Pristine Grace

What Was Imputed to Abraham
by Mark Pannell
What Was Imputed to Abraham

     (Gen 15: 6), “And he believed in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness.”   (Rom 4: 3), “For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God, and it was counted unto him for righteousness.”  SPECIFICALLY, what WAS “counted” to Abraham?   I.e. What is the IT?   According to the fourth chapter of Romans, SOMETHING was counted (or reckoned, or imputed) to Abraham.   But, what?     

     Whatever IT was, it was not something Abraham did.  It was not ANYTHING found IN Abraham, (not even his inward grace of faith). I.e. God justified Abraham (declared him Righteous) based on what He “counted” (imputed) to him.  And, Abraham was NOT Justified by HIS “works”.  Rom 4: 2, “For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God.”

     Whatever IT was, IT was imputed to Abraham BEFORE he was circumcised.  Rom 4: 10, “How was it then reckoned? when he was in circumcision, or in uncircumcision? Not in circumcision, but in uncircumcision.”

     Whatever IT was, IT is imputed to others also.  Rom 4: 23-24, “Now it was not written for his sake alone, that it was imputed to him;  24  But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead;” I.e. Whoever (in any generation) believes on the same God and Lord that Abraham believed in, God has “counted” to THEM (exactly) what He “counted” to Abraham.

     And, considering the reverse of the foregoing statement, whatever IT is that is “imputed” to “us also” (and by which a Just God and Savior declares “US” Righteous), THAT is what was “counted” to Abraham (and by which God declared HIM Righteous).  

     I.e. God has imputed His Righteousness to those who believe in a Just God and Savior in ANY generation, (whether Abraham BEFORE the Cross or Paul, the Apostle, AFTER the Cross). They are Justified before God based on the Righteousness Christ “brought in” by His obedience unto death.  They are (forever) declared Righteous by God because God has “counted” (reckoned/imputed) to them the Righteousness Christ worked out at the Cross. 

     David, the Psalmist, declared those sinners “blessed” (and tells us SPECIFICALLY what God “counted” to Abraham).  Rom 4: 6, “Even as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God imputeth righteousness without works..”

     So, WHAT was imputed to Abraham?  The ONE Righteousness God (Himself) provided and has ALWAYS owned as His (“God’s Righteousness”); the ONE Righteousness Christ “brought in” by His obedience unto death; the ONE Righteousness by which God Justifies (declares Righteous), otherwise, ungodly sinners in every generation.