Whom Say Ye That I Am?
In what is probably the oldest book in the Word of God, Job asks the question, How should a man be just with God? In the end Job discovered that he of himself had no righteousness and had to confess, I am vile ...I have heard of Thee by the hearing of the ear: but now mine eye seeth Thee. Wherefore I abhor myself, and repent in dust and ashes. Job had discovered that righteousness is only of God. When Job finally spoke that which was right of God, then righteousness was given to him.
Next in time, we find these words concerning Abraham, And he believed in the Lord; and He counted it to him for righteousness ( Gen 15:6). Abraham was justified by faith and this passage is quoted by Paul in Romans 4:3. Paul says that if Abraham had been justified by works, then he could have boasted about it, and then quotes this verse to prove that Abraham was justified by faith.
Both these examples are concerning Gentiles and happened before the giving of the law at Sinai. So we must conclude that justification by faith is not administration al truth. It is truth for all time.
Again we find it set forth in Hab 2:4, Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him: but the just shall live by his faith. The apostle Paul quoted this passage, each with a different emphasis, 3 times in his writings; Rom 1:17; Gal 3:11; Heb 10:38. See notes in Companion Bible.
In ignorance of the Scriptures, many have fallen into the error of thinking and teaching that justification by faith was originated by Paul and that it was a part of the mystery which had been hid in God from ages and generations. But the foregoing paragraphs will soon dispel such an idea. Furthermore, when we use the concordance, we discover that in the proclaiming of the mystery in his epistles after Acts 28:28 he mentions justification just once in connection with believers, and that is in Titus 3:7. So we must conclude that justification has to do with life, a future life ( Hab 2:4) and not with administration truth.
Justification is by grace and not by the deeds of the law, as Paul insists over and over. It was a part of his gospel of the grace of God, but it was known ages before that gospel was made known. The gospel of the grace of God was the good news that Gentile Christians from Acts 10 to 28 could partake of the blessings and hope of Israel without keeping Israel's law. That was no mystery, for Paul goes on to some length to show that it was not unknown in former ages (see Romans 10 and 11). Now since the law was given to the Jews and they have been off the picture for close to 2000 years, just where is the law today?
Paul declared before Agrippa in Acts 26:22 that from the beginning of his ministry to that point he had said none other things than what could be found in the prophets and Moses. And he goes on to outline his Acts ministry up to that point by stressing the fact that he had preached the sufferings and resurrection of Christ (the Jehovah of Israel) and that He would show light unto the People (the Jews) and the Gentiles.
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