Woah. 75. That's a big number. That's 3/4 of the way to 100. I have these little "Wow, I've done a lot of NIPTO..." moments. Now is one of them. I mean. 3/4ths to 100... 100 is 1/3 of a year... kind of. When you're rounding. I just got a calculator and did the math 121(.6666 repeating... 122?) is the "1/3" point of the year.
I went to see Enter Laughing last night at GHS (The local high school) with my friends. It was fun. The kid who used to live across the street, the kid my sister and I would play baseball with in our front yards on lazy summer days, was the main guy. It was kind of funny to see him acting. He's a good actor. It's just weird to see him on stage. He's going to be the Tin Man this fall in The Wizard of Oz. I love GHS's musical theater. It's always good. I went to see Thoroughly Modern Millie twice last year. It was that good. Or maybe I'm just that weird. The Wizard of Oz should be good this year. I'm looking forward to it. :)
1What then shall we say that Abraham, our forefather, discovered in this matter? (Righteousness through faith) 2If, in fact, Abraham was justified by works, he had something to boast about—but not before God. 3What does the Scripture say? "Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness."
I like this. Abraham simply believed God and he was counted as righteous. He didn't have to do anything fancy. He just believed.
4Now when a man works, his wages are not credited to him as a gift, but as an obligation.
Aka they pay you not because they want to, but because they have to. You do the work in exchange for money.
5However, to the man who does not work but trusts God who justifies the wicked, his faith is credited as righteousness.
When you work for God, you shouldn't really work. You should trust him. You should believe him. You should believe the promises he gives you.
6David says the same thing when he speaks of the blessedness of the man to whom God credits righteousness apart from works:
7"Blessed are they
whose transgressions are forgiven,
whose sins are covered.
8Blessed is the man
whose sin the Lord will never count against him." (Psalm 32:1-2)
Those who believe not necessarily in God's works, but just in God in general will be blessed. His faith will be credited as righteousness. I think.
9Is this blessedness only for the circumcised, or also for the uncircumcised? We have been saying that Abraham's faith was credited to him as righteousness. 10Under what circumstances was it credited? Was it after he was circumcised, or before? It was not after, but before!
Good point. Abraham was credited as righteous before he was circumcised. That had to throw the church into some kind of uproar. I mean... They were all about following the law to a T (kind of) and circumcision and stuff like that. But this had to have rocked their world. I mean... to be counted as righteous before you were circumcised? Kind of unheard of.
11And he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness that he had by faith while he was still uncircumcised. So then, he is the father of all who believe but have not been circumcised, in order that righteousness might be credited to them.
Abraham received the "sign of circumcision" as a seal of righteousness while he was uncircumcised. Not sure how to phrase the last part of what I want to say... He was the head of the uncircumcised people so that righteousness could still be credited to them. Kind of paraphrasing what the verse says...
12And he is also the father of the circumcised who not only are circumcised but who also walk in the footsteps of the faith that our father Abraham had before he was circumcised.
Okay, so he's the father of the uncircumcised. But he's also the father of the circumcised who are faithful. So basically, Abraham's got everyone covered. Nice, right?
13It was not through law that Abraham and his offspring received the promise that he would be heir of the world, but through the righteousness that comes by faith.
Abraham didn't receive his promise from the law. Or by following the law. He received his promise through faith. Sweet... h
14For if those who live by law are heirs, faith has no value and the promise is worthless, 15because law brings wrath. And where there is no law there is no transgression.
So. If everyone who lived by the law were heirs, faith would be worthless. And God's promises would be worthless.
I'm not quite sure I fully get this. So..... I'm going to leave it at that... There's something about wrath... and that's just confusing to me. I'll have to ask Brandon about it on Sunday... or my dad tonight. I'll get back to you on that when I have an answer.
16Therefore, the promise comes by faith, so that it may be by grace and may be guaranteed to all Abraham's offspring—not only to those who are of the law but also to those who are of the faith of Abraham. He is the father of us all.
I like this. The promise comes only by faith and grace so that it is promised to all of his descendants. But you gotta have faith. Interesting... very interesting.
17As it is written: "I have made you a father of many nations." He is our father in the sight of God, in whom he believed—the God who gives life to the dead and calls things that are not as though they were.
Father Abraham had many sons. Many sons had father Abraham. I am one of them. And so are you. So let's all praise the Lord (right arm). =P
Abraham is our "father" because he believed in God. There were some pretty slim chances that Abraham (100 years old) was going to have a child with his wife, Sarah (90 years old). Yeah. Can't really imagine that. But Abraham believed that it was going to happen and it did.
I like the last part too: The God who gives life to the dead and calls things that are not as though they were.
The last part is kinda confusing, but it's also kinda sweet. I mean he calls things that are not as though they were. Present... past. It's weird. But sweet all at the same time.
Okay. I think I'm done with Romans 4 for today.
This is a song that we sang at Encounter62 last week. And we danced to it at Pirates vs ninjas (we're not allowed to say "ninja" in the youth room until next year when the (possible next year team? I think so...) SPARTANS compete against the Pirates. (Let's just say that Paige&Katie came up with that last night and I completely agree that it should be our team. :D (Yes. Two teenage girls came up with the Spartans idea.))) (There are four sets of parentheses in that paragraph. This is the 5th. I'm stopping now. ENJOY Our God by Chris Tomlin!
Hope you have a good Friday!