The Example of Abraham
4 1 What shall we say then that Abraham our father according to flesh has found? 2 For if Abraham has been justified on the principle of works, he has whereof to boast: but not before God; 3 for what does the scripture say? And Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness. 4 Now to him that works the reward is not reckoned as of grace, but of debt: 5 but to him who does not work, but believes on him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is reckoned as righteousness. 6 Even as David also declares the blessedness of the man to whom God reckons righteousness without works: 7 Blessed [they] whose lawlessnesses have been forgiven, and whose sins have been covered: 8 blessed [the] man to whom [the] Lord shall not at all reckon sin.
9 [Does] this blessedness then [rest] on the circumcision, or also on the uncircumcision? For we say that faith has been reckoned to Abraham as righteousness. 10 How then has it been reckoned? when he was in circumcision, or in uncircumcision? Not in circumcision, but in uncircumcision. 11 And he received [the] sign of circumcision [as] seal of the righteousness of faith which [he had] being in uncircumcision, that he might be [the] father of all them that believe being in uncircumcision, that righteousness might be reckoned to them also; 12 and father of circumcision, not only to those who are of [the] circumcision, but to those also who walk in the steps of the faith, during uncircumcision, of our father Abraham.
The Promise Realized through Faith
13 For [it was] not by law that the promise was to Abraham, or to his seed, that he should be heir of [the] world, but by righteousness of faith. 14 For if they which [are] of law be heirs, faith is made vain, and the promise made of no effect. 15 For law works wrath; but where no law is neither [is there] transgression. 16 Therefore [it is] on the principle of faith, that [it might be] according to grace, in order to the promise being sure to all the seed, not to that only which [is] of the law, but to that also which [is] of Abraham's faith, who is father of us all,
17 (according as it is written, I have made thee father of many nations,) before the God whom he believed, who quickens the dead, and calls the things which be not as being; 18 who against hope believed in hope to his becoming father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be: 19 and not being weak in faith, he considered not his own body already become dead, being about a hundred years old, and the deadening of Sarah's womb, 20 and hesitated not at the promise of God through unbelief; but found strength in faith, giving glory to God; 21 and being fully persuaded that what he has promised he is able also to do; 22 wherefore also it was reckoned to him as righteousness.
23 Now it was not written on his account alone that it was reckoned to him, 24 but on ours also, to whom, believing on him who has raised from among [the] dead Jesus our Lord, 25 who has been delivered for our offences and has been raised for our justification, it will be reckoned.
Results of Justification
5 1 Therefore having been justified on the principle of faith, we have peace towards God through our Lord Jesus Christ; 2 by whom we have also access by faith into this favour in which we stand, and we boast in hope of the glory of God. 3 And not only [that], but we also boast in tribulations, knowing that tribulation works endurance; 4 and endurance, experience; and experience, hope; 5 and hope does not make ashamed, because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by [the] Holy Spirit which has been given to us:
6 for we being still without strength, in [the] due time Christ has died for [the] ungodly. 7 For scarcely for [the] just [man] will one die, for perhaps for [the] good [man] some one might also dare to die; 8 but God commends his love to us, in that, we being still sinners, Christ has died for us. 9 Much rather therefore, having been now justified in [the power of] his blood, we shall be saved by him from wrath. 10 For if, being enemies, we have been reconciled to God through the death of his Son, much rather, having been reconciled, we shall be saved in [the power of] his life. 11 And not only [that], but [we are] making our boast in God, through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom now we have received the reconciliation.
