PDA

View Full Version : Abraham Believed God!



RogerW
Apr 28th 2009, 06:08 PM
Ro 4:3 For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.

Ga 3:6 Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.

Jas 2:23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.

The Scripture tells us that “Abraham believed God, and it was counted/accounted/imputed to him for righteousness.” Does this mean that Abraham, while spiritually dead in trespasses and sins, while in bondage to Satan, sin and death is able from within himself to achieve saving faith whereby God declares him righteous and His friend? That cannot be! If Abraham’s ability to have faith (believing) comes from within, then his salvation is the result of his work and not of grace.

The Scripture tells us that if Abraham were justified by works, he would have something to glory in, but not before God (Ro. 4:2). To him who works for salvation his reward could not be counted of grace, but of debt. In other words if saving faith came from Abraham, then he was saved by his work (of faith) but not of grace, and God would be obliged to pay Abraham for what he had accomplished (righteous faith) in saving himself.

How do we reconcile this apparent contradiction? How are we to understand that Abraham could believe (have faith) God, and his believing be credited to him for righteousness? We find our answer in Paul’s letter to the Galatians. The Galatians were being influenced by the Judaizers’ gospel, teaching that justification before God is found in keeping the law (in our day it would be doing good works). Paul sought to prevent these young Christians from embracing a false gospel and to encourage them to find their spiritual freedom in Christ alone, and not through works of the flesh (Gal 5:1). This false gospel became a hindrance to the Galatians obedience to God, and they began to believe that salvation was not of grace alone, but also by good works (for them keeping parts of the Mosaic law).

Ga 3:8 And the scripture, [B]foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.
Ga 3:9 So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.

God told Abraham that the Messiah would descend through him. Through Abraham’s descendent all the nations of the world would be blessed. Abraham “heard” God, and believed through the hearing in the same way every believer comes to have saving faith. “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Ro 10:17) Some “hear” the gospel and remain in unbelief because they are not given the gift of saving faith (Eph 2:8-9) “For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.” (Heb 4:2)

Now we can understand how Abraham believing (having faith) God is counted unto him for righteousness. All of God, none of Abraham. Salvation is of the LORD! (Jonah 2:9)

Many Blessings,
RW

John146
Apr 28th 2009, 10:10 PM
Ro 4:3 For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.
Ga 3:6 Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.

Jas 2:23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.
The Scripture tells us that “Abraham believed God, and it was counted/accounted/imputed to him for righteousness.” Does this mean that Abraham, while spiritually dead in trespasses and sins, while in bondage to Satan, sin and death is able from within himself to achieve saving faith whereby God declares him righteous and His friend? That cannot be! If Abraham’s ability to have faith (believing) comes from within, then his salvation is the result of his work and not of grace. Says you, but not scripture. We are saved by God's grace through having faith in Christ. It is only because of God's grace that we have an opportunity to believe in Christ so that we won't perish but have everlasting life.


The Scripture tells us that if Abraham were justified by works, he would have something to glory in, but not before God (Ro. 4:2). To him who works for salvation his reward could not be counted of grace, but of debt. In other words if saving faith came from Abraham, then he was saved by his work (of faith) but not of grace, and God would be obliged to pay Abraham for what he had accomplished (righteous faith) in saving himself. Do you not know that Romans 4:2 is speaking of the works of the law? All you have to do is look at the previous chapter to see the context.

Romans 3
26To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus. 27Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith.
28Therefore we conclude that [B]a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.
29Is he the God of the Jews only? is he not also of the Gentiles? Yes, of the Gentiles also:
30Seeing it is one God, which shall justify the circumcision by faith, and uncircumcision through faith.
31Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law.

In Romans 4:2-3 Paul reiterates what he said in Romans 3:26-28. No one is justified by works of the law but instead is justified by faith in Christ.

Faith is certainly not a work of the law.


How do we reconcile this apparent contradiction?We don't need to because there's no contradiction. We're not justified by works of the law but we are justified by faith in Christ.


How are we to understand that Abraham could believe (have faith) God, and his believing be credited to him for righteousness? We find our answer in Paul’s letter to the Galatians. The Galatians were being influenced by the Judaizers’ gospel, teaching that justification before God is found in keeping the law (in our day it would be doing good works). Paul sought to prevent these young Christians from embracing a false gospel and to encourage them to find their spiritual freedom in Christ alone, and not through works of the flesh (Gal 5:1). This false gospel became a hindrance to the Galatians obedience to God, and they began to believe that salvation was not of grace alone, but also by good works (for them keeping parts of the Mosaic law).

Ga 3:8 And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.
Ga 3:9 So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.

God told Abraham that the Messiah would descend through him. Through Abraham’s descendent all the nations of the world would be blessed. Abraham “heard” God, and believed through the hearing in the same way every believer comes to have saving faith. “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Ro 10:17) Some “hear” the gospel and remain in unbelief because they are not given the gift of saving faith (Eph 2:8-9) “For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.” (Heb 4:2)

Now we can understand how Abraham believing (having faith) God is counted unto him for righteousness. All of God, none of Abraham. Salvation is of the LORD! (Jonah 2:9)

Many Blessings,
RWNone of Abraham? Is man not responsible for anything, Roger? It specifically says that Abraham believed God and his faith was credited to him for righteousness. It doesn't say anything about God believing for him.

Ixthus
Apr 28th 2009, 10:26 PM
Our salvation was given to us by God. In order to accept it we must accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior (in other words "have faith") Therefore we did not earn it, but merely accepting the gift.

Butch5
Apr 28th 2009, 10:28 PM
Ro 4:3 For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.

Ga 3:6 Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.

Jas 2:23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.

