Joey Chive2 March 2009 at 7:46pmPosts: 180 (0 today)Status: offline
Is this blessedness only for the circumcised, or also for the uncircumcised? We have been saying that Abraham?s faith was credited to him as righteousness. Under what circumstances was it credited? Was it after he was circumcised, or before? It was not after, but before! And he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness that he had by faith while he was still uncircumcised. So then, he is the father of all who believe but have not been circumcised, in order the righteousness might be credited to them. And he is also the father of the circumcised who not only are circumcised but who also walk in the footsteps of the faith that our father Abraham had before he was circumcised.
Is the blessedness of salvation by grace only for the Jews, or is it also for the Gentiles? Since Abraham received assigned righteousness as a Gentile, this shows us that God?s salvation in Jesus is for all people. Before Abraham was given the sign of circumcision, the sign that set the Jews apart as God?s chosen people, he had already been made right with God as Abraham the Chadean. This is Paul?s argument here in Rom. 4:9 through 12. This is proof positive that being a Jew, and by implication , following the law, is not necessary for salvation. Israel should read their own bible and realize that they are lost without imputed righteousness, given freely when a person believes in Jesus Christ.
Since Abraham was saved before he was Jewish, this demonstrates that God never intended to save one nation and use the rest to fuel the fires of hell. The good fortune of being given the goodness needed for heaven is for both the circumcised and the uncircumcised. The only common requirement for both is faith in Jesus. When someone has faith in Jesus, it matters not if he is Jewish or non-Jewish. He is saved by that faith.
God beautified the world with the gospel. He did not want to make one nation happy. He wanted to give the nations the blessing of salvation. When anyone, in any place, believes the gospel, they are saved. It is wrong to think that just because you belong to a nation, denomination, or a certain group, that you are accepted by God. God accepts the person with faith in Jesus, period.
What is more, if a Jew wants salvation, he must go back before circumcision and before the law of Moses to get it. He must go back to Abraham?s covenant, the covenant that predicted and foreshadowed the gospel. Abraham?s covenant is the gospel in advance. Paul?s message of Christ is the uncovered revelation to the world that says, ?Believe and be saved.?
Circumcision was only a sign, a ceremony. A ceremony can never be the reason for justification. It is only a formal act, a mere procedure. Abraham was righteous before he was circumcised. He already had what he needed. So far are the Jews from their religion that they forgot the reason for circumcision. Circumcision was given as a seal of the gospel!
The Jews were God?s chosen people to legitimize the gospel. They were selected to show the world that belief in Messiah was all that was needed.
?Judeo-Christian? is a term that tries to harmonize the two groups without Jesus. The fact is, without Jesus, the groups are worthless. The Jews forgot why they were chosen in the first place. The pseudo-Christians deny the One whose name they bear.
The fact that Abraham was justified before circumcision and the law, disallows any claim for legal righteousness. To be legal is to follow the law, but God declared Abraham righteous before the law, because of his faith. The Old Testament portion of our Bible established grace before it established the temporary law. Get on the side of grace and in so doing, get on the side of God.
The happiness of God-given goodness through Christ is for all, whether Jew or Gentile. Abraham?s faith credited him with righteousness. This happened before he was Jewish, and so, as a Gentile. This means that Abraham is the parent of all who walk in the footsteps of faith. If a person follows the track of faith, the trail left by Abraham, as he trusted in the Messiah to come, that person will have the blessedness.
Circumcision is the sign of faith in Jesus. It is the token and the outward sign of something that already occurred, namely, righteousness by faith without works. It is not a sign that says, ?Jews are chosen, the rest are dogs.? Whomever you are, Jew, Gentile, Barbarian, or Sycthian, you can belong to the line of Abraham, who was the first to trust in the Seed who would bless all nations, Jesus Christ, the Savior of the human race. Amen!