is with Him. He already knows those who are His, so He could just look into the future with various scenarios and watch how they end without making us go through them, but God considers that pointless. He makes us show Him in the real world, because one day he will reveal His new creation to us, and it too will be very real.

(103m) Thy kingdom come >> Purifying process >> Purified by circumstances >> Purified through faith -- God allows time to test our visions, and for this reason it isn't always easy to believe in Him, depending on our circumstances. Sometimes the easiest thing to believe is the hardest thing to do. For example, believing your wife will someday have a baby is relatively easy, but not when she is both barren and very old. Nevertheless, it is possible to believe this even under those circumstances. In fact, it is possible to believe anything, but not everything we believe is true. Abraham believed the truth; he believed what God said, and everything God says is true and comes true if we continue to believe in Him. Abraham was minding his own business one day, when God spoke to Him and began telling him all the things he would do and all the things that would happen to him in the future. He didn’t do anything to be chosen; rather, God sought him and commanded Him to pack up his things and sojourned to a land that he did not know with a promise that he would become the father of many nations. The purpose and calling of God fundamentally changed his life and started something new, and if we listen to His voice, He will change our lives and start something new that will never end.

(107a) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Hearing from God >> Word creates faith >> Receiving unction from God -- The term "Rhema" means to hear the voice of the Spirit in our heart, as opposed to merely reading the Bible, though the two should complement each other. This often happens while we are reading the Bible, when we get a sense of inspiration. A rhema is one that typically adds direction to our life, changing it forever, more than an epiphany.

(114d) Thy kingdom come >> Faith >> Working the grace of God >> Obeying the Holy Spirit >> Obeying the revelation from heaven >> Obeying the revelation of God’s word The voice of the Holy Spirit is the very essence of Christianity. We learn about God in the Bible, but we actually live out our Christianity through the Spirit. Once we acquire the hearing ear, we pick up the good works that God is calling us to do and run with them, and whatever we do according to His voice we will do in a state of rest. It will no longer be us doing them but God working through us. We will be pleasing to the Lord, because then we will be doing His will and not doing good works in search of His favor. In this way God will initiate our works as a matter of obedience that is guaranteed to bear fruit. We will be inspirational to others and our works will have the effect that God intended. He wants every aspect of our lives to be a product of the Holy Spirit working in us.

(147b) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Jesus’ works bear witness of Himself >> Remember the Father’s miracles

(151b) Witness >> Validity of the Father >> New Testament bears witness of the Old >> The Patriarchs >> Abraham >> Promises to Abraham -- These verses go with verses 13&14. Paul credits Abraham as the father of our faith (v16), not Moses. Abraham is our old covenant example of the Christian walk, and he lived before Moses, which makes him the first to walk by the voice of the Holy Spirit. Moses too lived like Abraham, by a word that God had given him, but when Moses spoke the word to the children of Israel, the unction of the truth was lost in translation. Consequently, Paul was very adamant against those who would live by the law as a measure of faith, but he elevated Abraham, not as an analogy for something else, but as a perfect example in the way we ought to live. To live like Abraham is to live by faith, by the word that God would reveal to us. The Israelites were not given the word directly from God, but Moses spoke to them as a mediator between them and God, though this was not God's initial intent. Rather, He wanted to speak to the people directly, but the Children of Israel knew they would not be faithful and knew that if they received the word directly from God and to disobeyed it, would exponentially increase their judgment, and they were right (Ex 20,18-21). Comparatively speaking then, Moses lived by the faith of Abraham, whereas the Israelites obeyed God through Moses. God connected with Abraham and Moses and gave them ministries that lasted their whole lives, and God wants to connect with us in a similar way and give us life-long ministries too.

(194a) Die to self (Process of substitution) >> Turn from sin to God >> Run to God >> Run the race that is set before us

(205j) Salvation >> Salvation is based on God’s promises >> Faith versus works >> The faith of God versus the faith of men >> Faith is the law of righteousness -- These verses go with verses 1-16

(234g) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Invest in the kingdom >> Sold out >> Placing no boundaries on your commitment to God >> Completely given over to the will of God

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19-25 Without becoming weak in faith he contemplated his own body, now as good as dead since he was about a hundred years old, and the deadness of Sarah's womb; 20 yet, with respect to the promise of God, he did not waver in unbelief but grew strong in faith, giving glory to God, 21 and being fully assured that what God had promised, He was able also to perform. 22 Therefore IT WAS ALSO CREDITED TO HIM AS RIGHTEOUSNESS. 23 Now not for his sake only was it written that it was credited to him, 24 but for our sake also, to whom it will be credited, as those who believe in Him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead, 25 He who was delivered over because of our transgressions, and was raised because of our justification.

