Skip to main content

Romans 4:9-10: Is This Blessing Then Only For The Circumcised?


Romans 4:9–10
[9] Is this blessing then only for the circumcised, or also for the uncircumcised? For we say that faith was counted to Abraham as righteousness. [10] How then was it counted to him? Was it before or after he had been circumcised? It was not after, but before he was circumcised. (ESV)

Paul is talking here about the blessing of having our sins not counted against us. He is talking about the blessing of God crediting to our account his righteousness. This is a blessing beyond any earthly treasure. At the end of our days we will take none of our earthly treasures with us, but if we have God's righteousness credited to our account we will inherit eternal life.

The Jews felt like they deserved this blessing because they had been circumcised and were the recipients of the Law. If the Jews were to be honest they were not too happy about the Gentiles being offered this blessing of receiving God's righteousness. These Gentiles were uncircumcised and did not even have the Law that God gave the Jews.

Paul is making the point here that God's righteousness is a gift that is available to all people, Jews and Gentiles. Paul asks the rhetorical question, "Is this blessing then only for the circumcised, or also for the uncircumcised? Faith was counted to Abraham as righteousness. God declared Abraham righteous before he was circumcised.

Abraham's faith preceded his effort to obey God's law, in particular the rite of circumcision. Abraham was 99 years old when he was circumcised. Ouch! He was willing to obey a God whom he already knew. Abraham had placed his faith in God and been made righteous. Circumcision was not a means of salvation, but a willing obedience to a loving God.

Do you look down on anyone as being unworthy of God's blessing? Do you withhold sharing the Gospel, thereby keeping the knowledge of God's blessing from those who do not deserve it? Remind yourself that we are all unworthy, but all equally invited to the throne of God's grace.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Romans 8:18: For I Consider That The Sufferings Of This Present Time Are Not Worth Comparing

Romans 8:18
[18] For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. (ESV)

Perspective. What an important word. Let's be honest. We do not like the idea of suffering. We will do almost anything to avoid any kind of suffering. Some churches have gone so far as to preach against the idea of suffering, declaring it to not be a part of the true believer's life. Paul is not shy about the topic.

Paul uses the sufferings of this present time as a means to consider the greater glory that awaits us. Perspective. Paul is not in any way attempting to diminish our suffering. A view toward eternity puts our suffering in a proper understanding. Yes, our suffering is terrible. In the grand scheme of eternity it is not even worth comparison.

Maybe you are thinking that Paul does not know what he is talking about when it comes to suffering. In 2 Corinthians 11 Paul describes countless beatings, often near death, being ston…

Romans 15:14: I Myself Am Satisfied About You, My Brothers

Romans 15:14
[14] I myself am satisfied about you, my brothers, that you yourselves are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge and able to instruct one another. (ESV)

The Apostle Paul was a strong man. His words to the churches in all of his letters are full of doctrinal truth and instruction that are not for the faint of heart. In this letter to the church at Rome he had to correct them in their understanding of how to deal with issues that could potentially divide them. Paul had never even been to Rome yet. He had not met these believers.

Paul is telling the church at Rome in this verse that the reason they were able to receive his strong words was because of their spiritual maturity. He declares that they are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge and able to instruct one another. This is an incredible compliment that Paul would not offer to every church.

This concept of being filled with goodness and knowledge speaks of a group of believers who had listened to the Word of…

Romans 15:16: To Be A Minister Of Christ Jesus To The Gentiles In The Priestly Service Of The Gospel Of God

Romans 15:16
[16] to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles in the priestly service of the gospel of God, so that the offering of the Gentiles may be acceptable, sanctified by the Holy Spirit. (ESV)

The time of the Early Church was a time of great transition. Up until Christ coming and bringing redemption to all who believer the people of faith were the Jews. If you wanted to worship God the only appropriate way was to go through a priest who would offer sacrifices on your behalf to God. All of the sacrificial system was fulfilled in Christ. Now, there was a new way to righteousness.

This time of transition was a challenge for all involved. The Jews had to move from an approach to God that involved keeping the Law. The Law was fulfilled in Christ. Now the way of salvation was a way of faith. There were some traditional aspects that were now gone. It was hard for them to move away from their traditions. It is hard for all of us to move from our traditions.

For the Gentile convert…