March - Reading 5

Discussion in 'Bible Reading Plan 2016' started by Clint Kritzer, Mar 5, 2002.

  1. Clint Kritzer

    Clint Kritzer
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  2. Clint Kritzer

    Clint Kritzer
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    Good evening -

    In Numbers tonight we see in chapter 10, the military style organization of the twelve tribes and their functions. The Ark is carried by the priest ahead of the marching formation and God leads the people in the form of a Cloud by day and Fire by night. Moses has asked his in-laws to stay with them in their nomadic journey in 10:29 - 32.
    Chapter 11 begins with the people grumbling again. The complaint over not having meat may well have been unfounded. It is doubtful that slaves would get meat everyday but they have begun to romanticize the days of Egypt. It's just never as good as the good old days for some folks.

    In Matthew, the Pharisses and Saducees continue in their quest to discredit Christ. As for the question of the greatest commandment, Christ cites the commandment that defines our relationship to God, and the commandment that defines our relationship to each other.
    The chapter ends with the religious leaders giving up their attempts to discredit Christ.

    The point of the reading in Romans tonight is that we are justified not by works, but by faith. The Jews held circumcision as the act that saved them. Paul points out that Abraham was saved before the act of circumcision. It is by grace through faith that we are saved, not by works.

    May God bless you

    - Clint
     
  3. Born Again Catholic

    Born Again Catholic
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    Romans

    We are justified by faith, but as mentioned before where there has been disagreements is about these questions, is our justification completed through this one act or is faith the first step in the justification process.
    James also discusses Abrahams justification where paul does as well as another time.

    21Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar? 22You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by his works; 23and the Scripture was fulfilled that says, "Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness"-- and he was called a friend of God. 24You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone.

    James and Paul are in total agreement, "his faith was completed by his works" is completely consistent with everything Paul has emphasized by "bringing about the the obedience of faith." Paul just makes it a bit more clear that any righteous works Abraham(or anyone) accomplished were as a result of God's grace acting in our lives making us righteous thus we have absolutely nothing to boast about. All the Glory is God's you can't earn your way into heaven. We are sons of God which receive a totally undeserved inheritance not a laborer for God trying to earn a salary.

    In Chpt 4 it should be noted that Paul completely descimates the next probable Jewish objection by pointing out that Abraham was reckoned righteous before his circumcision because of his faith (Gen 15).

    But it should also be pointed out that this is not where Abraham first had faith, Back in Gen 12-14 he left his homeland in faith at an old age, And he maintained his faith as he faced famine, a rebellious nephew, Lot, fought the 5 kings who defeated the 4 kings, and received a blessing from God's priest king in salem known as Jerusalem after Abraham offered his son.

    Jesus's answer in todays reading of Matthew is another way of saying the same thing that Paul and James are saying.

    Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind....Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.


    God Bless

    [ March 06, 2003, 01:32 AM: Message edited by: Born Again Catholic ]
     
  4. Clint Kritzer

    Clint Kritzer
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    Sunday School lecture – 10/2/05 (conclusion)

    Romans 4:1-25 God’s Righteousness Illustrated

    Romans 4:1-8 Abraham Was Justified By Faith


    The Jews viewed Abraham as both an ancestor and a role model. Yet Abraham existed centuries (430 years according to Galatians 3:17) before the Law came into being. Judaism claimed that Abraham was justified, declared righteous, on the basis that he “kept the law of the Most High.” Paul rejects this assertion basing his argument on Genesis 15:6 (LXX).

    Had Abraham received the promise of God because of some good deed, or some religious rite, he would have been able to boast that his actions had brought about God’s promise to make him the father of many nations. The inspired text of the Torah makes no mention of any act, however, prior to Abraham’s encounter with God in Genesis 15 that fits the bill according to the rites of the Mosaic Law. To the contrary, Abraham believed God and it is that belief for which he was credited.