 

Rom 4,19-25 

(12c) Servant >> Examples of God’s people >> Abraham is our example of faith – Paul used Abraham as the icon of the Christian faith, using this passage, "Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness" (Genesis 15-6). Then James made the comment in his epistle that if Abraham never obeyed God, it would have been tantamount to unbelief (Jm 2,21-26). James' comment departed from Paul's definition of “faith” and instead alluded to trust, since it had to do with works. Abraham obeyed and therefore believed is what James taught, corresponding with the conventional opinion of faith that states: 'I was circumcised, therefore I believe.' In contrast, the teaching of Paul states just the opposite: 'I believe, therefore I was circumcised.' According to Paul, believing God is where he obtained the confirmation of righteousness. That is, Abraham was made righteous before he took his first step; In other words, he didn’t achieve the righteousness of God through obedience but through pledging his life to the will of God. This was inherently righteous and was much like a marriage relationship. See also: circumcision; Rom 4,9-13; 190h

(86b) Thy kingdom come >> Belief >> Treating the knowledge of God as fact >> Believing is the result of the resurrection

(102l) Thy kingdom come >> Faithfulness (Loyalty) >> Tried and true >> Faithfulness – Abraham trusted God along the way, and God blessed him wherever he went, even when it put him in precarious situations. Abraham did not cherish God’s word on the basis of how it may benefit him but that it was the only righteous thing he could do. In this we maintain the definition of “faith” being equal to trust, which is the essence of saving faith. Abraham believed God, and in this way he obtained His righteousness; and then he obeyed Him, and in that completed his faith. Abraham’s righteous acts did not save him but the righteousness of faith that he possessed before he took his first step did, and then his obedience completed his faith; thus he pioneered faith as he dedicated himself to God’s cause. This understanding of the Scriptures satisfies both Paul and James, and so we see that they both appreciated each other’s views.

(233h) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Seeking the glory of God >> Seek His glory without wavering >> Seek His glory by faith – Paul equated the life of Abraham with the life of Christ in that as God commanded Abraham to do a very difficult thing, so He commanded His Son to do a very difficult thing, and both obtained in the righteousness of God. Jesus went to the cross as Abraham sojourned to a foreign land. When we put these two together, the horrible torture of the cross with Abraham’s wanderings, they don’t appear to have much in common, until we come to the understanding that when Abraham heard the voice of God, all his plans and ideas and visions for the future had to die, and he had to replace them all with God's plan and purpose for his life. Hence, when we believe in God and trust Him for our salvation, there is a death process involved. Everything we trusted and believed and all our plans and visions for the future must die, because God is calling us to a new purpose and directing our feet on a new path. We haven’t yet made a move, and Paul says that we have already obtained God's righteousness simply by pledging our lives to Him.

Rom 4,19-22

(81f) Thy kingdom come >> Pray without ceasing >> Obedience through continuous prayer

(122a) Thy kingdom come >> Manifestations of faith >> Confidence in God >> Confidence in the word of God – Had God not called Abraham or if he didn’t follow God's voice, he would have never had a child through his wife, Sarah, because she was barren. It was a miracle that she conceived. God wanted to communicate that though conceiving Isaac had something to do with the natural means of conception and childbirth, which is a miracle in its own right, Isaac was a miracle upon a miracle. That is, it had just as much to do with God. Not only was Isaac a miracle, but every step along the way that Abraham took was miraculous in that his path was ordered by the Lord. When we seek the promise land and reach our destination, we will hear Him say, “Well done, good and faithful slave. You were faithful with a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your Master” (Mat 25-21). Those of us who know and love God, that is all we want to hear. We don’t need a mansion or to be recognized among our peers. When God says those words to us, they will be etched into our innermost being, and they will become part of us, being how God will feel about us forever, and we will remember how we served Him, that though it didn't seem glorious, it was to God, for we pleased Him through our faith. Abraham appeared incognito as just another man walking down a dirt road with his wife and cattle; it didn’t look very glorious, but Abraham had favor with God. Each of us desires favor with God, and we wonder what it would take to achieve it. First, we must seek the knowledge of His will (Col 1-9), and secondly, after we learn it, we must step into it, regardless of the daily grind.