The Scripture tells us that “Abraham believed God, and it was counted/accounted/imputed to him for righteousness.” Does this mean that Abraham, while spiritually dead in trespasses and sins, while in bondage to Satan, sin and death is able from within himself to achieve saving faith whereby God declares him righteous and His friend? That cannot be! If Abraham’s ability to have faith (believing) comes from within, then his salvation is the result of his work and not of grace.

The Scripture tells us that if Abraham were justified by works, he would have something to glory in, but not before God (Ro. 4:2). To him who works for salvation his reward could not be counted of grace, but of debt. In other words if saving faith came from Abraham, then he was saved by his work (of faith) but not of grace, and God would be obliged to pay Abraham for what he had accomplished (righteous faith) in saving himself.

How do we reconcile this apparent contradiction? How are we to understand that Abraham could believe (have faith) God, and his believing be credited to him for righteousness? We find our answer in Paul’s letter to the Galatians. The Galatians were being influenced by the Judaizers’ gospel, teaching that justification before God is found in keeping the law (in our day it would be doing good works). Paul sought to prevent these young Christians from embracing a false gospel and to encourage them to find their spiritual freedom in Christ alone, and not through works of the flesh (Gal 5:1). This false gospel became a hindrance to the Galatians obedience to God, and they began to believe that salvation was not of grace alone, but also by good works (for them keeping parts of the Mosaic law).

Ga 3:8 And the scripture, [B]foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.
Ga 3:9 So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.

God told Abraham that the Messiah would descend through him. Through Abraham’s descendent all the nations of the world would be blessed. Abraham “heard” God, and believed through the hearing in the same way every believer comes to have saving faith. “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Ro 10:17) Some “hear” the gospel and remain in unbelief because they are not given the gift of saving faith (Eph 2:8-9) “For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.” (Heb 4:2)

Now we can understand how Abraham believing (having faith) God is counted unto him for righteousness. All of God, none of Abraham. Salvation is of the LORD! (Jonah 2:9)

Many Blessings,
RW

First, I would not consider good works, which we were created for, aw works of the Mosaic law. Second, God does not choose who has saving faith. The Scriptures clearly tell us that Christ gives light (understanding) to "every man that cometh into the world". Third you did not mention that James said that Abraham was justified when he obeyed God. You must overlook quite a few Scriptures to hold that opinion.

RogerW
Apr 28th 2009, 11:40 PM
Our salvation was given to us by God. In order to accept it we must accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior (in other words "have faith") Therefore we did not earn it, but merely accepting the gift.

Greetings Ixthus,

I'm a little confused by your reply. You said our salvation is given to us by God, but you also say we must accept the gift...what is the gift you are referring to? Is not salvation freely given as you have said, and not something that Christ merely offers for us to accept or reject? For that matter does not Eph 2:8,9 show us that even saving faith is not our own but the gift of God's grace?

Many Blessings,
RW

Partaker of Christ
Apr 29th 2009, 12:24 AM
Yes we all do have faith, but is that saving faith?
What about the disciples who walked with Jesus. How often did He say to them 'O you of little faith'
If they had little faith, then were did they get saving faith? What about doubting Thomas?


Heb 12:2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

What does 'author' mean?

Act 3:16 "And on the basis of faith in His name, it is the name of Jesus which has strengthened this man whom you see and know; and the faith which comes through Him has given him this perfect health in the presence of you all.

Rom 10:17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.

If it faith that we already have, then why 'faith comes'?

1Co 13:13 But now faith, hope, love, abide these three; but the greatest of these is love.

If the love we have comes from God, and the hope we have comes from God, then why not the faith?

Gal 3:23 But before faith came, we were kept in custody under the law, being shut up to the faith which was later to be revealed.

Gal 3:25 But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor

Eph 6:23 Peace be to the brethren, and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

James 2:5 Listen, my beloved brethren: did not God choose the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which He promised to those who love Him?

2Pe 1:1 Simon Peter, a bond-servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who have received a faith of the same kind as ours, by the righteousness of our God and Savior, Jesus Christ:

Peter say's he received a faith.

Jude 1:20 But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit,

How is our faith holy, except it comes from God?

Dani H
Apr 29th 2009, 12:33 AM
God doesn't need our works. He just wants ... us.

I think a person who really believes God to the point of drastic life changes (such as we see with Abraham) in the face of not all that much personal communication (although when it did happen, it was to the point and done in such a way that it stuck with him for years to come), nor the rich resource of the written Word to go by, is to be admired, in my book. We have to remember that these people back then didn't have all that much by way of written anything, and they didn't live in a community of others who believed likewise. They were lone dots on a map who marched to a totally different drum. And, the clincher, it was accounted to them for righteousness by a God who obviously has standards that are totally different from our own. I find that rather mindboggling, to be honest. And, that truly gives me hope as a child of Abraham by faith. There's a fella I don't mind associating myself with.

"You want what, God? Okay, you got it." :)

crossnote
Apr 29th 2009, 05:50 AM
Don't forget also that it's impossibe (gramatically) for these verses to teach that Abraham's faith was accounted for righteousness. The word "it" is a pronoun and as a basic rule, pronouns must modify a noun. What noun does it modify? Everyone who runs to this verse to say that our faith contributes to our salvation says that it modifies the word faith. Well obviously the word isn't used, the verb form of the word is used and that's "believed". But that's a verb.

So what does the pronoun "it" modify? The problem is that the word "it" is in the 3rd person singular. In the Greek, that can be translated as he, she, or it. It's the same Greek word. It should be translated as "He" not "it". He is obviously from the context of the sentence, refering to God.

Abraham believed God, and He was counted unto him for righteousness.

Abraham believed God, and He was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.

