December 7, 2017. Acts 20:1-3, Romans 1-3.
When I was a student in high school and college, I remember how if a teacher repeated something more than once it was probably going to be something on the test. If the teacher repeated it four times, there was 100% certainty it would be on the test. In today’s passage there is a repeat like this, from God, for believers.
Romans 1:16-17 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, "The just shall live by faith."
The first part of this statement, should be the testimony of every believer. We are not ashamed of the gospel of Christ because we have believed and personally experienced God’s power in our salvation.
This, now, is the picture of our life as believers:
Romans 3:22-24 …the righteousness of God, through faith in Jesus Christ, to all and on all who believe. For there is no difference; for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,
We have believed, by means of faith, in Jesus Christ and experienced God’s power of going “from faith to faith.” Literally from “out of the realm of faith, into the realm of faith.” From a sinner falling short of His glory, to one who is now justified or righteous by God’s grace. That is power.
And then there is the simple statement, "The just shall live by faith." Simple, yet a statement that God repeats four times in His word. We see it here, in Habakkuk 2:4, Galatians 3:11 and Hebrews 10:38.
The just, the righteous, the believer, the person who has experienced the power of God, lives his or her life by faith.
Faith in Jesus Christ is how we experienced God’s power of going from a life out of the realm of faith, into a realm of faith. Now we live each day the same way. We continue to believe what God says and by faith do it. We believe Him when He says, “But I say to you, love your enemies…” (Matthew 5:44) and by faith we do just that. We believe Him when He says, “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise prophecies. Test all things; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil.” (1Thessalonians 5:16-22) and we do just that.
How exciting to experience the power of God through salvation. How much more exciting to experience that same power everyday as we live by faith.