Gardendale Nazarene

to live completely for Christ...

Righteous Because of His Faith | Pastor's Blog | Gardendale Nazarene

Righteous Because of His Faith

As we work our way through Romans on Sunday mornings, there are many passages that we will be unable to cover. I would like to use these devotionals to cover some of those passages.

Romans 3 ends with Paul asking a series of three questions (there are actually more questions, but the other questions fall under these three):

  • Then what becomes of our boasting?
  • Or is God the God of Jews only?
  • Do we then overthrow the law by this faith?

Today, I would like to focus on the first question, "Then what becomes of our boasting?"

Paul's Jewish audience dealt with boasting on two levels. Judaism dealt with a self-confident assumption of national, cultural and religious superiority. This is the first level of boasting Paul was addressing.

Paul also dealt with the boasting surrounding the keeping of the Law. Keeping the Law leads to the belief that one had earned favor with God due to their own righteousness. This self-righteousness leads to boasting. In effect, it is not God who saves, but by keeping the law the believers could 'save' themselves.

This issue of boasting is not just something that Paul's Jewish audience had in their lives- it is something in our lives as well. We too struggle with boasting.

Boasting comes from our struggle with self-centeredness. We turn the focus of salvation away from God and to ourselves.

This is a real struggle. "If I live the Christian life, then God has to save me." "I'm a good person and don't 'do bad stuff', thus I'm a Christian."

When these types of thoughts creep into our minds, we are turning salvation away from God and focusing on ourselves.

Paul is reminding us that the focus has to remain on God's saving work. Paul wraps up this argument at the beginning of chapter 4.

"Abraham was, humanly speaking, the founder of our Jewish nation. What did he discover about being made right with God? If his good deeds had made him acceptable to God, he would have had something to boast about. But that was not God’s way. For the Scriptures tell us, 'Abraham believed God, and God counted him as righteous because of his faith'" (Romans 4:1-3 NLT).

We need to be reminded of Paul's point. It is God alone who saves. Next week, we will look at Paul's next point in chapter 4.

Pastor John