Category Short Study of Romans

Paul’s letter to the Romans is a wonderful dissertation on the tremendous grace of God towards men. Paul introduces himself as one having authority to speak, by virtue of being an ‘apostle’ or one sent out, an ambassador of Jesus Christ. In the course of his letter to the Romans, Paul identifies the Lord Jesus as the Christ, or the Messiah the Jews awaited, in fulfilment of the prophecies given by God so they would know the Messiah when He came. Paul also asserts unequivocally that Jesus is also the Son of God.

Paul’s purpose in writing to his letter to the Romans becomes clear as the letter develops; there were misunderstandings among the people about how Christ’s Gospel affected each of the people of the Jews and the Gentiles, those who were not part of the nation of Israel. Some Jews were persuaded that they were still obliged to follow the Law of Moses, and that without obedience, they could not be justified before God. Jews who rejected the salvation through faith in Christ believed that only through the Law could they approach God, and by its observance, they were justified by God. Soem believed non-Jews were outside of God’s plan or purpose for redemption. Paul declares to one and all that the Scripture makes clear that all men are sinners, regardless of their national or religious background, and that the Law had no power to justify anyone before God, but only through the covering of the blood of Jesus Christ, shed for the sins of mankind, could any man ever be made acceptable to God, and that only through faith in Christ and His shed blood as our covering could anyone receive the benefit of that justification. No one can earn God’s favour; only through His gracious extension of reconciliation can any man hope to be received by the Sovereign Lord.

It is impossible to do justice to Paul’s exceptional letter, but this series of instalments seeks to offer some observations and points to consider with regard to Paul’s message that God’s grace is found in Jesus Christ, and received by all people equally only through faith in His name and the covering provided by His death on the cross on our behalf. May God bless you as you seek to know Him better through the diligent study of His Word. 2 Pe 3:18

Romans 3:21-26a

Romans 3:21-26:           “But now the righteousness of God without the Law is revealed, being witnessed by the Law and the prophets; even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all who believe –  for there is no difference, for all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God – being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in His blood, to declare His righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; to declare, I say, at this time His righteousness: that He might be just, and the justifier of him with faith in Jesus.”

If Paul’s first words are true, the state of mankind is hopeless: if no one is righ...

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Romans 3:19-20

“Now we know that whatever things the law says, it says to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.

Therefore by the deeds of the Law shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the Law is the knowledge of sin.”

The Law was not given to everyone; it was given only to the children of Jacob; it applied exclusively to them. But there’s the rub: the list of judgements, ordinances, and rituals given toIsrael by God through Moses could not make them ‘good’. All it could do is show them how desperately far they were from attaining perfection, and how completely impossible it would be for them to ever succeed at attaining it...

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Romans 3:9-18

“What then? Are we better than they? No, in no wise: for we have previously proved both Jews and Gentiles, that all under sin;

As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:

There is none who understands, there is none who seeks after God. They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that does good, no, not one.

Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips, whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness; their feet are swift to shed blood; destruction and misery are in their ways, and the way of peace have they not known: There is no fear of God before their eyes.’” 

Paul drives his point home to both groups in his audience, by declaring, as the Scriptures assert,...

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Romans 3:5-8

“But if our unrighteousness commends God’s righteousness, what shall we say: is God unrighteous who brings wrath? I speak after the manner of a man.

It cannot be, since how shall God judge the world?

For if the truth of God has abounded through my lie to His glory, why am I yet also judged a sinner, and not, as we are slanderously reported, and according as certain ones affirm that we say – whose condemnation is just – “Let us commit evil that good may come.”

We have all heard the phrase, “The end justifies the means.” The essence of Paul’s statement here is that some have argued that their sinfulness had somehow shown God to be more righteous, so why should He be angry with them for it...

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Romans 3:1-4

Knowing that the development of his argument could incite some animated responses, and be misunderstood to suggest that God somehow had rejected the people of His Abrahamic covenant, Paul continues:

Romans 3:1 – 4  “What then is the benefit of the Jew, or what is the profit of the circumcision? Much in every way; first because they were entrusted with the oracles of God. For what if some unfaithful? Shall their unfaithfulness make the faithfulness of God useless? (or powerless, or ineffective)

Certainly not! But let God be true and every man false, according as it has been written, “That you are justified (or righteous) in your words and overcome when You are judged.”

 

God had called a man – Abram – out of obscurity, out of idolatry, and into fellowship with Himself...

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Romans 2:17-29

In his letter to the Romans, Paul laid out the expression of God’s love and grace towards all men in providing the atonement for man’s sin in Christ’s death on the cross. It was necessary that his audience understand that justification before God could not be found in human efforts at ‘being good’, or ‘following the rules’, because only a perfect record could be considered righteous. Instead, because no man was or ever will be perfect, God established a means by which imperfect, sinful men could be reconciled to the God they had offended by their sin, through the covering of our penalty by Christ’s death, and our access to its effects by faith in Him:

 

Romans 2:17-29

“Behold, you are called a Jew and rest in the law and boast in God, and knowhis will and prove (discern)...

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Romans 2:5-16

“But according to your hardness and impenitent heart you treasure up to yourself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, Who will render to each according to his deeds; to those who with patient endurance in well-doing are seeking glory and honour and immortality: eternal life; but to those of contention, and who disobey the truth, but obey unrighteousness: indignation and wrath, tribulation and anguish, upon every soul of man who performs evil, of the Jew first, and also of the Greek; but glory, honour, and peace to everyone who works good, to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

For there is no respect of persons with God.

For as many as have sinned without Law shall also perish without Law, and as many as have sinned in the Law shall be judged ...

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Romans 2:1-4

“Therefore you are inexcusable, O man, everyone who judges; for in that in which you judge another, you condemn yourself; for you who judge do the same things.

But we know that the judgment of God is according to truth upon those who do such things.

And do you reckon this, O man who judges those who do such things, and practise them yourself, that you shall escape the judgment of God? Or do you despise the riches of His goodness, and forbearance and longsuffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads thee to repentance?”

Repentance is not popular with many people today, but repentance is imperative if we are to receive Christ’s atonement for our sins. It is easy to look at what others do wrong and judge the wrongness of their actions; most of us do so frequently...

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Romans 1:21-32

When man refuses God, he descends into an abyss of desperate wickedness. There is neither a point of reference for ‘goodness’ nor the motivation to pursue what fails to fulfill some fleshly preference.

Without the spiritual anchor in God Himself, the natural urges of man’s flesh are the sole basis for his decisions. As the apostle James states in his letter, “Everyone is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desire and enticed. Then when desire has conceived, it brings forth sin and sin, when it is finished, brings forth death.” When men choose to expunge the knowledge of God from their minds, they receive the ‘fitting recompense’ of God abandoning them to their depraved thinking and dishonourable passions.

Unrestrained by God or the acknowledgement of God, unmotivated by ...

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Romans 1:16-18

“For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. For the righteousness of God is revealed in it by faith to faith according as it is written, ‘The just shall live by faith.’

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who hold the truth in unrighteousness …”

It has become popular to ignore or even deny God’s wrath. But the apostle Paul, whose ministry began with an encounter with the risen Christ, proclaims God’s wrath against sin as the basis for man’s need for salvation. A popular teacher’s speaking tour was entitled, “The Gods Are Not Angry”...

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