Summary: The Bible teaches that faith is the key to everything for the Christian. By faith we come to Christ. By faith we live our Christian lives with joy and gladness.
Faith to Faith
Text: Romans 1:17
Gullible. It never ceases to amaze me just how gullible people are. When P. T. Barnum said, "There’s a sucker born every minute," he was right. It seems that there is no limit to what we will believe.
Listen to some of the titles that have appeared in the tabloids found in grocery store checkout lines: Cow Mattresses Help Cows Produce More Milk - Mom On Diet Of Only Chicken, Lays Huge Egg - World War II Bomber Found On The Moon - Women Gives Birth To Two-Year-Old Baby: Child Walks And Talks In Three Days - Adam And Eve’s Bones Found In Asia: Eve Was A Space Alien.
The sad thing is that many people believe this nonsense. Being gullible is certainly a word that can be used to describe many people. But gullible has also been used to describe Christians. Some people who consider themselves to be logical or rational, believe that Christians are gullible for their faith in God.
We believe in miracles and in an unseen God and (to them) that is evidence of our being gullible. My friend there is nothing “gullible” about believing in the Lord.
The Bible teaches that faith is the key to everything for the Christian. By faith we come to Christ. By faith we live our Christian lives with joy and gladness. Without faith it is impossible to please God. (Hebrews 11:6) Faith is the core of our Christian living.
Our faith is the key to unlock the door to certainty (and eternity).
A famous Baptist evangelist once told the story of an elderly lady who was very upset by all of her real and imaginary troubles. Out of frustration her family told her, "Grandma, we’ve done all we can do for you. You’ll just have to trust God for the rest." A look of despair spread over her face as she replied, "Oh, dear, has it come to that?"
Church, it always comes to that, so we might as well begin with that!
Well, let’s begin with faith and see just what the Scripture has to say as it relates to our salvation and how we live our lives.
For in the Gospel a righteousness from God is revealed . . . (Romans 1:17a)
The apostle Paul has made the point that God works in a powerful way with the Word of God. Here, we have righteousness revealed to us.
In a lot of passages Paul points out the truth that everyone who believes in the message of the Gospel is saved from their sins.
This shows us that Jesus Christ is the center point of our faith.
When Paul writes that in the Gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, he is really speaking of the righteousness of the Lord Jesus Christ. You see, Jesus Christ is the message of the Gospel. The Gospel centers in the person of Christ. It is all about His sinless life, the atonement of our sins, and the supernatural resurrection. He is the center of the Gospel, so He is the center of our faith.
God’s righteousness is revealed to us in two very obvious ways.
1. Christ is righteousness – there is none other.
2. Christ imparts His righteousness to us – we have been cleansed from our sins.
This is the function and purpose of preaching the Gospel. This is why Paul emphasizes "Christ and Him crucified" in his preaching of the Gospel. This is why we celebrate the Lord’s Table together to remember the righteous One who was crucified in our place. This truth is the basis for our salvation. The Gospel is an explanation of why we can be saved.
We can only be saved because of what God has done. The Bible teaches that we are all sinners for two reasons:
1. By nature – we were born into sin
2. By choice – we ignore, deny and/or reject God’s plan of salvation
The fact is we are totally unable to save ourselves.
The Good News is this. Salvation has been made possible for us through God’s Son, Jesus Christ. We must first understand the message of the Gospel, so we will know how we can be saved.
Faith for Living
. . . a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: "The righteous will live by faith." (Romans 1:17b)
The way that the righteousness of God is given to us is only through faith. You see, that is why it is called Good News. If all we understand that Christ is righteous and we are not, that is not Good News. The Bad News is when we don’t have faith in this truth.
The righteousness of God is offered to us only if we exercise our faith to receive it. In fact, we are told that this righteousness comes to us by faith from first to last.