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Showing posts from July, 2011

How does justification relate to faith and obedience? Romans 4:9-12 Part 1

It can be shown that in Romans 4:1-8, Paul speaks of our justification in terms of the imputation of righteousness, through the phrase “faith counted for righteousness.”  In the verses under consideration, what Paul says is this: Abraham was justified many years before he was circumcised.  Therefore, circumcision has nothing whatever to do with justification.  And further, because one’s standing with God does not depend on circumcision, the blessing that David mentions is open to both Jews and non-Jews.
            That is the general scene before us.  However, we must not glaze over these words so quickly, because there are important lessons to be learned from them.  This is because in these verses are some plain lessons as to how justification relates both to faith and to obedience.  I am going to argue from these verses that Paul’s reasoning only makes sense if faith precedes justification and obedience follows justification.  That is, we believe in order to be justified and we ob…