6 Just as Abraham “believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”? 7 Know then that it is those of faith who are the sons of Abraham. 8 And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, “In you shall all the nations be blessed.” 9 So then, those who are of faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith.
Galatians 3:6-9, English Standard Version
The Apostle Paul used the example of Abraham to show that justification comes by faith and not by the works of the law. When we believe and are justified by faith in Christ, we become the spiritual children of Abraham. Just as Abraham believed God and was accounted to him as righteousness, we model after him by responding to God’s call to salvation through faith. In this aspect we become sons and daughters of faith and share in Abraham’s blessing through the covenant God made him and his generations to come.
God promised Abraham that He will bless the nations through his faith, termed as Father of many nations, and not through becoming Jews. It was God’s intent right from the beginning to include the Gentiles, and all of humanity, into His salvation plan. It was always by faith and never by the works of the law. Abraham believed God’s promise even though it would be many hundred years before Christ came. His faith in God was counted to him as righteousness (Genesis 15:6).
Since we are saved by grace through faith, we just like Abraham obey God even when we cannot see or understand every situation we face in our lives. We obey because we have faith in God’s character and love for us. Likewise faith empowers us to tap into God’s abundant supply of grace to walk uprightly through the power of the Holy Spirit. This walk of the Spirit is life-changing because it is the Spirit that helps us to act and behave like sons and daughters. We are no longer slaves to our old nature but have power over it. While the Law cannot help us to overcome the flesh or do evil things, the Spirit alone is more than enough to help us overcome sin and temptation.
If we depend on the law to justify us, it is not just the Ten Commandments but an absolute and complete obedience in its entirety. If we break one law intentionally or unintentionally, we become guilty of breaking all of the law and its commandments.
Instead of wanting us to obey Him legalistically by our human effort and strength, God writes his laws in our hearts (Hebrews 10:24-25). Through following the prompting of the Spirit living in us to grasp our true identity and inheritance in God, we will understand, grow a heartfelt desire, and receive supernatural power to obey God living a holy life.
© Copyright Richard Tan, 2019.
All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the New King James Version®.
Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.