(231d) Kingdom of God >> God’s kingdom is a living organism >> Mystery of godliness >> God’s grace is the mystery of godliness >> Having favor with God is a mystery -- These verses go with verse 5. There is a word that the Church flatly rejects in connection with the Scriptures, “performance”. If anyone mentions this word, they say we have a performance-based gospel. They are deathly afraid of this idea, and within the proper context, they should be afraid. Grace is devoid of works, but after we get saved everything changes. Now that the Holy Spirit is dwelling in us, He enables us to work with Him in order to produce acts of righteousness for Jesus sake, but the Church chooses not to believe this, preferring rather to remain stuck on the day of their salvation. Whatever date they got saved, that is the day in which they live for the rest of their lives, refusing to mature past that point. They say all of our works are as filthy rags (Isaiah 64-6), and that was true prior to salvation, but after God saved us, we have become “His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them” (Eph 2-10).

Rom 4-19,20

(232b) Kingdom of God >> Pursuing the kingdom >> Seeking the kingdom >> Count the cost >> The cost is more than you can imagine so don’t count – Had God told Abraham everything in advance that he would wander through life until he was an old man, waiting to have a single child, and that all the promises God made to him would come to pass only after he was dead, it is unlikely Abraham would have done what God commanded him. He calls us in a similar manner; He doesn’t tell us things in advance, but makes us promises, and so we embark on a life-long journey with Him, seeking fulfillment of the things He promised. We hear His calling deep in our hearts; we sense the direction in our lives coming from God, and we feel His conviction tweaking our direction, and the process is fraught with inner toil. We sense something about ourselves that needs correction, and we don’t know what we must do to stay on course with Him. All we can do is follow His small, still voice. God has spoken and revealed Himself and asked us to follow Him and to accomplish His work, and He only gave us the first step, just like He did with Abraham, and that step led to the next, until forty years later we look back and realize that we never would have done what we did if we weren’t following God. We look at some of the accomplishments that we’ve made and some of the ways that people have benefited from our lives, and we say that none of these things would have happened if we weren’t following Him. Sarah was barren before God called her husband, and so Abraham would have been childless. He could have adopted or had a surrogate child like he had with Hagar, but Abraham was walking after the promises of God and none of these things fulfilled the promise. Very similar things are happening in our lives, and the cost to us is far beyond anything we could imagine; yet the promise is greater and the rewards are eternal, and so we continue. The greatest part about following God is coming to know Him.

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Rom 4-20

(161b) Works of the devil >> Essential characteristics >> Satan’s attitude determines our direction >> Wandering from the character of God >> Wandering from the faith

(203b) Denying Christ >> Dishonor God by your unbelief

Rom 4-21

(213d) Sovereignty >> God is infinite >> God is all powerful >> Christ subjects the creation to Himself -- Having never seen Him, Abraham believed in the power and integrity of God and was convinced by merely hearing His voice that He was capable of performing any miracle and fulfilling every promise. That denotes a powerful voice that Abraham heard, yet it described as a small, still voice. There is a way to determine whether we have heard the voice of God: it shakes us to our core. Mary, the mother of Jesus is another icon of the Bible who had the faith of Abraham, who received a promise that she would bear a son, only instead of the miracle being about a barren womb and her age (as it was with Sarah) it was about the method of conception and the child who would result. The angel, Gabriel, visited Mary and told her what was about to happen to her, and her response is in Lk 1-38, "Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her." People know when God has spoken to them, and they are careful to do what He said. 

Rom 4,22-24

(141i) Witness >> Validity of Jesus Christ >> Old Testament bears witness to the new >> Old Testament is for our instruction >> Teaching from the Old Testament

Rom 4,23-25

(38c) Judgment >> Jesus defeated death (Satan) >> Resurrection overcomes death -- These verses go with verse 17

Rom 4-25

(209i) Salvation >> The salvation of God >> Jesus is our sacrifice >> Jesus paid the price for us >> Jesus paid our ransom with His own blood

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