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So the promise is received by faith. It is given as a free gift. And we are all certain to receive it, whether or not we live according to the law of Moses, if we have faith like Abraham's. For Abraham is the father of all who believe.
Romans 4:16 NLT

Does this passage in particular mean that Jews and others belonging to Abrahamic faiths will be saved?

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  • Paul's whole revelation is enclosed in more than this one verse, so you should include his whole revelation when looking for this answer. Nutshell version, The purpose of the OT and the Israelites was to prepare a way for Jesus, He is the true Seed of Abraham Paul wrote, and Paul also wrote we become the true Seed as well, when we come to Christ and believe on Him receiving our new creation spiritual births. All are welcome into this to become the 'seed of Abraham through becoming joint-heirs with Christ.', including Arabs and Jews. – Hello Dec 5 '14 at 0:04
  • @Zenon- the Kingdom of God is on the earth now dating back to when Jesus was, so said He. – Hello Dec 5 '14 at 0:08
  • @Hello I can't exactly copy and paste Paul's entire epistle to the Romans here. – Zenon Dec 5 '14 at 2:22
  • @Zenon-not the whole epistle, but Paul's understanding of Abraham and his seed, which is not the usual Jewish understanding, Paul meant Jesus by 'Abraham's seed', not the Jewish nation. – Hello Dec 5 '14 at 4:07
  • @Hello That would require me to copy-paste several chapters from various epistles, which I really don't think would be welcome here. – Zenon Dec 5 '14 at 4:38
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Most certainly not.

And we are all certain to receive it, whether or not we live according to the law of Moses, if we have faith like Abraham's.

It hinges on the conditional at the end of the sentence, ...if we have faith like Abraham's.

Abraham didn't just 'have a faith', he had faith ('trust') in what God said. Faith has an object, and from the rest of Paul's development, it is specifically faith in Christ alone.

The issue is who you have faith in. Also, 'faith' here does not mean being a member ofa religion or a group, but specifically, trusting a specific deity, namely Jesus.

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  • Thanks! So this is the kind of question that belongs on this site, right? – Zenon Dec 5 '14 at 2:24
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In Romans 4:1-3, Paul says Abraham was credited as righteous because of his faith, not his works. In 4:14, he says that if those who adhere to the law are the heirs, as Jews believed, then faith is null and the promise God made to Abraham is void, then in 4:15 that without the law we can not transgress against it. He goes on to say that it is by faith that they will be saved, not by adherence to the law.

So this means that those of faith will be saved, but in this passage Paul is not clear whether those who do not believe in Jesus - Jews and (later) Muslims - will be saved. Paul is not so much discussing the ultimate fate of the Jews, but giving reasons for Christians not to follow Jewish law. In doing so, he merely says that the Jews will not be favoured if they follow the law.

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  • By the way, Muslims do believe in Jesus and recognise him as the Messiah. – fdb Dec 4 '14 at 23:29
  • @Dick Harfield - there is at least one, if not more scripture texts that are about those who do not know or cannot see Christ, that there is a possibility for them, through being judged on what they do know. Not sure where this is, but generally to be sure, we do KNOW from many scripture texts that coming through Faith in Christ is sure, whereas the other is a scant verse, if 2. Better to go the sure way. – Hello Dec 5 '14 at 0:20
  • @fdb Thank you for your input. Yes I am aware of the Muslim position, having done some in-depth study of the faith. I was unsure how to handle this, but I decided that what was important in a discussion of Paul is that they do not believe in Jesus in the way that Paul would have wanted. – Dick Harfield Dec 5 '14 at 3:48
  • @Hello Yes, there are so many references we could make to salvation though faith and works, etc. However, since this was an exercise in hermeneutics, I restricted myself to the passage in question. – Dick Harfield Dec 5 '14 at 3:49
  • @DickHarfield: I referred to the 1 text that 'might' apply to muslims. – Hello Dec 5 '14 at 5:19

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