Nuggets – The Just Shall Live by Faith

The Just Shall Live by Faith “Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him: but the just shall live by his faith.” (Habakkuk 2:4)

This great principle—“the just shall live by faith”—was the Scripture that so inflamed the soul of Martin Luther that it became the watchword of the Reformation. It occurs first here in the small prophecy of Habakkuk, but is then quoted three times in the New Testament. The term “just,” of course, means “justified” or “righteous.” God says a person is enabled to live righteously by his faith.

The nature of this faith is clarified by three quotations. The first is Romans 1:17: “For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.” The phrase “from faith to faith” means “from the beginning of faith to the end of faith,” and the context indicates that the foundational item of faith is faith in “his eternal power and Godhead,” which “from the creation of the world are clearly seen” (Romans 1:20).

Similarly, in the last occurrence: “Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him” (Hebrews 10:38). Then the writer notes that the basic item of faith is special creation: “Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear” (Hebrews 11:3).

The middle occurrence is Galatians 3:11: “But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.” Paul’s lengthy explanation to the Galatian legalists begins with Galatians 2:16: “Even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ.” Thus, justifying, saving, living faith begins and centers in Jesus Christ, first as Creator of all things, then as the Savior who “hath redeemed us from the curse of the law” (Galatians 3:13). HMM

Institute of Creation Research

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5 Responses to Nuggets – The Just Shall Live by Faith

  1. People Empowerment Project says:

    Three key terms of equal value stand out from the verse featured here.

    Just – When viewed from the perspective of the Savior, this must include mercy dovetailed completely in harmony with justice, and we know that fallen humanity is not up to this literal miracle.

    Live – How often we see that most of the people in our lives merely exist, even when their passions and motives are full of temporal energy. How much more are we called to be the salt and light that bring about a life sharing eternal energy with those in need of it, or perhaps I should say, in need of Him?

    Faith – I, for one, am prone to reduce this powerful term to a strong belief, as if it is merely a conviction, at best, or an irrefutable opinion, at worst. By doing this, I may even join those who counter true faith with such statements as, “It doesn’t really matter WHAT you believe in, as long as you believe in SOMETHING.” How sad this appraisal is. How damaging a testimony. When our faith is based on such presuppositions as these, from hence come tee shirts and bumper stickers like, “Christians aren’t perfect, just forgiven.” As true as that statement may be, it singularly weakens the foundation of our call to be holy, as our Father is holy. I digress. The Gospel wasn’t supposed to be a tee shirt or bumper sticker thing anyway. But the just who live by faith know this, don’t they?

  2. Field Lily says:

    Amen

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