Parallel Bible results for Romans 4

New Living Translation

The Message Bible

Romans 4

NLT 1 Abraham was, humanly speaking, the founder of our Jewish nation. What did he discover about being made right with God? MSG 1 So how do we fit what we know of Abraham, our first father in the faith, into this new way of looking at things? NLT 2 If his good deeds had made him acceptable to God, he would have had something to boast about. But that was not God’s way. MSG 2 If Abraham, by what he did for God, got God to approve him, he could certainly have taken credit for it. But the story we're given is a God-story, not an Abraham-story. NLT 3 For the Scriptures tell us, “Abraham believed God, and God counted him as righteous because of his faith.” MSG 3 What we read in Scripture is, "Abraham entered into what God was doing for him, and that was the turning point. He trusted God to set him right instead of trying to be right on his own." NLT 4 When people work, their wages are not a gift, but something they have earned. MSG 4 If you're a hard worker and do a good job, you deserve your pay; we don't call your wages a gift. NLT 5 But people are counted as righteous, not because of their work, but because of their faith in God who forgives sinners. MSG 5 But if you see that the job is too big for you, that it's something only God can do, and you trust him to do it - you could never do it for yourself no matter how hard and long you worked - well, that trusting-him-to-do-it is what gets you set right with God, by God. Sheer gift. NLT 6 David also spoke of this when he described the happiness of those who are declared righteous without working for it: MSG 6 David confirms this way of looking at it, saying that the one who trusts God to do the putting-everything-right without insisting on having a say in it is one fortunate man: NLT 7 “Oh, what joy for those whose disobedience is forgiven, whose sins are put out of sight. MSG 7 Fortunate those whose crimes are carted off, whose sins are wiped clean from the slate. NLT 8 Yes, what joy for those whose record the LORD has cleared of sin.” MSG 8 Fortunate the person against whom the Lord does not keep score. NLT 9 Now, is this blessing only for the Jews, or is it also for uncircumcised Gentiles? Well, we have been saying that Abraham was counted as righteous by God because of his faith. MSG 9 Do you think for a minute that this blessing is only pronounced over those of us who keep our religious ways and are circumcised? Or do you think it possible that the blessing could be given to those who never even heard of our ways, who were never brought up in the disciplines of God? We all agree, don't we, that it was by embracing what God did for him that Abraham was declared fit before God? NLT 10 But how did this happen? Was he counted as righteous only after he was circumcised, or was it before he was circumcised? Clearly, God accepted Abraham before he was circumcised! MSG 10 Now think: Was that declaration made before or after he was marked by the covenant rite of circumcision? That's right, before he was marked. NLT 11 Circumcision was a sign that Abraham already had faith and that God had already accepted him and declared him to be righteous—even before he was circumcised. So Abraham is the spiritual father of those who have faith but have not been circumcised. They are counted as righteous because of their faith. MSG 11 That means that he underwent circumcision as evidence and confirmation of what God had done long before to bring him into this acceptable standing with himself, an act of God he had embraced with his whole life. NLT 12 And Abraham is also the spiritual father of those who have been circumcised, but only if they have the same kind of faith Abraham had before he was circumcised. MSG 12 And it means further that Abraham is father of all people who embrace what God does for them while they are still on the "outs" with God, as yet unidentified as God's, in an "uncircumcised" condition. It is precisely these people in this condition who are called "set right by God and with God"! Abraham is also, of course, father of those who have undergone the religious rite of circumcision not just because of the ritual but because they were willing to live in the risky faith-embrace of God's action for them, the way Abraham lived long before he was marked by circumcision. NLT 13 Clearly, God’s promise to give the whole earth to Abraham and his descendants was based not on his obedience to God’s law, but on a right relationship with God that comes by faith. MSG 13 That famous promise God gave Abraham - that he and his children would possess the earth - was not given because of something Abraham did or would do. It was based on God's decision to put everything together for him, which Abraham then entered when he believed. NLT 14 If God’s promise is only for those who obey the law, then faith is not necessary and the promise is pointless. MSG 14 If those who get what God gives them only get it by doing everything they are told to do and filling out all the right forms properly signed, that eliminates personal trust completely and turns the promise into an ironclad contract! That's not a holy promise; that's a business deal. NLT 15 For the law always brings punishment on those who try to obey it. (The only way to avoid breaking the law is to have no law to break!) MSG 15 A contract drawn up by a hard-nosed lawyer and with plenty of fine print only makes sure that you will never be able to collect. But if there is no contract in the first place, simply a promise - and God's promise at that - you can't break it. NLT 16 So the promise is received by faith. It is given as a free gift. And we are all certain to receive it, whether or not we live according to the law of Moses, if we have faith like Abraham’s. For Abraham is the father of all who believe. MSG 16 This is why the fulfillment of God's promise depends entirely on trusting God and his way, and then simply embracing him and what he does. God's promise arrives as pure gift. That's the only way everyone can be sure to get in on it, those who keep the religious traditions and those who have never heard of them. For Abraham is father of us all. He is not our racial father - that's reading the story backwards. He is our faith father. NLT 17 That is what the Scriptures mean when God told him, “I have made you the father of many nations.” This happened because Abraham believed in the God who brings the dead back to life and who creates new things out of nothing. MSG 17 We call Abraham "father" not because he got God's attention by living like a saint, but because God made something out of Abraham when he was a nobody. Isn't that what we've always read in Scripture, God saying to Abraham, "I set you up as father of many peoples"? Abraham was first named "father" and then became a father because he dared to trust God to do what only God could do: raise the dead to life, with a word make something out of nothing. NLT 18 Even when there was no reason for hope, Abraham kept hoping—believing that he would become the father of many nations. For God had said to him, “That’s how many descendants you will have!” MSG 18 When everything was hopeless, Abraham believed anyway, deciding to live not on the basis of what he saw he couldn't do but on what God said he would do. And so he was made father of a multitude of peoples. God himself said to him, "You're going to have a big family, Abraham!" NLT 19 And Abraham’s faith did not weaken, even though, at about 100 years of age, he figured his body was as good as dead—and so was Sarah’s womb. MSG 19 Abraham didn't focus on his own impotence and say, "It's hopeless. This hundred-year-old body could never father a child." Nor did he survey Sarah's decades of infertility and give up. NLT 20 Abraham never wavered in believing God’s promise. In fact, his faith grew stronger, and in this he brought glory to God. MSG 20 He didn't tiptoe around God's promise asking cautiously skeptical questions. He plunged into the promise and came up strong, ready for God, NLT 21 He was fully convinced that God is able to do whatever he promises. MSG 21 sure that God would make good on what he had said. NLT 22 And because of Abraham’s faith, God counted him as righteous. MSG 22 That's why it is said, "Abraham was declared fit before God by trusting God to set him right." NLT 23 And when God counted him as righteous, it wasn’t just for Abraham’s benefit. It was recorded MSG 23 But it's not just Abraham; NLT 24 for our benefit, too, assuring us that God will also count us as righteous if we believe in him, the one who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead. MSG 24 it's also us! The same thing gets said about us when we embrace and believe the One who brought Jesus to life when the conditions were equally hopeless. NLT 25 He was handed over to die because of our sins, and he was raised to life to make us right with God. MSG 25 The sacrificed Jesus made us fit for God, set us right with God.

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