NBC SUNDAY SCHOOL LESSON FOR JULY 18, 2021 : TOPIC – THE FAITH OF ABRAHAM
NBC SUNDAY SCHOOL LESSON
Sunday, July 18, 2021
TOPIC:THE FAITH OF ABRAHAM
Devotional Reading: Genesis 15:1-6
Background Scripture reading: Romans 4
Lesson Scripture reading: Romans 4:1-12
Golden Text: Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness. Romans 4:3b
By the end of the lesson,.class members should be able to:
i. Explain the doctrinhe of justification, according to the
ii. State the source of salvation and how it can be earned;
iii. Renew their faith in God.
The central theme of the first.few chapters of the book of Romans is the need for salvation for both Gentiles and Jews because they are both sinners. He categorically stated in his letter that both need the gift.of salvation. He cited an example with an Old Testament hero (Abraham) as a model of justification through faith because he believed God and it was credited to him righteousness.
According to Genesis account, Abraham found favour with God, as he trusted the promises made to him.(Genesis 15:6)
Consequently, he served as a prototype for all believers whose example is worthy of emulation. The central and original message of Paul is that salvation is by God’s grace. However, he did not completely discard the Old Testament understanding of.the law. Abraham is critical in understanding God’s grace as he illustrated God’s righteousness and justification, which is by faith alone. God declared Abraham righteous through the demonstration of his faith and not his works or obedience to keeping the law of qualifies him as the spiritual father of circumcision. This the Gentiles who believe as well as the Jews. The focus of today’s lesson is theexample
of Abraham’s faith, which confirms Paul’s claim that the only way God can put people Himself is through right with faith (Romans 3:21).
THE LESSON EXPLAINED
A. The Example of Abraham’s Faith Romans 4:1-3
The last few verses of chapter 3 of the book of Romans describe the way of salvation for Gentiles and Jews and how people are put right with God through faith. In chapter 4 Paul began with ain explanation of Abraham’s experience and his justification by virtue of his faith.
In his response to the questioon in verse 1, Paul explained that if Abraham was put right with God by his works, he would have had something toboast about but not in the sight of God. him, the case of Abraham is evidence that God only put people right with Him when they have faith and not necessarily by keeping the laws. Paul was able to prove scripture from the that Abraham was justified by faith and not his works.
According to verse 3, he said, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness. The word Justification is the same as defense or to be excused. Paul’s explanation in the passage is that Abraham righteous was declared because he believed God, as it is recorded in Genesis 15:6. The Jews thought that Abraham was perfect example who kept the Law, but Paul renounced this claim. He said Abraham was a perfect person who had faith and not just good works. This is contrary to righteousness that comes from works, which might make someone to boast. However, no one can boast before God (4:1-2).
Therefore, the basis for justification can be found in Abraham’s faith in God and not by works. Abraham did not earn his righteousness by works; rather it was God who credited it to him.
Therefore, we can say that it was faith- based. Indeed, it was because of his obedience that he received the promise of posterity (Genesis 26:4-5).
Discussion Time 1
1. Discuss how Abraham was justified, whether by faith or works.
2. Is there a connection between covenant and justification by faith?
B. Faith as a Condition for Righteousness Romans 4:4-8
Paul used an illustration of those who work and are paid their wages to explain the fact that such wages are not regarded as a gift but as an obligation. The reason is that it is something that has been earned as a result of work simply righteousness is not credited like the earnings a person done. put receives when he does a job.
On the contrary, only those who depend on faith and not their works those who believe in God_are justified. It is this faith that God reckons with to put them right with Himself. He cited an instance with the words of David in Psalm 32 verses 1 and 2 when he spoke of the blessedness of the man whom God righted regardless of anything the accepts as of the man whom God acceptts as righteous, regardless of anything the person does. In verses 7 and 8, Paul explained the concept of justification. He said, “Blessed are they whose transgressions are forgiven,.whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord will never count.against him.” Justification is a legal term, which means to be acquitted. Whoever is justified is pronounced, accepted and treated without any penalty but to enjoy all the privileges of the just. It is related to David’s confession when he said, our transgressionss are forgiven, our sins are covered and our sins God will not count against us (Psalm 32:7-8). Instead of God countinhg our sins against us, He pardons and refuses to count them against us. When God justifies sinners, He pronounces them righteous or He imputesrighteousness to them. He reckons and treats them as (legally) righteous just like in the business World. Those who work will have their wages “credited” to them as their right or obligation because they have earned them. This means that they are not freely given their wages but rather they earneod them through hard work. Indeed, if they were credited according to works, “credited would nothing the term mean so righteousness is not credited to the person who trusts in the law or works for salvation.
The truth about God.justifying the ungodly apart from works is a blessing state of (makarismos) meaning that when God has declared one righteous, He will never credit their sin to them.
Discussion Time 2
1. Is righteousness imputed or earned?
2. Discuss the difference between faith and works.
C. Abraham’s Faith Versus Circumcision Romans 4:9-12
Paul’s statement in verse 9 is clear. He explained thatthe blessedness of those whose sins are forgiven,which he mentioned in verses 7 and 8 does not belong only to those who are circumcised. He affirmed that it also belongs those who to are not circumcised but have faith. After all, Abraham’s faith was crediteed.to him as righteousness and not under any other circumstance.
The righteousness of Abraham did not come as a result of his circumcision but by faith because he was declared righteous before he was (4:9-10).
Therefore, he received circumcised the sign of circumcision as a seal of the righteousness he already had by faith. Later, he became the father of everyone who has faith, whether they are uncircumciseed or circumcised (411-12).
Paul’s claim is right about Abraham’s faith and circumcision. It should be noted that God accepted Abraham as righteous in Genesis 15 before he was.circumcised in chapter 17. He only received.the sign of circumcision as confirmation of the righteousness demonstrated by faith (4:11a).
Therefore, God’s acceptance of Abraham as.righteous was not as a result of his circumcision. In his first letter to the church in Corinth, Paul.made it clear that circumcision Was not necessairy for a person to be a part of the people of God (1 Corinthians 7:19; Galatians 5:6).
Abraham’s example emphasises a faith that is not based on the rite of circumcision or any other foundation other than God’s.grace and mercy. Even today, the only thing needed to be saved is faith in the Lord Jesus who died and resurrected. Any other condition to earn the gift of salvation is not biblical and shouldn’t be discouraged.
Discussion Time 3
1. Abrahams justification did not come through the rite of circumcision. Discuss.
2 Discuss some ungodly conditions people give today in order to be.saved and how to correct such errors.
Fellowship and Ministry Building Activity
i. We often sing a song. “Abrahams blessings are mine.” Ask class members to suggest what they can do to have the kind of Abraham’s faith.
ii. Ask class members to identify a mature Christian they admire and write aletter of encouragement to him.
1. God is more interested in the circumcision of the heart than the physical body.
2. Our salvation cannot be earned except through faith in Jesus Christ.
3. No one can claim to be righteous by his/her Own effort.
4. Happy are those whose sins are forgiven.
5. The gift of salvation is for all peoples of the world.
6. Abraham is the spiritual
father of those who believe.