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Faith Enables Hope

Lent 2023

Read Romans 4:13–25

13 For the promise to Abraham and his offspring that he would be heir of the world did not come through the law but through the righteousness of faith. 14 For if it is the adherents of the law who are to be the heirs, faith is null and the promise is void. 15 For the law brings wrath, but where there is no law there is no transgression.

16 That is why it depends on faith, in order that the promise may rest on grace and be guaranteed to all his offspring—not only to the adherent of the law but also to the one who shares the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all, 17 as it is written, “I have made you the father of many nations”—in the presence of the God in whom he believed, who gives life to the dead and calls into existence the things that do not exist. 18 In hope he believed against hope, that he should become the father of many nations, as he had been told, “So shall your offspring be.” 19 He did not weaken in faith when he considered his own body, which was as good as dead (since he was about a hundred years old), or when he considered the barrenness of Sarah's womb. 20 No unbelief made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, 21 fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised. 22 That is why his faith was “counted to him as righteousness.” 23 But the words “it was counted to him” were not written for his sake alone, 24 but for ours also. It will be counted to us who believe in him who raised from the dead Jesus our Lord, 25 who was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification.

It depends on faith, in order that the promise may rest on grace. Romans 4:16

It was faith – unconditional certainty – that God would do the impossible. It was neither Abraham’s lineage nor other conditions. It was simply trusting everything in God’s hands. Abraham expected God to do the impossible and would have been shocked if the impossible did not happen. Abraham’s faith was based upon the nature of God – omnipotent, merciful, and dependable. He believed in God who says, “I the LORD do not change” (Malachi 3:6).

Paul stressed that this is a universal principle. For all who expect God to be God, it will be counted as righteousness. God’s will is accomplished.

Once, my father-in-law needed to purchase mission property. He found it and agreed upon the price, promising to pay cash in one month. When fellow workers challenged his agreement, he reported, “God will provide.” They told no one about the agreement. Thirty days later, he paid cash for the property. God still does what we consider to be impossible.


Gracious God, help us to have faith where we cannot see and trust to see the impossible accomplished by your will. Amen.

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