to keep promises.

Romans 5:6–11 (NKJV)

For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only that, but we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.

Instead of dying for people who are righteous, Christ died to make people righteous. And even that is just to make it so that people are credited with righteousness, to reconcile them to God. How does that work?

Note that Abraham believed God’s promise to him (which was a pretty wild promise) and that was credited to him as righteousness.

But what is it that we can believe that gets us credited with righteousness? Surely, it’s not God’s promise to Abraham.

No, but it’s the same faith. Drill into the details and the connection becomes clear. What was it exactly that Abraham believed?

Abraham believed that what God promised would come to pass. So, what’s the key to that?

It’s not believing that God’s promise is sincere—of course it’s sincere—it’s believing that God can do it.

In other words, Abraham believed that God really is God. In practice, that means believing in miracles.

This is why Paul emphasized that Abraham knew for sure that what God promised was impossible. It couldn’t have just been wishful thinking; it had to be faith. Only a miracle could make Sarah a mom.

So, what is our faith?

It’s faith that Jesus is who He says He is. If He isn’t, then everything crumbles.

But if He is, then He has the power to keep His promises. That’s the key.

This is inseparable from believing in His resurrection. The two go hand-in-hand. You can’t have one without the other.

If you’re going to believe in miracles, it helps to have seen a few. This is part of how tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope.

You have to walk the walk to get there. Without trials, and the prayers they spawn, you don’t grow.

Christianity doesn’t live on the couch.

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Mike Slay

As a mathematician, inventor, and ruling elder in the Presbyterian Church in America, Mike Slay brings an analytical, conversational, and even whimsical approach to the daily study of God's Word.