    Paul then moves to Psalm 32:1-2, in which David also uses the word “reckoned” or “counted.” In this instance, Paul shows that justification is the pardoning of sin. By imputing righteousness, the debt of sin is erased.

    Romans 4:9-12 Abraham was Justified By Faith Before Circumcision

    Paul continues using the same two Passages to press his point of faith superceding even circumcision. As “reckoned’ was the linking word in the argument towards faith before works, now the word linking the Old Testament Passages is “blessed.” The blessed state of the Psalmist springs from the forgiveness of his sins, but Paul contends this is not limited to those who have received circumcision. Since righteousness means the forgiveness of sins, Paul turns back to the righteousness credited to Abraham. This crediting towards the First Jew occurred in what we know as chapter 15 of Genesis. The circumcision of the man does not occur until chapter 17. God had forgiven the sins of an uncircumcised man. This concept was almost blasphemous to Paul’s opponents yet there it was in the very Books they used to support their religion!

    Abraham received circumcision as a sign or a seal of his faith. This is a very important point when defending the concept of believer's baptism. Faith comes before any symbolic act that we may perform. It is faith alone that justifies us and makes us worthy. All else is a testimony of that faith.

    By his faith before circumcision, Abraham became first the father of all who believe and are not circumcised. It was not until later that he became the father of all those who are circumcised. In either case he is the father only of those who have faith.

    Romans 4:13-15 Abraham Received the Promise Before the Law was Given

    Paul progresses his argument of Abraham’s justification through faith by moving from the sign of the covenant to the Law as the command and code of the covenant. The argument here rests upon an understanding of the relationship between the “promise” and the “Law” and “Law” and “wrath.” The promise made to Abraham was made before the Law was conceived, some 430 years according to Galatians 3:18. That promise was then renewed with his “seed,” a reference to Christ according to Galatians 3:16. It is not unreasonable to interpret the term “Christ” in that instance as the “Corporate Christ,” or the church.

    Paul contends that the Law excludes faith and promise as the legalistic nature of it shifts attention from God to man. A man under the Law must perform acts thereby making the promise no longer a gift but his due. Judaism claimed that Abraham anticipated the Law but Paul rejects this as so much time transpired before Moses even came into being.

    Again Paul returns to the concept touched on in verse 3:20 that the Law brings about consciousness of sin but he quickly moves on at this point. The concept of the Law bringing consciousness of sin, or transgression will be more fully explored in chapter 7.

    Romans 4:16-25 Abraham is the True Type of Those Justified by Faith

    Paul concludes this section of his Letter to the Romans by wrapping up his arguments and plainly summarizing them. Abraham was justified by faith. Abraham is the father of all who believe. Since he is our father, we are his heirs, specifically, heirs to the promise. The promise is a gift, not something that is earned. The all who believe includes the Jews and does not exclude the Gentiles.

    Paul now turns his argument to Genesis 17:5 where God tells Abraham that he would be the father of many nations. The object of Abraham’s faith is the God of the promise. Without God there would no promise to be accepted by grace through faith. Abraham’s belief was not some nebulous trust but was a faith in God.

    The birth of Isaac was as miraculous as resurrection from the dead as Abraham was 100 and Sarah was 90 at the time. The faith of Abraham was in a God so powerful that he could call life into being from nothing. He hoped against hope, says Paul. The first hope in the statement expresses the possibility of God and the second the impossibility of man. Without God there is no hope at all.

    It has been noted in 1:21 that Godless men do not give God glory, but Abraham, the uncircumcised man with no Law, glorified God as he grew in his faith.

    The chapter ends with Paul’s explanation of why the story of Abraham and his unwavering faith occurred in the first place. It was not just for him but for us also that we may see how a man may be accounted righteous by God. God shows no partiality and if it were faith that justified Abraham, so too it is faith that justifies us.

    In the final verse Paul comes back to Christ as the sacrifice through which our sins were forgiven. It was for our sins He died. It was through His Resurrection that we are justified. Albert Barnes says of the final sentence in verse 25:

     
  5. Clint Kritzer

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