Faith Comes by Hearing

faith comes by hearing

The tenth chapter of Romans is a tremendous section from the Word of God. Paul provides a perspective on salvation and instructions for receiving salvation.

10 Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved.

Notice that this verse is addressed to Israel. Paul always went to the synagogues first because he believed in this verse.

For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge.

The Jews were zealous of God according to man’s thoughts and ways. This may be talking about the 600+ fence laws that were instituted by the religious leaders to keep people far away from breaking the law.

For they being ignorant of God’s righteousness, and going about to establish their own righteousness, have not submitted themselves unto the righteousness of God.

These Jews were endeavoring to earn their righteousness by their works instead of by God’s grace through Jesus Christ.

For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.

Since Christ fulfilled the law then the Mosaic Law ended on the day of Pentecost for all those that believe.

For Moses describeth the righteousness which is of the law, That the man which doeth those things shall live by them.

There are rewards and consequences for the Law. In Deuteronomy 28

28 “Now it shall come to pass, if you diligently obey the voice of the Lord your God, to observe carefully all His commandments which I command you today, that the Lord your God will set you high above all nations of the earth. And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you because you obey the voice of the Lord your God:

Verses 3-13 proceed to list the blessings received for obeying ALL His commandments. The requirement for receiving the blessings is to fulfill 100% of the law. If you missed one then you fell short and received the cursings.

In verse 15, God declares the consequences of not obeying ALL of the law

15 “But it shall come to pass, if you do not obey the voice of the Lord your God, to observe carefully all His commandments and His statutes which I command you today, that all these curses will come upon you and overtake you:

In verses 16-68, God elaborates on the cursings resulting from not obeying ALL of the law. God spent 11 verses detailing the blessings for obeying ALL of the law and 53 verses detailing the cursings for NOT obeying ALL of the law. Why would God spend approximately five times more verses to explain the cursings?

But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise, Say not in thine heart, Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:)

Christ is seated at the right hand of God in heaven (Colossians 3:1).

Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.)

God raised Christ from the dead three days and three nights after his burial.

But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;

The following two verses are the minimal requirements for salvation; confess Jesus as Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Jesus from the dead.

That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

This highlights our need to stop being Lord over our lives and confess Jesus as the new Lord in our life. Then we confess that God raised Jesus from the dead because otherwise the Lord of our life is dead.

11 For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

There is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1).

12 For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon him.

13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Christ died for both the Jews and the Gentiles, extending his riches to all that believe.

14 How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?

15 And how shall they preach, except they are sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace and bring glad tidings of good things!

There is a progression in these two verses.

  1. Send – Our responsibility
  2. Go – Our responsibility
  3. Preach – Our responsibility
  4. Hear – Their responsibility (fulcrum)
  5. Believe – Their responsibility
  6. Call on him [Jesus] – Their responsibility
  7. Salvation – God’s responsibility

They are presented in reverse order, but the progress is forward. Our responsibility is to Send, Go, and Preach. Their responsibility is to Hear, Believe, and Call on Jesus. God’s responsibility is Save those that believe.

16 But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report?

17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

Faith (believing) comes by hearing the Word of God. Hearing the Word of God is the fulcrum of faith. It’s the hearer’s responsibility to tenderize their heart for receiving the Word of God.

Paul the Apostle expresses God’s desire for both Jews and Gentiles to be saved, the inadequacy of the Mosaic Law producing  righteousness, ,the details of how to be saved, then the steps for sharing salvation with our friends, relatives, acquaintances, and neighbors. Share how God has changed your life and the Good News that Christ wants to change their life.

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