The faith that counts for God

In the reading we did last night, here at home, about the faith that counts for God, in the series “Greatest topics of the Bible“, we read Galatians 5.6. Faith does not live alone. When someone realizes the truth of the gospel and the freedom offered by the Lord Jesus Christ, he is soon moved, by faith, to take the action of obedience.

For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision carries any weight—the only thing that matters is faith working through love.
Ga 5.6 NET.

The Galatians were being led to accept a false gospel, based on meritorious works extracted from the law of Moses. Circumcision represented the commitment to this approach to the law.

Paul’s realm of interest is “in Christ.” His concern focuses upon that which permits one to be united with Christ and which maintains that union. The act of circumcision changes nothing in relation to Christ.

Faith does change that relation. But not just any type of faith. It has to be the faith that works through love. The faith that counts for God works, moves, acts. The faith without the works of obedience and love is dead, says James. And Paul agrees. Even in a threatening context like the letter to the Galatians, in which Paul must combat works of merit, he does not hesitate in affirming a working faith.

About this very verse, V.P. Furnish wrote that faith “finds expression in man’s obedience to the commandment of love” IOVC.

Faith not only works, but is motivated by love. It has the right motivation, responding to God’s love with a heart full of love.

In this way, such a faith counts for God and launches man, by means of the gospel, into a loving relationship with God. Faith then becomes faithfulness.

Loving Father, thank you for the truth of the gospel that brings forth faith and gives impulse to action motivated by love. May we never lose it!


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J. Randal Matheny

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