What does it mean to be in right standing before God? In some ways, this is the question for all religions. How we answer this question will determine what we worship. If we believe that living a good life places us in God’s good graces, then we will work really hard to make sure that we live better than everyone else around us (which is a moving target). If we believe that being faithful to the rules (what we do and what we don’t do) provides right standing before God, then we will do our best to follow the diving directives. Let me warn you, this is not an easy practice.
Paul speaks to this issue in his letter to the Romans. He points to the father of many faiths. Certainly, if anyone was in right standing with God, it was Abraham. Paul clears up a common misconception. Abraham was not made right with God through what he did. While he was certainly faithful to God, he was not perfect. He made mistakes, just like us. So how did Abraham receive right standing before God?
Paul asserts that Abraham’s righteous was through his faith.
(Romans 4:18 NIV11-GK) Against all hope, Abraham in hope believed
Paul continues to describe how Abraham was
(Romans 4:21–22 NIV11-GK) fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised. This is why “it was credited to him as righteousness.”
That is how Abraham was placed in right standing before God. The cool thing is that it does not stop with Abraham. Paul relates to the Romans,
(Romans 4:23–25 NIV11-GK) The words “it was credited to him” were written not for him alone, but also for us, to whom God will credit righteousness—for us who believe in him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead. He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification.
Join us on Sunday as we explore Romans 4:13-25. As we recognize our right standing as based in Jesus’ death and resurrection, our worship is directed toward Him. This week, we will talk about faith and the role it plays in our standing before God.