Read: Romans 4:1-12
It is quite clear why our teacher who instructs us in the truth of Scripture, should now ask this important question: What is the profit of your faith?
We have been instructed in all the truths that God has revealed in His word. We have been told that these truths are the objects of our faith. We have repeatedly recited our lessons.
“I believe in God the Father.”
“I believe in His only begotten Son.”
“I believe in all the work that Christ did from His birth to His exaltation and will do until His second coming.”
“I believe in the Holy Ghost.”
“I believe in a holy catholic church.”
“I believe in the resurrection of the body.”
“I believe in the forgiveness of sins.”
“I believe in life eternal.”
Now: what profit is there in the fact that we believe all these things? That is a good question.
The answer of the teacher in our classroom is quite surprising. He could have said: Faith makes all these truths our own possession and experience. He could have said: The profit is that God is our Father. Christ is our Savior. Christ died for us. Christ is our Lord in heaven. We are members of the church of Christ. Oour sins are forgiven. We shall inherit eternal life.
`But our teacher does not do that. Rather, he chooses to point us to one truth, which, if true, makes all the other truths ours as well. If we are righteous, we possess all the other blessings of salvation as well.
It is like a man in prison for an enormous debt, which he cannot pay. He is there until the debt is paid. But someone comes along and pays the entire debt. He can then be released from prison and enjoy all the blessings of freedom with his wife and children, his friends and relatives, and in God’s creation. But the important thing is that he is legally declared to have no debt.
And so our teacher points out to us what a wonderful power faith is. Faith believes “that we are righteous in Christ, before God.” When faith can and does believe that, then faith can also believe everything else. But to be righteous is first.
So our teacher takess great pains to point out several things about this “profit” of faith.
First, we are righteous in Christ.
Second, we are righteous before God.
Third, we come to the knowledge of our righteousness only by faith.
Fourth, this means that we do not come to our righteousness by our works.
Fifth, we do not even come to the knowledge of our righteousness because of the worthiness of our faith.
Sixth, we become righteous by faith in Christ. The only way we possess that righteousness approved of God is to appropriate by faith the righteousness of Christ.
Prof. Herman Hanko (Wife: Wilma)
Ordained: October 1955
Pastorates: Hope, Walker, MI - 1955; Doon, IA - 1963; Professor to the Protestant Reformed Seminary - 1965
Emeritus: 2001Website: www.sermonaudio.com/search.asp?speakeronly=true&currsection=sermonsspeaker&keyword=Prof._Herman_Hanko
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