Book of Romans - Part 3

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Hello and Welcome to Our Church Without Walls: I’m preaching this Sunday on THE BOOK OF ROMANS

Join with me now as I give you an exposition on Paul’s Epistle to the Romans

Today’s Text is Part 3, Chapter 2

We are studying the book of Romans, and we are now in chapter two. In chapter one, there were some things mentioned that we are not to be doing if we say we love God. Some sinful behaviors were named that God does not like. Not only does God not like it, but when one continues in the sinful behavior, He turns them over to a reprobate mind. And since they won’t listen to God’s Word, He lets them wallow in their sin. Now, chapter two.

Not that everyone does all the things mentioned in chapter one, but the word in chapter 10, verse 13, "whosoever" or "whoever" shall call upon the name of the Lord, includes every one of us. However, as R. C. Sproul states it, the Apostle brings out in somewhat relentless indictment that each one of us is guilty before God, because we have all done some of those things listed in chapter one. Then, just in case anyone was able to claim they were not guilty of doing any of those things, the Apostle adds in verse 21, "You, therefore, who teach another, do you not teach yourself?” Paul is saying here that there are some who teach against sinful behavior and practices yet sin themselves. He contends in verse 1, "Therefore you are inexcusable, O man, whoever you are who judge". In other words, man is totally without excuse before a righteous Judge, God.

In verse 2, Paul justifies this statement, "We know that the judgment of God is according to truth". This is showing the Jews, as well as the Gentiles, that this judgment is according to the eternal rules of God; His eternal rules of justice and equity. We are to remember that God judges the heart and not according to our outward appearances. Paul knew that the Jews were well learned in the Scriptures and that God did indeed judge the heart, but then appeals also to their conscience in verse 3. "Do you think this, O man, you who judge those practicing such things, and doing the same, that you will escape the judgment of God?” Paul’s question eludes to yet another convicting question. Can the heart searching for God be imposed upon by formal pretences? The righteous Judge of all so bribed and put off? Even the most reasonable sinner, who acquits himself before men with the greatest of confidence, cannot escape the judgment of God!

When one looks at chapter 1 and these verses in chapter 2, it shows a horrific picture of human depravity! As the sin of the Gentile is revealed in verses 1 through 16, they begin to plead "not guilty" to God's indictment of his sin. They seek to justify their sin, or smooth it over with the claim of morality. Now-a-days, we call that “sugar coating the Word of God”. But the Apostle refutes their claim showing that unsaved man really has no consistent morality at all. As we have seen in verse 1, man judges the things which he does himself. In verse 16, we find God's divine judgment on the basis of His truth, which is the gospel of Jesus Christ (verses 2-5); according to man's "secrets", the motives which lie behind men's actions, (verses 6-10); without personal prejudice (verses 11 - 15); and in harmony with the gospel (verse 16).

In verses 17-20, we find the Jew also pleading "not guilty". This is because the Jew, at that time, was under the Mosaic Law and attempting to cover, or justify, his sin with the claim of religion, boasting in his spiritual privileges. The Scriptures teach that when one truly is righteous (even under the Mosaic Law), it will be manifested through the individual's testimony of the life he lives. It is true, as the Apostle tries to point out, that we have all sinned and become unworthy to stand before God in righteousness. However, one who continues living in sin nullifies his claim of innocence. And according to John MacArthur, "Paul turns his argument strictly to the Jews, God's covenant people. Neither their heritage, their knowledge, nor their ceremonies, will protect them from God's righteous judgment".

The Apostle's argument was mostly with the Jews who debated the Mosaic Law versus the grace of God. Paul previously argued that God looks at the inward man, but does not judge man on the outside (physically). So it is in verses 21-29 He deals with the law of circumcision. MacArthur adds, that Paul shows, "a Jew who continually transgressed God's law had no more of a saving relationship to God than an uncircumcised Gentile. The outward symbol was nothing without the inner reality". Being wronged by simple ritualism nullified any claim of superior religious standing.

The point Paul is trying to make is that the Jews had the law, but the Gentiles did not. However, the Apostle was pointing out that even if the Gentiles did not have the law, God had still written His law on their hearts. The law on their heart was that they knew the difference between right and wrong. Both Jew and Greek have consistently defied God, and they will be judged according to the light they have been given. Sproul adds, “The Jews will have a greater judgment because they have greater light, but the Gentiles surely are not without light.”

From this chapter, we learn that we are without excuse. There is nothing we can do to earn the righteousness of God. Nothing we can do to earn His love and forgiveness. Nothing we can do in our own power to earn our way to heaven when we die. There are no good deeds, no rituals, no extra work, no laws to follow, no “holy wars”, and no killing of infidels that will get us to heaven. No, it is only through the Grace of God that we can have a hope of heaven. As a matter of fact, according to Ephesians 2:8-9, it is “by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.”

Once again, God loves the sinner but hates the sinful behavior. And because God loves the sinner He provides an escape from the death of sin. It is through accepting the fact that we are sinners, believing that Jesus Christ is God’s Son, who died on the cross for our sins, who was buried, and then raised from the grave and ascended into heaven, and now sits at the right hand of God that we are saved. And anyone, no matter what your religion or background was or is, can be saved. For the Scriptures also tells us in Romans 10:13, “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” Are you saved today? Are you saved from the sin that will separate you from God for eternity? Are you saved today from being cast into the eternal lake of fire? Quit trying to earn your way to heaven and accept God’s gift of grace. Turn to Jesus Christ, repent from your sin, live forgiven, and forevermore in the righteousness of God.

I’m Dr. Robby sharing His Word, His Work, His Way