As you and the bible says, it's all God and nothing to do with man.

Mike

Also one other thing. The word "and" also can be translated as "for". Again, same Greek word.

Abraham believed God, for He was counted unto him for righteousness.

Abraham believed God, for He was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.

So these verses are to be understood as Abraham believed God because God was accounted to him for righteousness.

Mikey,
I am no Greek scholar but I am curious as to your source. Here are a couple of quotes (forgive the lack of Greek fonts) from Robertsons Word pictures on those two verses and he never mentions what you stated.

Rom 4:3
It was reckoned unto him for righteousness (elogisqh eiv dikaiosunhn). First aorist passive indicative of logizomai, old and common verb to set down accounts (literally or metaphorically). It was set down on the credit side of the ledger "for" (eiv as often) righteousness. What was set down? His believing God (episteusen tw qew).

Gal 3:6
It was reckoned unto him for righteousness (elogisqh eiv dikaiosunhn). First aorist passive indicative of logizomai. See on 1Co_13:5 for this old word. He quotes Gen_15:6 and uses it at length in Rom_4:3 ff. to prove that the faith of Abraham was reckoned "for" (eiv, good Koin‚ idiom though more common in LXX because of the Hebrew) righteousness before he was circumcised. James (Jam_2:23) quotes the same passage as proof of Abraham's obedience to God in offering up Isaac (beginning to offer him). Paul and James are discussing different episodes in the life of Abraham. Both are correct.

John146
Apr 29th 2009, 11:56 PM
Don't forget also that it's impossibe (gramatically) for these verses to teach that Abraham's faith was accounted for righteousness. The word "it" is a pronoun and as a basic rule, pronouns must modify a noun. What noun does it modify? Everyone who runs to this verse to say that our faith contributes to our salvation says that it modifies the word faith. Well obviously the word isn't used, the verb form of the word is used and that's "believed". But that's a verb.

So what does the pronoun "it" modify? The problem is that the word "it" is in the 3rd person singular. In the Greek, that can be translated as he, she, or it. It's the same Greek word. It should be translated as "He" not "it". He is obviously from the context of the sentence, refering to God.

Abraham believed God, and He was counted unto him for righteousness.

Abraham believed God, and He was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.

As you and the bible says, it's all God and nothing to do with man.

Mike

Also one other thing. The word "and" also can be translated as "for". Again, same Greek word.

Abraham believed God, for He was counted unto him for righteousness.

Abraham believed God, for He was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.

So these verses are to be understood as Abraham believed God because God was accounted to him for righteousness.

Tell me how you...view.. this verse:

Romans 4:5 But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.

This verse clearly says that to the one that works not but believes on God, that person's faith is counted for righteousness.

divaD
Apr 30th 2009, 01:07 AM
So these verses are to be understood as Abraham believed God because God was accounted to him for righteousness.


So, Abraham believed God? Why? Because God was accounted to him for righteousness. ???
What exactly does this mean? I have never heard of this in my life. No matter how I look at this conclusion, it does not compute. What am I missing here?

quiet dove
Apr 30th 2009, 02:36 AM
Ro 4:3 For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.
Ga 3:6 Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.

Jas 2:23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.
The Scripture tells us that “Abraham believed God, and it was counted/accounted/imputed to him for righteousness.” Does this mean that Abraham, while spiritually dead in trespasses and sins, while in bondage to Satan, sin and death is able from within himself to achieve saving faith whereby God declares him righteous and His friend? That cannot be! If Abraham’s ability to have faith (believing) comes from within, then his salvation is the result of his work and not of grace.

The Scripture tells us that if Abraham were justified by works, he would have something to glory in, but not before God (Ro. 4:2). To him who works for salvation his reward could not be counted of grace, but of debt. In other words if saving faith came from Abraham, then he was saved by his work (of faith) but not of grace, and God would be obliged to pay Abraham for what he had accomplished (righteous faith) in saving himself.

How do we reconcile this apparent contradiction? How are we to understand that Abraham could believe (have faith) God, and his believing be credited to him for righteousness? We find our answer in Paul’s letter to the Galatians. The Galatians were being influenced by the Judaizers’ gospel, teaching that justification before God is found in keeping the law (in our day it would be doing good works). Paul sought to prevent these young Christians from embracing a false gospel and to encourage them to find their spiritual freedom in Christ alone, and not through works of the flesh (Gal 5:1). This false gospel became a hindrance to the Galatians obedience to God, and they began to believe that salvation was not of grace alone, but also by good works (for them keeping parts of the Mosaic law).

Ga 3:8 And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.
Ga 3:9 So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.

God told Abraham that the Messiah would descend through him. Through Abraham’s descendent all the nations of the world would be blessed. Abraham “heard” God, and believed through the hearing in the same way every believer comes to have saving faith. “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” (Ro 10:17) [B]Some “hear” the gospel and remain in unbelief because they are not given the gift of saving faith (Eph 2:8-9) “For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.” (Heb 4:2)

Now we can understand how Abraham believing (having faith) God is counted unto him for righteousness. All of God, none of Abraham. Salvation is of the LORD! (Jonah 2:9)

Many Blessings,
RW


The blue part is the only issue I have, other wise it is a good post. IMHO. Regarding the blue part, consider, as opposed to "giving the gift of saving faith" we are, as the Bible tells us, convicted of sin by the Spirit and thus presented with the Way, of eternal Life. We can believe and say yes or reject and say no. Basically we still can't take any credit for anything because it was God in the first place who convicted our hearts that we indeed are sinners in need of Salvation.

