September 17: Romans 4:1-12
Key Verse: Romans 4:10
Under what circumstances was it credited? Was it after he was circumcised, or before? It was not after, but before!
The Romans and the Greeks had to know the ins and outs of things before they followed or believed things; at least that is how we look at them nowadays and what it suggests through words like this. But if we look at all societies around the world we see these traits or similar traits because people like to find excuses not to do things!
The apostle tries to encourage the Romans by getting them to question the stories they have heard. If people simply follow the stories they have heard they tend to have a half-hearted belief in what they hear because they have no proof, only what others are telling them. But when they begin to question things they look for answers as well as looking for cracks in the stories.
Abraham is know as the Father of the Jews because God promised him he would be the father of a great nation. Abraham did not have many children but he is in the lineage of the nation. Abraham believed God before he took on this persona as the father of the nation; it was his belief in God which made this all possible, not the other way round.
All this talk about circumcision was raised to make the Romans ask questions about it and not just to get circumcised so they could be counted as ‘Christians!’ What makes us Christians – our belief in God and Jesus and the Holy Spirit. What makes people do things like get baptised or circumcised – for them to show others how much they believe in God!
Points to Ponder:
How do people know you are a Christian?
Will you try to be more open so others will know?