The Purpose of the Law, and the Promise of God’s Grace (Romans 4)

Heart of a Shepherd

Jan 29, 2023

Translations

Greek

Ο σκοπός του νόμου και η υπόσχεση της χάριτος του Θεού (Ρωμαίους 4)

Haitian Creole

Objektif lalwa a, ak pwomès gras Bondye a (Women 4)

Urdu

قانون کا مقصد، اور خدا کے فضل کا وعدہ (رومیوں 4)

Chinese (Simplified)

律法的目的和上帝恩典的应许(罗马书 4)

Russian

Цель закона и обетование Божьей благодати (Римлянам 4)

Croatian

Svrha zakona i obećanje Božje milosti (Rimljanima 4)

Thai

จุดประสงค์ของธรรมบัญญัติ และพระสัญญาแห่งพระคุณของพระเจ้า (โรม 4)

German

Der Zweck des Gesetzes und die Verheißung der Gnade Gottes (Römer 4)

French (Canada)

Le but de la loi et la promesse de la grâce de Dieu (Romains 4)

Arabic

الغرض من الناموس والوعد بنعمة الله (رومية 4)

Hindi

व्यवस्था का उद्देश्य, और परमेश्वर के अनुग्रह की प्रतिज्ञा (रोमियों 4)

Persian

هدف شریعت و وعده فیض خدا (رومیان 4)

Romanian

Scopul Legii și promisiunea harului lui Dumnezeu (Romani 4)

Dutch

Het doel van de wet en de belofte van Gods genade (Romeinen 4)

Hebrew

מטרת החוק, והבטחת חסדו של אלוהים (רומים 4)

Danish

Formålet med loven og løftet om Guds nåde (Rom 4)

Chinese (Traditional)

律法的目的和上帝恩典的應許(羅馬書 4)

Korean

율법의 목적과 하나님의 은혜의 약속(로마서 4장)

French

Le but de la loi et la promesse de la grâce de Dieu (Romains 4)

Japanese

律法の目的と神の恵みの約束 (ローマ人への手紙 4)

Portuguese

O Propósito da Lei e a Promessa da Graça de Deus (Romanos 4)

Swahili

Kusudi la Sheria, na Ahadi ya Neema ya Mungu (Warumi 4)

Tagalog

Ang Layunin ng Kautusan, at ang Pangako ng Biyaya ng Diyos (Roma 4)

Malay

Tujuan Hukum, dan Janji Kasih Karunia Tuhan (Roma 4)

Swedish

Syftet med lagen och löftet om Guds nåd (Rom 4)

Vietlabelse

Mục đích của Luật pháp và Lời hứa về Ân điển của Đức Chúa Trời (Rô-ma 4)

Ukrainian

Мета закону та обітниця Божої благодаті (Римлянам 4)

Spanish

El Propósito de la Ley, y la Promesa de la Gracia de Dios (Romanos 4)

Italian

Lo scopo della legge e la promessa della grazia di Dio (Romani 4)

The Purpose of the Law, and the Promise of God’s Grace (Romans 4)

 Scripture reading - Romans 4

 

Paul’s epistle to believers living in Rome established the universal sinfulness of man (Romans 3:10, 23). Yet, there were some of Abraham’s lineage who placed their hope of salvation in their kinship with that Old Testament patriarch. To them, Paul declared, “there is no respect of persons with God” (2:11). The children of Israel were God’s chosen people, and privileged to be given His Law and Commandments; nevertheless, Paul declared, “by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin” (3:20).

If obedience to the law does not justify (meaning, to be declared righteous in the sight and judgment of God), then by what might a sinner be forgiven his sins? We cannot merit salvation by good works or adherence to the law (Ephesians 2:8-9). Therefore, salvation is an act of God’s grace and favor, “through the redemption that is in [provided by] Christ Jesus” (3:24). A believer is “justified by faith, [and not by] the deeds of the law” (3:24).

Romans 4

 

Yet, there were Jews who resisted Paul’s teachings concerning faith, and supposed he was teaching a new doctrine and way of salvation. They believed their salvation was based upon circumcision, and keeping the Law. Paul countered their false beliefs, and stated Abraham’s relationship with God was not based upon his works, but upon his faith in God’s promises (4:1-2). He “believed God,” and his faith was “counted unto him for righteousness” (4:3).

 

Paul then gave a second example in his argument for salvation by grace through faith…King David. David understood the importance of faith (Psalm 32:1-2), and believed a sinner enjoyed God’s favor (“blessedness”) by faith, for “God imputeth [credits to one’s account] righteousness without works” (4:6). Though the wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23), one’s sins are covered and his sin debt paid in full, by the gift of God’s grace (4:7-8).



Still, there were some who believed Abraham was justified before God by circumcision and in keeping the law. Paul reminded them, before Abraham “received the sign of circumcision,” he was sealed by “the righteousness of the faith” (4:11). Indeed, Abraham was not only the father of the Jews, but he is the spiritual “father of all them that believe” (4:11). Before the Law and Commandments were given to Israel, Abraham “believed God” and was declared righteous (4:3-5, 13).

 

Closing thoughts - What purpose does the law serve? (4:15-17) – I conclude with three observations regarding the Law and Commandments: 1) The law reveals God’s perfect standard of holiness, which every man should aspire to keep (4:15). 2) The law demands punishment for the transgressor. 3) While the law does not save, it shows a sinner his need of a Savior.

 

As it was for Abraham, so it is for all sinners (4:18-25). Because of the Law, we are convinced and convicted of our sins, and find salvation by faith in God’s grace. “Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ” who is the Law incarnate (5:1; John 1:1).

 

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Copyright © 2022 – Travis D. Smith

 

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