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Monday, August 21, 2006

Genesis 15 Verse 6; Romans 4 Verse 3; James 2 Verse 23; Genesis 22

Genesis 15:6 is a verse that is cited in several different contexts. Let's look at the verse itself:


Genesis 15:6 (New International Version)
New International Version (NIV)
Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society

6 Abram believed the LORD, and he credited it to him as righteousness.



In my view, two of the most important citations are as follows [1] [2]:


Romans 4:1-5 (New International Version)
New International Version (NIV)
Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society

1What then shall we say that Abraham, our forefather, discovered in this matter? 2If, in fact, Abraham was justified by works, he had something to boast about—but not before God. 3What does the Scripture say? "Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness."
4Now when a man works, his wages are not credited to him as a gift, but as an obligation. 5However, to the man who does not work but trusts God who justifies the wicked, his faith is credited as righteousness.
James 2:21-24 (New International Version)
New International Version (NIV)
Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society

21Was not our ancestor Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? 22You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did. 23And the scripture was fulfilled that says, "Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness," and he was called God's friend. 24You see that a person is justified by what he does and not by faith alone.



Yep, Romans and James. Faith and works. Isaac and Isaac.

Isaac and Isaac. Both verses talk about Isaac, but in different ways.

Paul refers to the story in Genesis 15:1-6, in which God promises Abraham that he will have an heir. Abraham believed at this time (Genesis 15:6), showing his faith.

By chapter 16, Abram's faith must have wavered a bit, because he figured out another way to have an heir. By chapter 18, God's way was again foretold, and by chapter 21 God's promise began to be fulfilled. Needless to say I'm skimming over a bunch of stuff, but you know that a lot had happened to Abram/Abraham in the years since God visited him in Genesis 15.

Which brings us to Genesis 22, the incident cited by James. In fact, James says that the Genesis 15 scripture was fulfilled in Genesis 22. Abraham's faith had not lain fallow, but had continued to develop to a point where this "work" of placing Isaac on the altar could proceed from his deep faith.

2 Comments:

Blogger Jennifer said...

My bet is on James. ;)

8/22/2006 10:43 AM  
Blogger Ontario Emperor said...

I thought so. :)

8/22/2006 5:25 PM  

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