NEW TESTAMENT CONTEXTUAL COMMENTARY
Dr. Robert R. Seyda
EPISTLE TO THE ROMANS
SUMMARY OF CHAPTER FOUR
The Apostle Paul was looking for someone that both the Jews and Gentiles respected, to show how getting right with God does not come by way of performing certain good works or participating in certain rites or rituals. In considering the justification of Abraham, Paul quotes Genesis 15:6 where it is stated that Abraham’s faith was accounted to him for righteousness (1-3). Abraham trusted in God, not in his own works, and through such faith experienced the justice (forgiveness) expressed by David in Psalms 31:1,2 (4-8).
To demonstrate further that God’s righteousness by faith is offered to both Jew and Gentile, Paul continues to us Abraham as an example. He reminds them that Abraham’s faith was accounted for righteousness before receiving circumcision, which was in itself a seal of the righteousness of the faith, and prior to the giving of the Law which Jews pointed to as the basis for their righteousness. Thus, before there were Israelites and Jews before the Ten Commandments were given, Abraham, who came from the land of Chaldea, was chosen to be the spiritual father of all who believe, whether circumcised or not.
More than once Paul reminds them that the promise that Abraham was to be “a father of many nations” was given in response to his faith, not through some law. God did this so that the promise of all who believe becoming the children of God would be according to grace and sure to those who have the same kind of faith as Abraham.
Finally, having illustrated that by the nature of Abraham’s obedient faith, he assured both the Jews and the Gentiles in the Church at Rome that those who have the same kind faith in God who raised Jesus will find their faith accounted to them for righteousness in the same way.
So as the lesson ended we conclude this summary. It would be hard for anyone to say that such a plan for the redemption, calling, justification, salvation, and glorification of sinful mankind from being slaves of the devil into becoming children of God could ever exist in man’s imagination. It makes no sense when sifted through human logic. And why the eternal, omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent God of the universe would pick out a speck of dust in His universe called Earth, and populate it with a new species apart from the angels and heavenly beings that already existed just so that He could show His virtues of love, grace, and mercy, is above and beyond all mankind’s creative thinking. But that was on purpose. God did not want us to accept His plan because it made sense to us, but because it would require faith in His message that it was the only way people could live forever with Him, His Son, and His Spirit in heavenly places. May He increase our faith to trust Him more and believe that what He says is valid for eternity and will surely come to pass.
WE WILL BEGIN CHAPTER FIVE, LESSON ONE, WEDNESDAY, JULY 5TH
Hope and pray you will continue this study with us.