Unlimited: From First to Last
Apr 14, 2022 187
…a righteousness that is by faith from first to last… (Romans 1:17b)
Without question, we need righteousness in order to be saved. How are we to find this righteousness? The Gospel is the answer to that great question.
Paul has just written that the Gospel reveals the righteousness of God. Now he strongly emphasises that this righteousness is by faith. Paul always contrasts faith and works in his writings. The implication of what he is saying here is that the righteousness of God is not found through works, but through faith. What is faith? Faith is a relationship of trust in Jesus.
This righteousness is by faith from first to last.
Many years ago, when I was confused about the Gospel, I thought that I had to be as good as I could be, and that God would make up the rest. A new Christian might not be very good so they would need more of a righteousness “top-up” than an older Christian who might have ended up closer to perfection. This kind of thinking is precisely what Paul is addressing here.
Paul tells us that this righteousness is “by faith from first to last.” The righteousness that God offers isn’t one that starts in faith and ends in works. Our experience of the righteousness of God begins by faith and ends by faith. Faith is all.
It is only natural for you to slip back into thinking that somehow something you are able to do can contribute in some way to your salvation. Yet Paul tells us that our righteous standing in Christ is “by faith from first to last.” If that is the case, what are you doing to ensure that your trust-relationship with Jesus remains as the centre of your life?