I think some of the further confusion is a typo
Now we can understand how Abraham believing (having faith) God is counted unto him for righteousness. All of God, none of Abraham. Salvation is of the LORD! (Jonah 2:9)

I think you meant to say, God accounted it unto him as righteousness

quiet dove
Apr 30th 2009, 02:43 AM
Says you, but not scripture. We are saved by God's grace through having faith in Christ. It is only because of God's grace that we have an opportunity to believe in Christ so that we won't perish but have everlasting life.

Do you not know that Romans 4:2 is speaking of the works of the law? All you have to do is look at the previous chapter to see the context.

Romans 3
26To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus. 27Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith.
28Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.
29Is he the God of the Jews only? is he not also of the Gentiles? Yes, of the Gentiles also:
30Seeing it is one God, which shall justify the circumcision by faith, and uncircumcision through faith.
31Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the law.

In Romans 4:2-3 Paul reiterates what he said in Romans 3:26-28. No one is justified by works of the law but instead is justified by faith in Christ.

Faith is certainly not a work of the law.

We don't need to because there's no contradiction. We're not justified by works of the law but we are justified by faith in Christ.

None of Abraham? Is man not responsible for anything, Roger? It specifically says that Abraham believed God and his faith was credited to him for righteousness. It doesn't say anything about God believing for him.

I dont see Roger saying that God believed for Abraham or that Abraham was found righteous on account of his works. Abraham believed God and Abrahams works proved it, and Abraham was found righteous because of his faith. That is no different than us.

We believe God the Father that, Jesus is God the Son, our Redeemer, God the Holy Spirit convicts us of sin, and our works are a reflection of our believing and our faith. Abraham, like us, is covered by the atoning blood of Christ.

quiet dove
Apr 30th 2009, 02:52 AM
Greetings Ixthus,

I'm a little confused by your reply. You said our salvation is given to us by God, but you also say we must accept the gift...what is the gift you are referring to? Is not salvation freely given as you have said, and not something that Christ merely offers for us to accept or reject? For that matter does not Eph 2:8,9 show us that even saving faith is not our own but the gift of God's grace?

Many Blessings,
RW

I think wear you are tripping up at is that you know it is all God and we do nothing, and that is commendable. But, what God also gave us was the ability to choose. He does all the work, the convicting of our hearts (16:8), the having put within all his creatures the knowledge of a Creator. (Rom 1:20). His Holy word, as you already quoted.(Rom 10:17). So yea, all is done by God except one thing, we must believe, which is saying yes, and confess

Rom 10:9 that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

So while God does do everything, including giving us the free will to believe or not believe. Abraham was in the same shoes, he believed, his works/obedience proved it, and his faith was accounted unto him as righteousness. We can't say just how much understanding Abraham had regarding the promised Messiah, but Abraham believed God's promises and he believed that God could save him. And Abraham believed in his heart and confessed with his mouth and his works were the reflection of his heart.

divaD
Apr 30th 2009, 02:53 AM
Romans 4:5 But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for
righteousness

This verse isn't teaching that the "his faith" is referring to the "him that worketh not". "His faith" is referring to "him that justifieth the ungodly". Who's that? Jesus Christ. It's His faith that justifieth, not ours. If our faith could then we might have something to boast of. No one wants to admit this but it's none-the-less true.


Let's divide verse 5 into 3 clauses..a,b, and c, since I'm not certain that I'm following you here.

In all 3 clauses a pronoun is used. Are you saying that in both clause b and c, that these refer to Jesus, or that just clause b refers to Jesus? I can see where clause b would be, but not clause c.

RogerW
Apr 30th 2009, 03:52 AM
I think wear you are tripping up at is that you know it is all God and we do nothing, and that is commendable. But, what God also gave us was the ability to choose.

Hi quiet dove,

How can this be? If you agree that salvation is all of God, how can you say that God gave us the ability to choose? You are saying with one breath that salvation is the work of God, and of course with this I agree, for Scripture confirms this truth. But then with the very next breath you say that God gave man something he/she must do to be saved...believe. That of course means that we are saved by our faith. Doesn't Scripture teach us we are saved by grace through faith? If we are saved by believing (having faith), how can salvation be by grace? Either salvation is all of God, or salvation is by grace plus man's choosing Him (our good work). Of course if man must choose, then obviously you cannot agree that salvation is by God's grace.




He does all the work, the convicting of our hearts (16:8), the having put within all his creatures the knowledge of a Creator. (Rom 1:20). His Holy word, as you already quoted.(Rom 10:17). So yea, all is done by God except one thing, we must believe, which is saying yes, and confess

Rom 10:9 that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

So while God does do everything, including giving us the free will to believe or not believe. Abraham was in the same shoes, he believed, his works/obedience proved it, and his faith was accounted unto him as righteousness. We can't say just how much understanding Abraham had regarding the promised Messiah, but Abraham believed God's promises and he believed that God could save him. And Abraham believed in his heart and confessed with his mouth and his works were the reflection of his heart.

When does man have free will or the ability to turn to Christ for life? Before we are born again we are slaves of Satan, and in bondage to sin and death. In this condition we can only choose according to our nature or natural fleshly desires, which will not seek Christ for life. After we are born again we have become servants of Christ. Now we can freely choose to walk according to our flesh, or we can freely choose to walk according to the Spirit because our nature has been changed and is no longer bound by Satan, sin and death.

Try to examine Romans 10 using more of the context. Paul explains how one is enabled to believe with the heart and confess with the mouth, by the Word of faith, which is preached. To call upon the name of the Lord one must first believe (have faith), and faith comes by hearing the Word of God. But not all who hear the gospel preached believe...why? Because it was not mixed with faith in those who heard. How can that be, since Scripture tells us faith comes by hearing the Word?

