Counted as Righteousness

Romans 4

“For what does the Scripture say? ‘Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness.’ Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due. And to the one who does not work* but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness,” Romans 4:3-5.

(*I’d like to note that in this verse, the word “work” means to try to earn God’s approval, not holding a job or earning money.)

This is a section of scripture that I continually revisit. I often am tempted to think that I will be acceptable to God when I get this sin or issue in my life under control, and I find my heart drifting away from him because I think that he disapproves of me. This verse reminds me that just the opposite is true. I find great comfort in the words “justifies the UNgodly” – his plan has been to justify us ungodly people along! He knew that the deep recesses of my heart would be ugly! He is not surprised by any of this! What a relief to my soul!

“…His faith is counted as righteousness.” This is in sharp contrast to what I tend to believe: “her works will be counted as righteousness” or “her kicking that sin will be counted as righteousness.”

Our believing and trusting in Christ’s payment for our sin is what pleases God. When we trust God’s word in this, Jesus’ righteousness is credited to OUR account. Thank you, God, that your love for me does not depend on my performance for you!