Posts tagged Grace
Posts tagged Grace
I. The Advantage of the Jewish people
1-2 Then what advantage has the Jew? Or what is the value of circumcision? Much in every way. To begin with, the Jews were entrusted with the oracles of God.
An underlying message here is that circumcision does not save the Jews. However, Jews are God’s chosen people. He gave them the oracles of God. The Jews have the scriptures, and His Word, Jesus Christ, was born among them. Jesus Christ was a Jew. These alone are amazing advantages.
II. Unbelieving Jews do not make God wrong
3-4 What if some were unfaithful? Does their faithlessness nullify the faithfulness of God? By no means! Let God be true though every one were a liar, as it is written, “That you may be justified in your words, and prevail when you are judged.
Jews who have rejected Jesus Christ do not make the work of God an exercise in futility. Rather, the Jews’ lack of faith reveals God’s righteousness. Isn’t it that we now see God’s truth, which the Jews did not see due to their loftiness?
III. Faulty Logic Condemns Man
5-8 But if our unrighteousness serves to show the righteousness of God, what shall we say? That God is unrighteous to inflict wrath on us? (I speak in a human way.) By no means! For then how could God judge the world? But if through my lie God’s truth abounds to his glory, why am I still being condemned as a sinner? And why not do evil that good may come?—as some people slanderously charge us with saying. Their condemnation is just.
God is never unrighteous. The affirmative is blasphemous. How can anything righteous come out of something unrighteous? Does an apple tree bear oranges? Do we have to challenge God through our sin, so that righteousness may come forth, lest He kills the perpetrator?
IV. Everyone is Unrighteous
9-18 What then? Are we Jews any better off? No, not at all. For we have already charged that all, both Jews and Greeks, are under sin, as it is written: “None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God. All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one. Their throat is an open grave; they use their tongues to deceive. The venom of asps is under their lips. Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness. Their feet are swift to shed blood; in their paths are ruin and misery, and the way of peace they have not known. There is no fear of God before their eyes.
No one is righteous, whether Jew or Greek. Everyone is under sin. Our thoughts, words, and actions commit sin regularly. We may not realize it, or sometimes we are aware when our tongue lies, our hands steal, and our motive is to rape and kill.
V. The Law is Convicting
19-20 Now we know that whatever the law says it speaks to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be stopped, and the whole world may be held accountable to God. For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin.
This is the price of knowing the law; knowing sin together with it. Because of the law, we are convicted to sin. The law is a very tall order to fulfill. For if we only break one of it, we break everything. It is all or nothing.
VI. God’s Righteousness through Jesus Christ
21-26 But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it— the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins. It was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.
Since no one, not even Jew or Greek, can escape from sin, God revealed his righteousness through His son Jesus Christ. God justified us through our faith in Him.
VII. Faith and Not Works
27 Then what becomes of our boasting? It is excluded. By what kind of law? By a law of works? No, but by the law of faith.
Because saving faith alone will suffice, no one can boast in front of God through mundane efforts. We can not ask for our inheritance of heaven through our lawful deeds.
VIII. God Offers Justification to Both Jew and Gentile.
28-30 For we hold that one is justified by faith apart from works of the law. Or is God the God of Jews only? Is he not the God of Gentiles also? Yes, of Gentiles also, since God is one—who will justify the circumcised by faith and the uncircumcised through faith.
God offers to justify both Jews and Gentiles. And to Jews and Gentiles, God gave the same condition for justification, through faith. He does not need our good works, but our faith alone.
IX. Upholding the Law
31 Do we then overthrow the law by this faith? By no means! On the contrary, we uphold the law.
Certainly, we can not disregard the law. For to be justified among people, Jews and Christians must follow the law as a testimony of our faith in God through His Son. The scriptures, and with it the law, foretold the saving grace of Jesus Christ, and therefore the law must be upheld.