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Chapter 4

Romans 4 Commentary

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Romans 4:1-3 meaning

The competing Jewish “authorities” are arguing that we must do our part in order to be justified before God; Paul answers that we are justified in God’s sight solely by faith. Paul is now going to use Abraham as more proof that justification comes through faith and not through anything we

Romans 4:4-5 meaning

No one can do sufficient good works so that God owes them. Everyone is sinful and cannot cause themselves to be in righteous standing before God. However, if we believe God, our faith is credited to us as righteousness, making us just before God.

Romans 4:6-8 meaning

It is God’s blessing to us that He considers believers righteous before Him without considering their sins. By faith in God, our sin is covered and no longer prevents us from being in God’s family.

Romans 4:9-11 meaning

The blessing of having our sins forgiven is available to all people, whether circumcised or uncircumcised. Being circumcised or doing any good works does not make us righteous before God. Paul is making the point that Abraham was counted as righteous before being circumcised, showing that circumcision has nothing to do with his standing before God.

Romans 4:12 meaning

Paul is emphasizing that Abraham is the father of all who believe, whether circumcised or uncircumcised.

Romans 4:13-15 meaning

The law is abolished through Christ, so if the promise was made through the law, then God would have broken His promise to Abraham. The promise God made to Abraham was apart from the law: it was through faith.

Romans 4:16-17 meaning

No one can live up to God’s standard; we are saved by grace through faith. Every person, in every nation who believes is made a part of Abraham’s family and therefore a part of Abraham’s inheritance—because Abraham is the father of all who believe.

Romans 4:18-21 meaning

By all human standards, it was impossible for Abraham and Sarah to have a child, but Abraham believed God’s promise anyway. Even though Abraham did not understand how, he was convinced that God would accomplish what He promised.

Romans 4:22 meaning

When Abraham believed God, he was counted as righteous in God’s sight. It is the same with us; when we believe God we are counted as righteous in God’s sight.

Romans 4:23-25 meaning

Abraham was credited as righteous in God’s sight because of his faith. If we have faith that Christ died for our sins and was raised from the dead, we also will be counted as righteous.