How is Eternal Life Received? Faith Alone
Eric: Why is this subject so important?
- Understanding how we receive eternal life is the most important set of truths you can ever know.
- If we hear a lie, and trust in it, we will suffer the consequences of believing that lie forever.
Proverbs 14:12 There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.
- There are no second chances after we die, so we must be sure that we are trusting in the truth and not in a lie.
Victor: Was Abraham a perfect man?
- No, he Lied about his relationship to his wife: Genesis 12 and 20
- Fathered a child by Hagar: Genesis 17
Mr. Binney: Was David a perfect man?
- No, he acted like an insane man: 1 Samuel 21
- Lied to priest causing the death of several people: 1 Samuel 21
- Committed adultery with Bathsheba: 2 Samuel 11
- Murdered Uriah the husband of Bathsheba: 2 Samuel 11
Pastor Joel: Why are the details you shared important to this discussion?
Romans 4:3, 7-8 For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works, saying, blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.
- These men broke God’s laws on several points, and therefore deserved to be condemned just like every other man who has ever lived.
- These men were sinners, and were guilty of some of the most serious sins we know about: murder, adultery, and lying.
- If God judged them on the basis of their performance, they are both in Hell right now.
- If God justified them though he was looking at their performance, then God has been unjust.
- If they were justified, and God was not unjust, then they must have been justified on the basis of someone else’s righteousness and not their own.
- His point in mentioning Abraham, was to show that Abraham was justified before their was a Mosaic Law or circumcision, therefore what the Jews were trusting in, was not what Abraham was trusting in for his justification.
- The purpose for mentioning David, is to show that David understood justification the same way.
Eric: When was Abraham justified?
- He was justified in Genesis 15, which was before his sin with Hagar and before his willingness to offer his son Isaac as a sacrifice to God
- This means, that his justification was not affect negatively by his sin with Hagar
- His justification was not secured because he willingly obeyed God and was willing to sacrifice his son in Genesis 22.
Victor: Why is justification by faith alone?
Romans 4:2, 4 For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God. Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.
- If our works played a part, we would be proud in out salvation.
Ephesians 2:8-9 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.
- If our works played a part in our salvation, then salvation would be a reward.
Mr. Binney: What hinders some men from being justified?
Romans 4:5-6 But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness. Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works,
- Self righteousness: An unwillingness to stop working for our salvation, and to rather trust in what Christ has done for us. This is not the only hindrance, but it is a huge obstacle for many, especially those who are very religious.
Pastor Joel: Does strong faith bring eternal life?
- No, the point is not the strength of our faith, but rather the object of our faith.
- Illustration: Two hanging bridges at Kakum Forrest. If one has a fault and is weak, no matter how much we trust it, when we put our full weight on the bridge it will collapse. The strength of the bridge is not in my faith, but in the bridge itself.
Pastor Joel: What is the only object of our faith that can truly save us?
Romans 4:3, 5 For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness. But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness.
Notice the following important phrases:
- Abraham believed God
- To the one who believes on Him who justifies the ungodly.
- God and His gospel must be the only object of your faith: Christ’s person, Christ’s work, and Christ’s righteousness all offered to us freely and based upon the faithfulness of God must be the only object of our faith. We cannot add our own efforts and goodness to the object of our faith. The moment we introduce an additional object of our faith, we are no longer truly trust in God.
Eric: How would you challenge our audience?
- Have you been converted?
- Have you repented toward God, turning from any other object of faith and placed your faith alone in Christ and His finished work on the cross?
- There is no guarantee that you will live another day. Do not put off this very important decision to trust Christ.
- If you die today, are you sure that you would go to be with the Lord, or would you go to face His eternal wrath after the judgment day?