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A Faith That Receives

Daily Reading: Romans 3

 

But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it— the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. (Romans 3.21-25)

 

Devotional Thought: Our chapter today is Romans 3.  It is a classic chapter dealing with righteousness.  What is righteousness?  It is simply living in right relationship with God, fulfilling what that relationship requires.  God determines what and who is righteous.  The standard is set by him.

 

The Jews found their righteousness in fulfilling the law.  Strict Jews were very careful to do exactly what the law required.  They fulfilled their relationship with God through the law.  But Paul taught that the law was only a schoolmaster to bring us to Christ where we would find a righteousness not dependent on us, but on God.  It was a righteousness by faith in Jesus Christ.  Remember, however, that faith isn’t merely mental assent; it is acting on what you believe.  Placing your entire trust in God and completely obeying God.

 

Verse 23 is often quoted by personal evangelists in leading someone to Christ.  I use it myself in presenting the ABC’s of salvation.  “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”  But, somehow I have missed the impact of the next phrase: “and are justified freely by his grace.”  What is the subject of that phrase?  All!  Yes, all have sinned, but all are also justified freely by his grace!  No one need perish, for God, in Christ, has justified all.  The work is done.  All that remains is for me to accept it by faith and follow Jesus!

 

Have you made that decision?  Are you trusting in Jesus - Jesus alone - for righteousness (a right relationship) before God?

 

Prayer: Lord, I believe!  "Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow."  What has washed away my sin?  Nothing but the blood of Jesus!  I thank you, O Lord!

 

Psalm of the Day: 22.20-24

20 Deliver my soul from the sword, my precious life from the power of the dog!

21 Save me from the mouth of the lion! You have rescued me from the horns of the wild oxen!

22 I will tell of your name to my brothers; in the midst of the congregation I will praise you:

23 You who fear the LORD, praise him! All you offspring of Jacob, glorify him, and stand in awe of him, all you offspring of Israel!

24 For he has not despised or abhorred the affliction of the afflicted, and he has not hidden his face from him, but has heard, when he cried to him.

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