Day 16 - Saturday, March 10
Romans 4:13-17 "Beyond the Rules"
"For if what God promises is to be given to those who obey the law, then man's faith means nothing and God's promise is worthless." (TEV, v. 14)
This passage is filled with Paul's wonderful, twisted and convoluted phrasing which, when finished, means you really aren't sure just what he is saying! In particular, chapter four focuses on Abraham and the belief that Abraham is blessed not because he "followed the rules" but because he LIVED his faith and place absolute trust in God.
Faith isn't just a noun meaning to believe. It is a verb implying living in trusting obedience to God. It is more than following the rules. It is receiving from God and acting on that trust. The law, the rules, are guidelines, a necessary setting of boundaries within a community. But they are not the end in themselves. (I think of the many discussions on "intent of the law versus the letter of the law"). I have a framed quotation in my living room that reads, "Faith is not believing that God can, it is knowing that God will." It is in the knowing that we act in trust. Just following the rules isn't enough.
Note: My sons have informed me that "edit-repost" doesn't necessarily send out the email notification each time, so I guess I will go the route of a new post everyday from now on!