I’m guessing you’ve all heard the phrase, “It’s better to give than to receive.” But do you know the origin of that phrase? Jesus said something very similar. Specifically, he said, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” (Acts 20:35)
Around Christmas time, you’ll hear parents and grandparents reminding children of this truth. Kids love to receive gifts so much, that it’s usually a good idea to remind them that if no-one is a giver of gifts, then no one will receive gifts.
This Sunday at Living Shepherd we’ll see a similar lesson. As Paul teaches the Romans (and us!) about faith in Romans chapter 4, he makes a similar point. Faith is simply receiving the grace of God by trusting in his promises.
Take Abraham for example. Abraham wasn’t considered righteous, and thus worthy of heaven, because of anything he did. Abraham’s righteousness did not come by doing but by believing. What did Abraham do? Nothing! God did it all! God made the promises. God gave the inheritance. God gave Abraham and Sarah their son and the promise of a later descendant who would be THE blessing all nations need.
Abraham merely received the promises of God by believing that the One who made the promises was faithful. And then what happened? God acted again and credited this faith to Abraham as righteousness. This is the righteousness that every person needs to stand in God’s presence. This is the righteousness that the sinful woman at the well, and even faithful Abraham lacked. This is the righteousness God gives.
Jesus died for the world’s sin. That means he died for your sin! Believe it! That means God forgives our wickedness and calls us righteous—no, even more—he gives us righteousness in the place of our wickedness. This is the living water that quenches the thirst of every believing soul!
Looking forward to digging into the truths of God’s gifts with you this Sunday!