Did Jews In Paul's Day Understand The Significance Of Abraham
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How did Jews in Paul's day understand the significance of Abraham?
To the Jews, Abraham was their father. They took great pride in looking upon themselves as the sons of Abraham. Paul needed to correct some of their views concerning Abraham. The entire fourth chapter of Romans is devoted to Abraham. In chapter 4 Paul does far more than show the Jews to be mistaken concerning the righteousness of Abraham; Paul shows that Abraham was justified by faith apart from works, and that he is the “father” of all who believe, Jew or Gentile. Abraham’s righteousness is precisely the same righteousness which God has made available to me today, and on the same basis. (Bible.org)
What is significant about the sequence of Abraham's faith and covenant sign?…show more content… This was so that he could be the father of all who believe even when uncircumcised, so that the status of covenant membership can be calculated to their account as well. “Abraham believed God and it was accounted to him for righteousness.” (Wright p68)
What was that sign?
The act of circumcision was required as a sign of the covenant. It carried with it a twofold message: the cutting away of the foreskin spoke of the cutting the fleshly dependence, and their hope for the future posterity and prosperity was not to rest upon their own ability. (Kingdom Dynamics p27)
What did Paul mean when he referred to a "true Jew?"
For you are not a true Jew just because you were born of Jewish parents or because you have gone through the Jewish ceremony of circumcision. No, a true Jew is one whose heart is right with God. And true circumcision is not a cutting of the body but a change of heart produced by God’s Spirit. Whoever has that kind of change seeks praise from God, mot from people. (Romans