Abram said, “Lord Yahweh, what will you give me, since I go childless, and he who will inherit my estate is Eliezer of Damascus?” Abram said, “Behold, to me you have given no seed: and, behold, one born in my house is my heir.”
Behold, the word of Yahweh came to him, saying, “This man will not be your heir, but he who will come out of your own body will be your heir.” Yahweh brought him outside, and said, “Look now toward the sky, and count the stars, if you are able to count them.” He said to Abram, “So shall your seed be.” He believed in Yahweh; and he reckoned it to him for righteousness. He said to him, “I am Yahweh who brought you out of Ur of the Chaldees, to give you this land to inherit it.”
Here, we find Abram trying to figure out what God is doing in his life. He realized that God had told him he was to have many children, but God had not given Abram a single child.
Other people had lots of kids, but Abram, the one promised to have lots of kids by God, had none! So, Abram asked God if his intent was to have his top servant be the one who inherits his estate and has the children that God was talking about.
But, God said ,”no” and that actually Abram was to have his own child and through his own child he would have countless offspring, and then God says something astounding. He tells us that Abram believed what God said and just because Abram believed, he was given righteousness. This is a very important statement to Christians. It’s on this basis that we are saved. Listen to what Paul says in Romans:
Romans 4:1-5 :
What then will we say that Abraham, our forefather, has found according to the flesh? For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not toward God. For what does the Scripture say? “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.” Now to him who works, the reward is not counted as grace, but as something owed. But to him who doesn’t work, but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is accounted for righteousness.
Paul defines “Grace” as getting righteousness without working for it. In other words, Abram didn’t deserve righteousness because he didn’t actually work for it. God just gave righteousness to him because he believed what God said. Faith didn’t earn Abram righteousness because righteousness can only be earned by doing what is right! Abram didn’t do what is right to earn righteousness, he just believed that God would do what He said He would do.
Salvation for a Christian is based on grace. You can’t earn it and if you try you will not be saved. Christian salvation is only by grace, and this grace is given by believing that Jesus died for our sins to save us. So many church members and pastors have this wrong and it is a horrible thing because a failure to understand keeps them from being saved. Yes, you heard that right. There are churches members and pastors that are not saved because they believe a perverted Gospel. It is important that each one of us test ourselves to make sure that we are in the faith.