Ro 10:8 But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;

Ro 10:11 For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

Ro 10:13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
Ro 10:14 How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?
Ro 10:15 And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!
Ro 10:16 But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report?
Ro 10:17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

Many Blessings,
RW

quiet dove
Apr 30th 2009, 04:27 AM
Hi quiet dove,

How can this be? If you agree that salvation is all of God, how can you say that God gave us the ability to choose? You are saying with one breath that salvation is the work of God, and of course with this I agree, for Scripture confirms this truth. But then with the very next breath you say that God gave man something he/she must do to be saved...believe. That of course means that we are saved by our faith. Doesn't Scripture teach us we are saved by grace through faith? If we are saved by believing (having faith), how can salvation be by grace? Either salvation is all of God, or salvation is by grace plus man's choosing Him (our good work). Of course if man must choose, then obviously you cannot agree that salvation is by God's grace.

Because the debt was paid by Christ. Our saying yes is not a work, it is acknowledging His work. Just like trusting, trusting is not a work, it is trusting that His work on the Cross is able to save us. If you think about it, even the ability to believe, trust, and have faith is a God given ability. He gave us life and created us with this ability, so the ability is also given.


When does man have free will or the ability to turn to Christ for life? Before we are born again we are slaves of Satan, and in bondage to sin and death. In this condition we can only choose according to our nature or natural fleshly desires, which will not seek Christ for life. After we are born again we have become servants of Christ. Now we can freely choose to walk according to our flesh, or we can freely choose to walk according to the Spirit because our nature has been changed and is no longer bound by Satan, sin and death.
When Adam and Eve disobeyed God, they did become separated from Him, basically handing Satan dominion, the dominion that God had given them and thus the resulting curse. But as we know in God's love and mercy He provided for us to again be reunited to our Creator. Even with the fall we can be convicted by the Holy Spirit of our fallen condition, if we will but respond to that conviction. In other words, the Holy Spirit comes to us, calling, telling us we are sinners, we are then still capable of responding, or acknowledging, yes I am a sinner, something is wrong, I am longing for something, I am missing something. We may be helpless to help ourselves, but we are still capable of knowing something is wrong. I mean, though we are helpless to save ourselves, helpless to free ourselves from Satan, we still possess the God given ability to choose, that is the way we are created. Being in bondage does not change the way we were created, it changes our relationship to God.

Our battle are spiritual and we are in spiritual bondage but we are still what God created. Body, soul, mind, spirit and so on. But separated from Him and death is the result of that separation because of our sinful nature.



Try to examine Romans 10 using more of the context. Paul explains how one is enabled to believe with the heart and confess with the mouth, by the Word of faith, which is preached. To call upon the name of the Lord one must first believe (have faith), and faith comes by hearing the Word of God. But not all who hear the gospel preached believe...why? Because it was not mixed with faith in those who heard. How can that be, since Scripture tells us faith comes by hearing the Word?

Many Blessings,
RWI think it comes down to God giving us our choice. Yes the word is living and power but at the same time, what good is force love, or a robot with no feelings. Even the angels had a choice, did/do they not? I mean Satan rebelled and so did a third of the angels. It seems that pride is at the heart of the problem. Men can decided to humble themselvs to the Word, or they can refuse, and continue in their rebellious pride. God wants our love. He offers us His love, calls to us, provides the Way, all He asks is that we choose to love in return. It takes very little on our part, if we will but say yes, He provides everything else, even the faith.

I have been in such a state as to believe but be afraid, so what to do? Prayed for faith, prayed for understanding, prayed and praying to learn to love, for the gift of love in my heart. God does it all, say yes is a response, to what He has done, (or saying no). Actually, saying yes is doing no more than saying no, is saying no "doing" anything, as in a work?

God gives us all we need. He also gives us the ability to choose and the ability to also reject. But unless someone hears the preaching, the word, as Romans is talking about, how can they choose? I think that is what Paul is trying to say too.

quiet dove
Apr 30th 2009, 04:28 AM
Sorry for the typos, honestly, I can type, I when I am thinking and writing and typing, the brian, eyes and fingers end up doing different things or something.

divaD
Apr 30th 2009, 04:34 AM
That is what I'm saying. B and C are both refering to the Lord. A obviously not. You say you can't see where clause C is refering to Jesus. Let me help. That is if I'm understanding exactly where I'm losing you.

Here's the verse again so you we don't have to scroll up to see it.

Romans 4:5 But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness

Let me try and paraphrase the last part here. .....but believeth on him that justifies the ungodly (aka GOD justifies the ungodly), HIS FAITH (aka GOD's) is counted for righteousness. Not the person that worketh not.

I don't know if I helped or not. Not sure exactly where we are going wrong here.

Mike




Romans 4:2 For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God.

Romans 4:3 For what saith the scripture * Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.


Romans 4:4 Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.

Romans 4:5 But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.


IMO, verse 4 seems to be explaining verse 2, and verse 5 seems to be explaining verse 3.

Since verse 5 is our focus here, and since verse 3 seems to be saying that it was Abraham's faith, or IOW because he believed God, it was counted unto him for righteousness. What was? His faith in what God is, does, and says, etc.

So, if one is not justified by works, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, then that same one's faith is counted for righteousness. The grace would be clause b. The faith would be both clause b and clause c. And isn't this how we are saved? For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.


Think about clause b for a moment. Would not the grace be that the ungodly is justified? Aren't we all ungodly before we come to Christ? Would not the faith be that we believe on He whom is able to justify us even tho we by ourselves, without Him, are ungodly? If so, then why would this not be our faith?

John146
Apr 30th 2009, 02:58 PM
I knew you would have something to say about my reply. And I knew you would think it's nonsense. We've had this conversation before so I knew you would reject the idea that faith doesn't contribute to one's salvation.Why shouldn't I when scripture clearly says that faith does contribute to one's salvation?

