“Abram believed the LORD, and he credited it to him as righteousness.” (Genesis 15.6)
“Genesis 15.6 became a foundational verse in the theology of the early church, especially in Paul’s writings… James uses it too, but for a different reason: to point out that Abraham’s righteousness, which came by faith alone, also resulted in works of faith (James 2.23). This kind of faith—the faith that justifies us but also produces righteousness in us—is the kind that, according to James, makes someone a friend of God.
“The assurance of the old promise comes after the announcement… ‘I am your shield, your very great reward’ (15.1)… the literal implication here is that God is the reward. It’s a personal commitment; God isn’t just giving Abram a son, many descendants, and land. He’s giving Abram himself. Abram’s focus at this point is clearly on the gifts rather than the Giver… Over time, Abram will learn that knowing God as a great Reward is better than experiencing him as a great Rewarder.” (A Walk Thru the Life of Abraham: Faith in God’s Promises, Baker Books)
Let’s pray: Lord, sometimes I get obsessed with the things that I want, things that I want to see happen in my life. May those things never get in the way of me becoming a friend of God. More than any reward, I desire you, the Great Rewarder…
Let’s worship and remain in the presence of our Great Rewarder. Let’s sing “To the One” (Upperroom) –