October 1, 2017
preached by Don Willeman
Time of Reflection Quotations
“To be trusted is a greater compliment than being loved.”
~ George MacDonald (1824-1905), Scottish author and minister
“A relationship with no trust is like a cell phone with no service, all you can do is play games.”
“I could not have faith in God if I did not think he wanted to be favorable and kind to me. This in turn makes me feel kindly disposed toward him, and I am moved to trust him with all my heart…. Faith must spring up and flow from the blood and wounds and death of Christ. If you see in these that God is so kindly disposed toward you that he even gives his own Son for you, then your heart in turn must grow sweet and disposed toward God….”
“The law says, ‘do this,’ and it is never done. Grace says, ‘believe in this,’ and everything is already done.”
“…if this article [of justification through faith alone] stands, the church stands; if this article collapses, the church collapses.”
~ Martin Luther (1483-1546), German reformer
“Grace binds you with far stronger cords than…obligation…. Grace is free, but when once you take it, you are bound forever to the Giver and bound to catch the spirit of the Giver. Like produces like. Grace makes you gracious, the Giver makes you give.”
~ E. Stanley Jones (1884-1973), Methodist missionary and theologian
“The radical gospel of justification by faith alone does not allow for a middle-of-the-road position. Either one must proclaim it as unconditionally as possible, or forget it.”
~ Gerhard Forde (1927-2005), Lutheran theologian
“Self-justification and judging others go together, as justification by grace and serving others go together”
~ Dietrich Bonhoeffer (1909-1945), German theologian executed by the Nazis
Romans 4:2-16 (NIV)
2 If, in fact, Abraham was justified by works, he had something to boast about—but not before God. 3 What does Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness.”
4 Now to the one who works, wages are not credited as a gift but as an obligation. 5 However, to the one who does not work but trusts God who justifies the ungodly, their faith is credited as righteousness. 6 David says the same thing when he speaks of the blessedness of the one to whom God credits righteousness apart from works:
7 “Blessed are those
whose transgressions are forgiven,
whose sins are covered.
8 Blessed is the one
whose sin the Lord will never count
9 Is this blessedness only for the circumcised, or also for the uncircumcised? We have been saying that Abraham’s faith was credited to him as righteousness. 10 Under what circumstances was it credited? Was it after he was circumcised, or before? It was not after, but before! 11 And he received circumcision as a sign, a seal of the righteousness that he had by faith while he was still uncircumcised. So then, he is the father of all who believe but have not been circumcised, in order that righteousness might be credited to them. 12 And he is then also the father of the circumcised who not only are circumcised but who also follow in the footsteps of the faith that our father Abraham had before he was circumcised.
13 It was not through the law that Abraham and his offspring received the promise that he would be heir of the world, but through the righteousness that comes by faith. 14 For if those who depend on the law are heirs, faith means nothing and the promise is worthless,15 because the law brings wrath. And where there is no law there is no transgression.
16 Therefore, the promise comes by faith, so that it may be by grace and may be guaranteed to all Abraham’s offspring—not only to those who are of the law but also to those who have the faith of Abraham. He is the father of us all.