Romans 4 - Steve Wiggins Daily Devotional
“Now to the one who works, pay is not considered as a gift, but as something owed. But to the one who does not work, but believes on Him who declares righteous the ungodly, his faith is credited for righteousness.” Romans 4:4-5
Let’s say you’re in a little debt and you need to make some extra money to pay it off. You decide to get an extra job, digging ditches. (Someone’s gotta do it.) So you’re in the hot sun every weekend, just digging away. On payday, the foreman strolls by, hands you an envelope and says, “Here’s a gift.”
“WAIT A MINUTE!”, you reply. “I’ve been working hard for two weeks. That money is not a gift; I’ve earned it!”
If you have a debt that you can pay-off, you should work hard and pay it. When your work is finished, you have earned your wages; when your debt is paid, you paid it.
Have you ever felt cheated by G_d? Ever think He misappropriated your “good works” and renamed your righteousness as His “gift” of salvation? Perhaps, you should demand and accounting of all your good works, and put G_d’s character on trial. That’s what Job did. But how did that work out for Job…?
The Bible gives us our accounting: “There is no one righteous, not even one.” Romans 3:10
Now, suppose you’re in so much debt, you couldn’t possibly pay it off. Your grandkids will still be paying your debt, long after you’re dead! One day, the person you owe tells you he wants to cancel your debt. All you have to do is have faith he’ll do it. You tell him you believe him and you want to accept his offer, so he cancels your debt.
Later, you overhear that person needs some ditches dug around his property. In response to what he’s done for you, canceling a debt you could not afford, you commit your life to working for him. You do not work out of any obligation. There is no debt, anymore. Rather, you work voluntarily, out of thankfulness.
People, who don’t realize the enormity of their sin debt, believe they can pay that debt. They think much of themselves and less of G_d. True believers in Yeshua see their debt to G_d as un-payable. Their “good works” (as believers) are out of gratitude for His having canceled their debt.
“For the wages of sin is death, the free gift of G_d is eternal life in Messiah Yeshua our L_rd.” Romans 6:23
~Steve Wiggins, Associate Leader, Worship Leader
Daily Devotional, Sunday, August 18, 2013