Abram was perplexed. God had promised him an heir and, late in his life, he was still childless. He expressed his concerns to God in Genesis 15:3. “You have given me no children.”
God answered him by taking him outside to look up at the night sky. Then God spoke to Abram. “Your descendants will be like the stars in the sky.”
Then, in what is one of the key verses of the Old Testament, it states that “Abram believed God and it was credited to him as righteousness.” Genesis 15:6
Imagine that. Before the law had been given, and before Abram had undergone ritual circumcision, God had already declared him righteous. In other words, Abram was righteous in God eyes, not on the basis of anything that he had done, but simply on the basis of his belief in God’s promise.
It’s a cliché, but it’s true nonetheless. In essence Abram declared, “God said it, I believe it, and that settles it.”
The same is true for us. God says that he loves us and that he has sent his Son, Jesus, to offer his life as a sacrifice for sin. If we believe him, and place our faith in Christ, God says he will declare us righteous.