1 Chronicles 26:12-32; Romans 4:13-17; Psalms 14:7; Proverbs 6:16-19
NT: “This is why the promise is by faith, so that it may be according to grace, to guarantee it to all the descendants — not only to the one who is of the law but also to the one who is of Abraham’s faith. He is the father of us all. As it is written: I have made you the father of many nations — in the presence of the God in whom he believed, the one who gives life to the dead and calls things into existence that do not exist.” (Romans 4:16-17 CSB)
There are many ways that people try to get into God’s “good graces.” They try to be loving… they try to be kind… they try to be patient… they try to be selfless… they try to be generous… they try to do good, etc. All of those are good things that are all in our capacity, as people made in the image of God, to do. However, God does not bestow His grace because of things we are able to do through our own effort. God bestows his grace through faith. Faith is the opposite of trusting in ourselves. Faith comes when we stop trusting in our effort, our abilities, our intellect, our gifting, our strength; and trust someone else – namely God – to do something on our behalf. God gave Abraham a promise. It was a promise that was beyond anything Abraham could do on his own. Now there were times when Abraham tried to “help God out” and attempted to fulfill the promise on his own (which made a big mess of things). But ultimately Abraham had to place faith in God – the God who created all things and could bring glorious things out of nothing – and trust God to fulfill the promise that He made. Abraham’s faith – not his efforts – pleased God and God declared him to be righteous. God has made a promise to all humanity: That He will save us from the certain death of sin through the death of His Son… that through His Son’s glorious resurrection from the dead, He will give us a glorious new life… that Jesus the Son, after ascending to heaven will send the Holy Spirit to fill us, abide with us, and lead us as we are transformed and made more and more holy. Just as God fulfilled His promise to Abraham because of his faith in God, so God will fulfill the promise He made to all of us who place faith in God and in His Son Jesus Christ. We can’t save ourselves. We have to trust in Christ’s sinless life, sacrificial death, and glorious resurrection. When we do that, we are saved and declared righteous… and as we follow Jesus in faith and are filled with the Holy Spirit through faith, we are made righteous from glory to glory by God’s grace through faith.