SCRIPTURES: Romans 4:1-25
BOTTOM LINE: 3 Key’s to FAITH: Human Limitations; Trust; Next Step of Faith
QUESTION: Are we so fully persuaded and is our Trust in God so confident that even if it seems God’s promise to us is fading, will we still Trust God?
And this week, we’ve been reading chapter 4:1-25 … and Paul clarifies for the Christians there in Rome that God doesn’t Owe us anything and clearly they’re still wrestling w/ this tension of Entitlement:
- Perhaps they feel like they’ve earned something from God?
- Perhaps they feel like they’ve given enough … or done enough good things … whatever …
And we live in perhaps the most Entitled generation in the history of our country right now for sure, so this has some really, really powerful implications and things we can learn from it too … Think about today’s generation:
- they expect a cell phone
- they expect a car
- they expect a college education
… they expect to be handed so many things … and to be quite honest, in many ways, we’re seeing a product of our own doing right? I’ve heard parents say for Generations, I just want for my kids to have it better than we did … and now looking back, sort of like we talked about a couple weeks ago … I wonder sometimes if all Rita and I even have done for our girls has truly been the best thing for them … or have we contributed to this sense of Entitlement as well
… and Paul sort of addresses this again, and in fact, dives into 3 Keys to our FAITH in God thru Jesus.
This was especially true for the Jews who were receiving Paul’s letter to the Roman church … many of them felt that they were special and entitled because of their obedience to the Law and many of them even tethered their entitlement all the way back to their relationship w/ Abraham …
And Paul … remember, he was raised in a Jewish household, so he understood the culture … and he understood the thinking … and when he wrote these words … he was in essence writing them to himself, and he often had some pretty strong things to say didn’t he?
In chapter 3 the last couple weeks, he made a couple really important points:
- We are Justified… forgiven … redeemed … by FAITH and not by WORKS. Doesn’t matter how much we do, if we are pouring God’s pure and Holy Spirit into an unclean vessel it matters not.
- Jews and Gentiles alike have equal access to this Justification.
And clearly they were still struggling to grasp the totality of what he was trying to say … so he decides to use ABRAHAM as an example …
- Abraham Ignored the Human Limitations
As we grow in our relationship and trust w/ God … one of the things we discover is that our FAITH should be based on God’s Promises and His Word … and not necessarily on the circumstances of our life in the moment.
- Abraham Trusted God
Abraham was human … and Abraham had many of the same battles and tensions and wrestling matches that we experience for sure … but Abraham’s Trust was more in God than it was w/in himself … and I think that’s where I can struggle so often.
And it sounds ludicrous in 1 sense … to even consider having more trust in ME than I do in GOD … but hello, when I think I can solve the problem or find the answer … or navigate the next step better than God seems to be doing, it’s so difficult.
- Abraham Took the Next-Step of Faith
God’s Word tells us that … He can work all things together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose.
But I have to ask myself … do I BELIEVE that? And do I take the next-step thru my FAITH and BELIEF that what He says is true and applies to me?
And that is true … even when I can’t see what’s coming … the question in that moment is will I take the next step of Faith?