The Just Shall Live By Faith

For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, “The righteous shall live by faith.”  Romans 1:17 ESV

In this time of confusion, calamity, conspiracy theories, racial injustice and the like, it is important that the Church live by faith in Christ alone. The phrase the just shall live by faith is originally found in Habakkuk 2:4. It is also found in Romans 1:17, Galatians 3:11, and Hebrews 10:38. It is obvious that believers are called to live by faith in God.

In Habakkuk’s day the law had become paralyzed, and there was not justice in the courts. The wicked far outnumbered the righteous, so that justice became perverted. Habakkuk begins with a plaintive cry of “how long?” and proceeds with a litany of the world’s ill and the seeming victory of evil over good during the corrupt reign of Jehoiakim. Habakkuk’s complaint in Habakkuk 1:2-4: “O Lord, how long shall I cry for help, and you will not hear? Or cry to you “Violence!” and you will not save? Why do you make me see iniquity, and why do you idly look at wrong? Destruction and violence are before me; strife and contention arise. So the law is paralyzed, and justice never goes forth. For the wicked surround the righteous; so justice goes forth perverted.”

The Lord responded with this answer, “Look among the nations, and see; wonder and be astounded.
For I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if told (Habakkuk 1:5). Habakkuk later complained a second time. This time the Lord answered by saying, “Write the vision; make it plain on tablets, so he may run who reads it. For still the vision awaits its appointed time; it hastens to the end—it will not lie. If it seems slow, wait for it; it will surely come; it will not delay. “Behold, his soul is puffed up; it is not upright within him, but the righteous shall live by his faith (Habakkuk 2:2-4).

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