John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Romans 10
9That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. 10For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Acts 16
30And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved?
31And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.


But for the sakes of anyone new here I'll respond to this very simple verse you gave. Let me put in bold letters and underline what we really need to be focusing on.

Romans 4:5 But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.

This verse isn't teaching that the "his faith" is referring to the "him that worketh not".It's clearly referring to the faith of "him that worketh not, but believeth...".

Tell me how you interpret this verse, which is speaking of Abraham:

Genesis 15:6 And he believed in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness.

This verse clearly says that Abraham believed in the LORD and the LORD counted it (Abraham's faith) to Abraham for righteousness.

Here is further evidence that it is Abraham's faith that was credited for righteousness.

Romans 4
16Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all, 17(As it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations,) before him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were.
18Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be.
19And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sarah's womb:
20He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God;
21And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform.
22And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness.
23Now it was not written for his sake alone, that it was imputed to him;
24But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead;
25Who was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our justification.

This says that Abraham was not weak in faith but strong in faith. He believed in God's promises. As a result, his faith was imputed to him for righteousness. As Paul says, we too, "if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead" have our faith imputed to us for righteousness.

John146
Apr 30th 2009, 03:03 PM
Yet gramatically, this is what is being said. Could our faith be counted for righteousness? All our righteosness are as filthy rags. Since we are all completely saturated with sin, even the faith that we can muster up is good for nothing.

Rom 7:18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but [how] to perform that which is good I find not.

Also faith is a work. We all know that works can't save us.

In Gen 15:6 is where we 1st read about "Abraham's faith".

And he believed in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness.

We have the same problem again in the OT. What noun does the pronoun "it" refer to? Does it refer to Abraham's faith? Impossible. Why? Because "it" is grammatically a singular feminine word. Which means it MUST refer to a noun that is singular and feminine. Faith/belief is masculine. So what does it refer to? The answer is "righteousness". It's a feminine noun and can be the only answer to what the pronoun refers to. The righteosness of God is accounted for Abraham's righteousness.

MikeYou are saying that the verse should read like this:

And he believed in the LORD; and he counted righteousness to him for righteousness.

:rolleyes:

John146
Apr 30th 2009, 03:06 PM
I dont see Roger saying that God believed for Abraham or that Abraham was found righteous on account of his works. Abraham believed God and Abrahams works proved it, and Abraham was found righteous because of his faith. That is no different than us.I guess you are not familiar with what Roger believes. Roger believes that we are given faith and that we have no faith of our own. He would not agree with your statement that "Abraham was found righteous because of his faith", but I do. It isn't that Abraham was righteous in and of himself, but God determined that He would count Abraham's faith for righteousness.

John146
Apr 30th 2009, 03:46 PM
Hi quiet dove,

How can this be? If you agree that salvation is all of God, how can you say that God gave us the ability to choose? You are saying with one breath that salvation is the work of God, and of course with this I agree, for Scripture confirms this truth. But then with the very next breath you say that God gave man something he/she must do to be saved...believe. That of course means that we are saved by our faith. Doesn't Scripture teach us we are saved by grace through faith? If we are saved by believing (having faith), how can salvation be by grace? Either salvation is all of God, or salvation is by grace plus man's choosing Him (our good work). Of course if man must choose, then obviously you cannot agree that salvation is by God's grace.
Acts 16
27And the keeper of the prison awaking out of his sleep, and seeing the prison doors open, he drew out his sword, and would have killed himself, supposing that the prisoners had been fled. 28But Paul cried with a loud voice, saying, Do thyself no harm: for we are all here.
29Then he called for a light, and sprang in, and came trembling, and fell down before Paul and Silas,
30And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? 31And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.

I guess you think Paul and Silas were mistaken? The prison keeper asked what he had to do to be saved and they didn't say "there's nothing you can do". Instead, they said he and anyone else in his household had to "believe on the Lord Jesus Christ". They had to put their faith in Christ in order to be saved. It couldn't be more clear.

Butch5
Apr 30th 2009, 03:53 PM
I guess you are not familiar with what Roger believes. Roger believes that we are given faith and that we have no faith of our own. He would not agree with your statement that "Abraham was found righteous because of his faith", but I do. It isn't that Abraham was righteous in and of himself, but God determined that He would count Abraham's faith for righteousness.

Well said my friend.

RogerW
Apr 30th 2009, 04:27 PM
I guess you are not familiar with what Roger believes. Roger believes that we are given faith and that we have no faith of our own. He would not agree with your statement that "Abraham was found righteous because of his faith", but I do. It isn't that Abraham was righteous in and of himself, but God determined that He would count Abraham's faith for righteousness.

Eric, dear friend, please accurately portray my position. I have not said that mankind has no faith of their own. Prior to regeneration we all have faith, just like that of the devils and demons. But prior to regeneration we do not possess saving faith, for this kind of faith cometh by grace, not from within. You have presented a god who looks down the corridors of time to see who will believe, and this god predestines those because of their forseen or foreknown faith...however this understanding is NOT found in Scripture, but in the mind of free will.

Many Blessings,
RW

John146
Apr 30th 2009, 05:28 PM
Eric, dear friend, please accurately portray my position.I believe I did.


I have not said that mankind has no faith of their own.And that is not what I was saying. If you read my whole post I was clearly referring to the kind of faith of which Abraham was credited for righteousness, which is saving and justifying faith. I didn't think I needed to spell it out. But in case there is still any doubt about what I meant, I was saying that you believe we are given saving faith and do not have saving faith of our own.

