Main point summary
Through Abraham, Israel was given the example of faith, who, by faith, inherited his justification and redemption from God apart from obedience to the law and circumcision. Furthermore, Abraham's example is the standard for the whole world: as God is the God and giver of all, He shall give an inheritance to all those who follow in Abraham's footsteps.
What then shall we say was gained by 1 Abraham,
What did we inherit from Abraham
t our forefather according to the flesh?
IN OTHER WORDS, the one to whom the promise was made and through whom Israel descended?
For if Abraham was justified by works,
ANSWER: IF Abraham could satisfy the law,
he has something to boast about,
THEN he would be able to justify himself
but u not before God.
BUT NOT because God had done anything
For what does the Scripture say?
IN CONTRAST, what does scripture say about Abraham?
v “Abraham believed God,
ANSWER: it says Abraham had faith in God
and it was counted to him as righteousness.”
AS A RESULT, Abraham was justified by God
Now w to the one who works,
TO EXPLAIN, the one who does things
his wages are not counted as a gift
RESULTS in being paid not out of grace
but as his due.
BUT because he deserves to get paid.
And to the one who does not work
CONVERSELY, to the one who doesn't earn his righteousness
but x believes in 1 him who justifies the ungodly,
BUT lives by faith in God through Christ
his faith is counted as righteousness,
RESULTS IN being found righteous as a gift (of grace)
just as David also speaks of the blessing of the one to whom God counts righteousness
AS EXPLAINED by David who talks about the blessed man who is given righteousness by God as a gift
apart from works:
NOT by earning God's blessing,
y “Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven,
"You have received much if your sins are forgiven
and whose sins are covered;
IN OTHER WORDS, if your sins are washed over
blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not z count his sin.”
BECAUSE a forgiven, blessed man is not credited his sin by God"
Is this blessing then only for a the circumcised,
FURTHERMORE, QUESTION: is this blessing only for Israel?
or also for the uncircumcised?
BUT NOT for the Gentile (uncircumcised) too?
b For we say that faith was counted to Abraham as righteousness.
ANSWER: No BECAUSE, faith was Abraham's credit to righteousness
How then was it counted to him?
EXPLANATION BY QUESTION AND ANSWER: what do you mean by credit?
Was it before or after he had been circumcised?
IN OTHER WORDS, was he credited prior to or as a result of circumcision?
It was not after,
ANSWER: NOT after
but before he was circumcised.
BUT before circumcision
c He received the sign of circumcision as a seal of the righteousness that he had by faith
IN OTHER WORDS, he was circumcised to demarcate something that was already there, namely, righteousness by faith
while he was still uncircumcised.
EVEN THOUGH he was not yet circumcised
The purpose was d to make him the father of all who believe
IN ORDER TO make him the first of those who are made righteous by faith
without being circumcised,
DESPITE not being circumcised
so that righteousness would be counted to them as well,
IN ORDER THAT through him, those with faith and who are uncircumcised would also be found righteous
and to make him the father of the circumcised
AND IN ORDER THAT those who are circumcised would be his sons and daughters too
who are not merely circumcised
HOWEVER, NOT ONLY because they are circumcised
but who also walk in the footsteps of the faith that our father Abraham had
BUT also walk by faith just like Abraham did
before he was circumcised.
BEFORE being circumcised
Verses 1-8: Abraham received blessing - and Israel has received blessing through Abraham - but the blessing is found in the example of his faith, not through his works of the law or conformity to the law. What did we inherit from Abraham (asks Israel)? We inherited Abraham's example of faith, which we are to emulate.
Verses 9-12: Did only Israel inherit this example of faith, or the rest of the world too? Yes, the rest of the world, because faith is something borne of God (not works by men), and God is the God of all.