Adam and Christ
12 For this [cause], even as by one man sin entered into the world, and by sin death; and thus death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned: 13 (for until law sin was in [the] world; but sin is not put to account when there is no law; 14 but death reigned from Adam until Moses, even upon those who had not sinned in the likeness of Adam's transgression, who is [the] figure of him to come. 15 But [shall] not the act of favour [be] as the offence? For if by the offence of one the many have died, much rather has the grace of God, and the free gift in grace, which [is] by the one man Jesus Christ, abounded unto the many. 16 And [shall] not as by one that has sinned [be] the gift? For the judgment [was] of one to condemnation, but the act of favour, of many offences unto justification. 17 For if by the offence of the one death reigned by the one, much rather shall those who receive the abundance of grace, and of the free gift of righteousness, reign in life by the one Jesus Christ:) 18 so then as [it was] by one offence towards all men to condemnation, so by one righteousness towards all men for justification of life. 19 For as indeed by the disobedience of the one man the many have been constituted sinners, so also by the obedience of the one the many will be constituted righteous. 20 But law came in, in order that the offence might abound; but where sin abounded grace has overabounded, 21 in order that, even as sin has reigned in [the power of] death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Dead to Sin but Alive in Christ
6 1 What then shall we say? Should we continue in sin that grace may abound? 2 Far be the thought. We who have died to sin, how shall we still live in it? 3 Are you ignorant that we, as many as have been baptised unto Christ Jesus, have been baptised unto his death? 4 We have been buried therefore with him by baptism unto death, in order that, even as Christ has been raised up from among [the] dead by the glory of the Father, so we also should walk in newness of life. 5 For if we are become identified with [him] in the likeness of his death, so also we shall be of [his] resurrection; 6 knowing this, that our old man has been crucified with [him], that the body of sin might be annulled, that we should no longer serve sin. 7 For he that has died is justified from sin. 8 Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with him, 9 knowing that Christ having been raised up from among [the] dead dies no more: death has dominion over him no more. 10 For in that he has died, he has died to sin once for all; but in that he lives, he lives to God. 11 So also ye, reckon yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus. 12 Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body to obey its lusts. 13 Neither yield your members instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but yield yourselves to God as alive from among [the] dead, and your members instruments of righteousness to God. 14 For sin shall not have dominion over you, for ye are not under law but under grace.
Servants of Righteousness
15 What then? should we sin because we are not under law but under grace? Far be the thought. 16 Know ye not that to whom ye yield yourselves bondmen for obedience, ye are bondmen to him whom ye obey, whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness? 17 But thanks [be] to God, that ye were bondmen of sin, but have obeyed from the heart the form of teaching into which ye were instructed. 18 Now, having got your freedom from sin, ye have become bondmen to righteousness. 19 I speak humanly on account of the weakness of your flesh. For even as ye have yielded your members in bondage to uncleanness and to lawlessness unto lawlessness, so now yield your members in bondage to righteousness unto holiness. 20 For when ye were bondmen of sin ye were free from righteousness. 21 What fruit therefore had ye then in the things of which ye are now ashamed? for the end of them [is] death. 22 But now, having got your freedom from sin, and having become bondmen to God, ye have your fruit unto holiness, and the end eternal life. 23 For the wages of sin [is] death; but the act of favour of God, eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
An Analogy from Marriage
7 1 Are ye ignorant, brethren, (for I speak to those knowing law,) that law rules over a man as long as he lives? 2 For the married woman is bound by law to her husband so long as he is alive; but if the husband should die, she is clear from the law of the husband: 3 so then, the husband being alive, she shall be called an adulteress if she be to another man; but if the husband should die, she is free from the law, so as not to be an adulteress, though she be to another man. 4 So that, my brethren, ye also have been made dead to the law by the body of the Christ, to be to another, who has been raised up from among [the] dead, in order that we might bear fruit to God. 5 For when we were in the flesh the passions of sins, which [were] by the law, wrought in our members to bring forth fruit to death; 6 but now we are clear from the law, having died in that in which we were held, so that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in oldness of letter.
The Problem of Indwelling Sin
7 What shall we say then? [is] the law sin? Far be the thought. But I had not known sin, unless by law: for I had not had conscience also of lust unless the law had said, Thou shalt not lust; 8 but sin, getting a point of attack by the commandment, wrought in me every lust; for without law sin [was] dead. 9 But I was alive without law once; but the commandment having come, sin revived, but I died. 10 And the commandment, which [was] for life, was found, [as] to me, itself [to be] unto death: 11 for sin, getting a point of attack by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew [me]. 12 So that the law indeed [is] holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good. 13 Did then that which is good become death to me? Far be the thought. But sin, that it might appear sin, working death to me by that which is good; in order that sin by the commandment might become exceeding sinful.
14 For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am fleshly, sold under sin. 15 For that which I do, I do not own: for not what I will, this I do; but what I hate, this I practise. 16 But if what I do not will, this I practise, I consent to the law that [it is] right. 17 Now then [it is] no longer I [that] do it, but the sin that dwells in me. 18 For I know that in me, that is, in my flesh, good does not dwell: for to will is there with me, but to do right [I find] not. 19 For I do not practise the good that I will; but the evil I do not will, that I do. 20 But if what I do not will, this I practise, [it is] no longer I [that] do it, but the sin that dwells in me. 21 I find then the law upon me who will to practise what is right, that with me evil is there. 22 For I delight in the law of God according to the inward man: 23 but I see another law in my members, warring in opposition to the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which exists in my members. 24 O wretched man that I [am]! who shall deliver me out of this body of death? 25 I thank God, through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then I myself with the mind serve God's law; but with the flesh sin's law.