Partaker of Christ
Apr 30th 2009, 07:44 PM
I guess you are not familiar with what Roger believes. Roger believes that we are given faith and that we have no faith of our own. He would not agree with your statement that "Abraham was found righteous because of his faith", but I do. It isn't that Abraham was righteous in and of himself, but God determined that He would count Abraham's faith for righteousness.

"that we have no faith of our own"

I don't believe that is Roger's position?

I agree with Roger that we receive saving faith from God, apart from our faith.

He is the author and perfector of our faith.

What does being the author mean?

John146
Apr 30th 2009, 08:43 PM
"that we have no faith of our own"

I don't believe that is Roger's position?I guess you didn't read the previous two posts? I know his position.


I agree with Roger that we receive saving faith from God, apart from our faith.I've gathered that from your posts in the past.


He is the author and perfector of our faith.

What does being the author mean?The Greek word is archēgos (Strong's G747).

Outline of Biblical Usage

1) the chief leader, prince
a) of Christ
2) one that takes the lead in any thing and thus affords an example, a predecessor in a matter, pioneer
3) the author

Besides Hebrews 12:2, the word is used in these verses:

Acts 3:15 And killed the Prince of life, whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses.

Acts 5:31 Him hath God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.

Hebrews 2
9But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.
10For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.

Another thing I'd like to point out is that the word "our" in "our faith" was added by the translators. I believe Hebrews 12:2 should be understood in light of how the word is used elsewhere rather than thinking that it's saying that Jesus is the one who gave us saving faith. Jesus is the Prince of life and the captain of our salvation. He is the Highest Authority. The author of...our faith? Again, the word "our" was added and is not in the Greek. I believe it's saying He is the Prince or Highest Authority of the faith. I don't believe the verse is speaking in terms of an individual's faith but to the faith in general. The phrase "the faith" can refer to the gospel or the church. I'll give you some examples.

Acts 13
7Which was with the deputy of the country, Sergius Paulus, a prudent man; who called for Barnabas and Saul, and desired to hear the word of God.
8But Elymas the sorcerer (for so is his name by interpretation) withstood them, seeking to turn away the deputy from the faith.

Acts 14
21And when they had preached the gospel to that city, and had taught many, they returned again to Lystra, and to Iconium, and Antioch,
22Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.

Acts 16
4And as they went through the cities, they delivered them the decrees for to keep, that were ordained of the apostles and elders which were at Jerusalem.
5And so were the churches established in the faith, and increased in number daily.

Romans 1
3Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh;
4And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead:
5By whom we have received grace and apostleship, for obedience to the faith among all nations, for his name:

2 Cor 13
4For though he was crucified through weakness, yet he liveth by the power of God. For we also are weak in him, but we shall live with him by the power of God toward you.
5Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?

Phil 1:27
27Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;

Christ is the cornerstone of the church, which is the bride of Christ, and He is the one who is perfecting it and making it ready for the wedding when He returns.

If Christ gives us saving faith and makes it so that we keep saving faith then how do we explain passages like this:

Hebrews 3
12Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.
13But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.
14For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end;

If saving faith is given to us and Jesus makes sure that we keep it, why would there be any need to warn against developing a heart of unbelief and departing from God? Why would it say we are made partakers of Christ IF we remain steadfast until the end? If He is the author (giver) and finisher of our saving faith then there would be no ifs about it, right?

Partaker of Christ
Apr 30th 2009, 10:12 PM
I guess you didn't read the previous two posts? I know his position.

I've gathered that from your posts in the past.

The Greek word is archēgos (Strong's G747).

Outline of Biblical Usage

1) the chief leader, prince
a) of Christ
2) one that takes the lead in any thing and thus affords an example, a predecessor in a matter, pioneer
3) the author

Besides Hebrews 12:2, the word is used in these verses:

Acts 3:15 And killed the Prince of life, whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses.

Acts 5:31 Him hath God exalted with his right hand to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.

Hebrews 2
9But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.
10For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings.

Thanks John.

So, as Prince of Life, is He not then the source of Life?

Act 3:15 But you killed the very Source (the Author) of life, Whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses.

As the Captain of Salvation, is He not the source of Salvation?


Another thing I'd like to point out is that the word "our" in "our faith" was added by the translators. I believe Hebrews 12:2 should be understood in light of how the word is used elsewhere rather than thinking that it's saying that Jesus is the one who gave us saving faith. Jesus is the Prince of life and the captain of our salvation. He is the Highest Authority. The author of...our faith? Again, the word "our" was added and is not in the Greek. I believe it's saying He is the Prince or Highest Authority of the faith. I don't believe the verse is speaking in terms of an individual's faith but to the faith in general. The phrase "the faith" can refer to the gospel or the church. I'll give you some examples.

Yes it is our faith.
If I gave you a £100 (UK) then who's is it. Mine or yours?
When we are given saving faith, it is then our faith.


Acts 13
7Which was with the deputy of the country, Sergius Paulus, a prudent man; who called for Barnabas and Saul, and desired to hear the word of God.
8But Elymas the sorcerer (for so is his name by interpretation) withstood them, seeking to turn away the deputy from the faith.

Acts 14
21And when they had preached the gospel to that city, and had taught many, they returned again to Lystra, and to Iconium, and Antioch,
22Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.

Acts 16
4And as they went through the cities, they delivered them the decrees for to keep, that were ordained of the apostles and elders which were at Jerusalem.
5And so were the churches established in the faith, and increased in number daily.

Romans 1
3Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh;
4And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead:
5By whom we have received grace and apostleship, for obedience to the faith among all nations, for his name:

2 Cor 13
4For though he was crucified through weakness, yet he liveth by the power of God. For we also are weak in him, but we shall live with him by the power of God toward you.
5Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?

