Worship sermon

Tokyo Kalbarri Church Sermon Rev. Ryo Kasama, May 9, 2021
"Descendants of Faith" Roman Epistle to the Romans 4: 13-25

I have been studying Chapter 4 of the Roman Epistle to the Romans since last week, and this is about Abraham. Abraham was a person who appeared in Genesis chapter 12, and he was chosen by God and walked according to God for half a century after being chosen. He had a lot of trouble because he walked with God, but at the same time he was given a lot of grace and was able to leave a lot of grace to his offspring.
Abraham left more than just property to his offspring. The greatest thing Abraham has left to his offspring is the qualification to live as God's people. Abraham was blessed by God, but not only that, but his descendants are also in the blessing. It is written in Genesis 17: 7. "I will make a covenant with you and with the offspring that follow, to make it an eternal covenant, and to be the god of you and your offspring." His genes then became large. It will continue to develop. The first thing that is easy to understand is Judaism. To be precise, they are Israelis, but they inherit the genes of Abraham's blood. In fact, it's not just the Israelites. Abraham had two sons, his second son Isaac became an Israeli ancestor, but his eldest son Ishmael is said to have become an Arab ancestor. Muhammad, the founder of Islam, Mahomet says he is a descendant of the Ishmael. So, in fact, Islam is also a religion with the Abraham gene.
The three major religions in the world, Judaism, Christianity and Islam, are all teachings that worship the same god, and their origin is in Abraham.
All believers in these three religions are said to be descendants of Abraham, but only Judaism values ​​the descendants of Abraham's blood, and Islam and Christianity value the descendants in the genetic sense. I'm not looking. Christianity and Islam are worshipers of various ethnic groups around the world, but they are all descendants of Abraham, including us.
The reason why Christianity and Islam, which do not inherit blood, are claimed to be descendants of Abraham is that they can be said to be descendants of Abraham if they have the will to believe. Abraham is like a sample of faith, and living like Abraham means living as a believer. He is said to be an ancestor as an example. In today's passage 16 of the Bible, "Therefore, by faith you will be the heir to the world. By grace, all descendants of Abraham, not just those who rely on the law, but those who obey his faith. He is sure to be part of the promise. He is the father of all of us. "But it is clearly stated that anyone who believes in God and aims for Abraham is called a descendant of Abraham.
The qualification to be a descendant of Abraham is to model Abraham. However, the question is what to model.
Abraham is an existence that obeyed God, but God's message was given at the turning point of life, and faith was recognized by following it. It is difficult to know how to use such Abraham as a model. In the case of Judaism, I thought of it as keeping the law that God once gave to Israel. But Christianity thinks it is quite different. The important thing is not to think about what Abraham did, but to value Abraham's faith.
It is also written in today's Bible passage. In the first thirteenth verse, "God promised Abraham and his descendants to inherit the world, but that promise was not based on the law, but on the righteousness of faith." An important word came out. The word "righteousness by faith". The word "righteousness" means "correct." What is right means that it is right in the relationship between God and humans. It's a problem between God and the believers, not in this world. This word is often mentioned in letters to Romans, so it will be a word that you will often hear from now on.
Then, what kind of faith Abraham is is written in verse 18. "When he had no hope, he still hoped and believed, and he became the father of many people, as he was told," Your offspring will be like this. " It was. Abraham's faith is a faith that never shakes. It is not that we see or do not see God only when it is convenient, but that we continue to believe in God at all times.
That belief is expressed in Genesis by saying that Abraham was 100 years old and his wife Sarah was 90 years old. The age of 100 is amazing, but since God first promised Abraham when he was 75, it took 25 years to keep his promise. During that time, Abraham continued to believe in God. Meanwhile, he continued to believe in God without shaking. That heart that he believed in was recognized by God. As long as God promised him, he would continue to be confident that it would not be betrayed. It is said that what proves Abraham's faith is not what he did for God, but that he believed in God's promises and continued to believe in God.
Believing in God means believing that what God has promised will always come true. Abraham's promise with God was to prosper his offspring. The fact that he was actually given a son because he believed it would come true for decades, and that Abraham's descendants are still here in this era.
The promise was newly given to us by Jesus. It is written in verse 24. "It is also written for us. If we believe in the one who resurrected our Lord Jesus from the dead, we will be justified." It is by believing in Jesus. It is a promise that we can go to God.
The important thing in our faith is to believe it. In other words, life is given to me. Believing in Jesus means believing that good things will be given to me. It is our faith to believe in what is given to the future, what is given now.
We may not have the strong faith to believe in God as clearly as Abraham. But Jesus is always with me and empowers us, so we can continue to have faith.
This page is translated from Japanese by google translation.


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