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How Were People Saved in the Old Testament?

Paul goes on to make the bridge to us: “Now ‘it was credited to him’ was not written for Abraham alone, but also for us. It will be credited to us who believe in him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead. He was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification” (Romans 4:23–25).

Just like Abraham believed God would send a son that would bring salvation into the world as he was promised, we believe that Jesus is that son. The resurrection, Paul says in verse 25, was proof that God had accepted Jesus as the payment for our sins.

So, when we believe in the resurrection, we are saying, “I believe it worked! I believe Jesus accomplished what he said he accomplished! I believe when Jesus said ‘it is finished’ that it was finished.”

When we confess that and then live as if we believe in it, it is credited to us as righteousness.

Our faith, you see, is the same as Abraham’s: we both believe that God keeps his promise to send salvation. Abraham believed that God would send it; we believe that he has sent it. People in the Old Testament were saved just like us: They looked forward to the cross; we look backward at it. The direction is different, but the object is the same.


This article on how were people saved in the Old Testament originally appeared here.