Phil 1:27
27Only let your conversation be as it becometh the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;

Christ is the cornerstone of the church, which is the bride of Christ, and He is the one who is perfecting it and making it ready for the wedding when He returns.

'The Faith' is the Gospel of Grace that Paul preached.
Many came to try and destroy, and distort the message of the gospel.


If Christ gives us saving faith and makes it so that we keep saving faith then how do we explain passages like this:

Hebrews 3
12Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.
13But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.
14For we are made partakers of Christ, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end;

If saving faith is given to us and Jesus makes sure that we keep it, why would there be any need to warn against developing a heart of unbelief and departing from God? Why would it say we are made partakers of Christ IF we remain steadfast until the end? If He is the author (giver) and finisher of our saving faith then there would be no ifs about it, right?

If there be any who have an unbelieving heart, then how could they have been saved?

There was no growth, and they were still on the milk. There was no evidence that the seed had fallen on the good ground. They who have received and understood the word, are the ones who will bare much fruit.

Until we see the fruit, we cannot tell if the seed is grounded and rooted.
We are not Jesus Christ who could descern the heart, so we will know them by their fruit.

divaD
May 1st 2009, 12:48 AM
If there be any who have an unbelieving heart, then how could they have been saved?


The question isn't how could they have been saved, the question is how can they remain saved.

Hebrews 3:12Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.


Why would they be addressed as brethern if they were not saved? What's there to take heed of if there is no possibility of it happening? And how do you depart from the living God if you never were personally involved with the living God to begin with?

But seriously...reading all of that ch makes it clear as to what verse 12 is actually implying.

Perhaps you're not understanding what unbelief means according to this context? Look at verse 19.

Hebrews 3:19 So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief.

Does this mean that they no longer held a belief in the existance of a God, or could it mean what is recorded in verses 7-11, especially the latter half of verse 10(They do alway err in their heart; and they have not known my ways)?

Hebrews 3:7 Wherefore (as the Holy Ghost saith, To day if ye will hear his voice,
8 Harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness:
9 When your fathers tempted me, proved me, and saw my works forty years.
10 Wherefore I was grieved with that generation, and said, They do alway err in their heart; and they have not known my ways.
11 So I sware in my wrath, They shall not enter into my rest)

BroRog
May 1st 2009, 12:59 AM
Don't forget also that it's impossibe (gramatically) for these verses to teach that Abraham's faith was accounted for righteousness. The word "it" is a pronoun and as a basic rule, pronouns must modify a noun.

What noun does it modify? Everyone who runs to this verse to say that our faith contributes to our salvation says that it modifies the word faith. Well obviously the word isn't used, the verb form of the word is used and that's "believed". But that's a verb.

So what does the pronoun "it" modify? The problem is that the word "it" is in the 3rd person singular. In the Greek, that can be translated as he, she, or it. It's the same Greek word. It should be translated as "He" not "it". He is obviously from the context of the sentence, refering to God.

Abraham believed God, and He was counted unto him for righteousness.

Abraham believed God, and He was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.

As you and the bible says, it's all God and nothing to do with man.

Mike

Also one other thing. The word "and" also can be translated as "for". Again, same Greek word.

Abraham believed God, for He was counted unto him for righteousness.

Abraham believed God, for He was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.

So these verses are to be understood as Abraham believed God because God was accounted to him for righteousness.

Well, you've made some exegetical decisions and I commend you for getting right in there to study this out for yourself. One thing you might consider is the fact that the sentence under review is missing the typical words that designate purpose or result. The Greek term "kai" isn't used for this purpose as far as I can tell.

John146
May 1st 2009, 07:07 PM
Yep. And to clarify what it's referring to let me break it down.

And he (Abraham) believed in the LORD; FOR He (God) counted it (righteousness of God) to him (Abraham) for righteousness.

Notice I also changed the word "and" into the word "for". In the Hebrew, it could be translated as either one.What I believe you did here is make the verse redundant and senseless. Why mention Abraham believing in God at all if the point of the verse is to say that God counted His own righteousness to Abraham? Also, the "for righteousness" part becomes redundant if it is God's righteousness that was being counted to Abraham. Why wouldn't it just say "God counted His righteousness to Abraham."?

I couldn't disagree more with your conclusions. I believe you are purposely changing the text to get it to line up with your doctrine. Since the word "it" is used in the verse, it's only logical to assume that the reader would know exactly what "it" is referring to because it would have been previously mentioned. God's righteousness was not previously mentioned but Abraham's faith in God was. It's clearly referring to Abraham's faith being counted for righteousness.

Can you tell me your interpretation of this passage:

Romans 4
16Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace; to the end the promise might be sure to all the seed; not to that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith of Abraham; who is the father of us all,
17(As it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations,) before him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth those things which be not as though they were.
18Who against hope believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be.
19And being not weak in faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an hundred years old, neither yet the deadness of Sarah's womb:
20He staggered not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith, giving glory to God;
21And being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to perform.
22And therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness.
23Now it was not written for his sake alone, that it was imputed to him;
24But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead;

In verse 20, it says Abraham had strong faith. In verse 22, it is his faith that is imputed to him for righteousness. Then in verse 24 it says that we also, IF we have faith "on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead" will have our faith imputed to us for righteousness. Verse 24 clearly shows that the thing that is imputed for righteousness is believing "on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead".

If you tried to say again that it's God's righteousness that is imputed to us then you'd at least have to acknowledge that a condition for God's righteousness being imputed to us is for us to first "believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead" rather than trying to say we believe in Him because God's righteousness is first imputed to us.

Your Advert here


Hosted by Webnet77