Abraham Justified by Faith
1What then can we say that Abraham, our physical ancestor, # Lit our ancestor according to the flesh # Rm 1:3 has found? 2If Abraham was justified # Or was declared righteous, or was acquitted by works, # 1Co 1:31 he has something to brag about — but not before God. # He has no reason for boasting in God’s presence. 3For what does the Scripture say?
Abraham believed God,
and it was credited to him for righteousness. # Gn 15:6; Gl 3:6; Jms 2:23 # Gn 15:6
4Now to the one who works, # Rm 11:6 pay is not considered as a gift, but as something owed. 5But to the one who does not work, but believes on Him who declares the ungodly to be righteous, # Or who acquits, or who justifies # Jn 3:33; Rm 3:22 his faith is credited for righteousness.
David Celebrating the Same Truth
6Likewise, David also speaks of the blessing of the man God credits righteousness to apart from works:
7How joyful are those whose lawless acts are forgiven
and whose sins are covered!
8How joyful is the man
the Lord will never charge with sin! # Ps 32:1-2; 2Co 5:19 # Ps 32:1-2
Abraham Justified before Circumcision
9Is this blessing only for the circumcised, # Rm 3:30 then? Or is it also for the uncircumcised? For we say, Faith was credited to Abraham for righteousness. # Gn 15:6 # Gn 15:6 10In what way then was it credited — while he was circumcised, or uncircumcised? Not while he was circumcised, but uncircumcised. 11And he received the sign of circumcision # Gn 17:10-11 as a seal of the righteousness that he had by faith # Lit righteousness of faith # Jn 3:33 while still uncircumcised. This was to make him the father # Lk 19:9 of all who believe # Rm 3:22 but are not circumcised, so that righteousness may be credited to them also. 12And he became the father of the circumcised, who are not only circumcised but who also follow in the footsteps of the faith our father Abraham had while he was still uncircumcised.
The Promise Granted through Faith
13For the promise to Abraham # Rm 9:8; Gl 3:16; Heb 6:15,17; 7:6; 11:9,17 or to his descendants that he would inherit the world # Gn 17:4-6; 21:17-18 was not through the law, but through the righteousness that comes by faith. # Lit righteousness of faith 14If those who are of the law are heirs, # Gl 3:18 faith is made empty and the promise is canceled. 15For the law produces wrath. # Rm 7:7,10-25; 1Co 15:56; Gl 3:10 And where there is no law, # Rm 3:20 there is no transgression.
16This is why the promise is by faith, so that it may be according to grace, # Rm 3:24 to guarantee it to all the descendants # Rm 9:8; 15:8 — not only to those who are of the law # Or not to those who are of the law only but also to those who are of Abraham’s faith. He is the father of us all 17in God’s sight. As it is written: I have made you the father of many nations. # Gn 17:5 # Gn 17:5 He believed in God, who gives life to the dead # Jn 5:21 and calls # Is 48:13; 51:2 things into existence that do not exist. # 1Co 1:28 18He believed, hoping against hope, so that he became the father of many nations # Gn 17:5 # Gn 17:5 according to what had been spoken: So will your descendants be. # Gn 15:5 # Gn 15:5 19He considered # Other mss read He did not consider his own body to be already dead # Heb 11:12 (since he was about 100 years old) # Gn 17:17 and also considered the deadness of Sarah’s womb, # Gn 18:11 without weakening in the faith. 20He did not waver in unbelief at God’s promise but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, # Mt 9:8 21because he was fully convinced # Rm 14:5 that what He had promised He was also able to perform. # Gn 18:14; Heb 11:19 22Therefore, it was credited to him for righteousness. # Gn 15:6; Rm 4:3 # Gn 15:6 23Now it was credited to him was not written for Abraham alone, # Rm 15:4; 1Co 9:9; 10:11; 2Tm 3:16 24but also for us. It will be credited to us who believe in Him # Rm 10:9; 1Pt 1:21 who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead. # Ac 2:24 25He was delivered up for # Or because of our trespasses # Rm 5:6,8; 8:32; Gl 2:20; Eph 5:2 and raised for # Or because of our justification. # Or acquittal # Rm 5:18; 1Co 15:17; 2Co 5:15