Romans Chapter 3
Let us continue our journey through the book of Romans. I want to thank you for the significant and positive response to our study. I pray that these emails are beneficial to your walk with the Lord and help you on your journey.
Read: Romans 3
Romans 3 contains one of the most famous passages in all of the Bible. In this chapter, we see the state of man, our proclivity for sinfulness. We also see the hope of the Lord for man. The hope that is for all humanity, not just the Jew, but to all who would believe int he Lord Jesus Christ. Let us begin.
1. God’s righteousness (1-8): Paul begins this chapter with an interesting statement. The statement is actually translated that the Jews have that they are born with the “oracles” of God, or Words of God. It was the Jews that had the Words of God. Which leads us to ask the question that we must wrestle with, do we believe the Bible is the Word of God? We learn later in Paul’s letter to Timothy that the scriptures are God-breathed. Before the New Covenant and New Testament, the Jews possessed the Word of God. That was their advantage. In verse 3, we dive into a deep understanding of what Paul is saying. Here we see Paul posing a question that seems to be suggesting that because many Jews will not believe in Christ, that God has violated His covenant with them. He asks the question, “What if some were unfaithful? Does their faithlessness nullify the faithfulness of God?” He returns later in chapters 9-11 to answer those questions more in-depth. Let me look to those for us and summarize them the best I can.
A. Romans 9:1-21- Here, we see that God is sovereign over humanity. He does all things justly, and this means that He is just in passing over Jews for a time. Paul is showing us this by looking at God’s sovereign choice of Abraham, Isaac, etc. That by God’s passing over of the Jews is not an injustice.
B. Romans 9:22-33- God here prophesied that Israel would reject Christ, and Gentiles would be offered salvation.
C. Romans 10:1-21- The Gospel is offered to the Gentiles, and this is really for the good of Israel. It is intended to provoke them to jealousy of relationship with God. It was a last-ditch effort to reach out to the ones that had already rejected Him.
It continues as you will see later, but God is still faithful to the Jews though they are not faithful to Him. This is the same as you and me today. Though we are not faithful to God many times in our life, He is still faithful to us. Amen! Paul also answers some paths that some will take in this understanding. The first is looking at God’s role as the Judge. The question is this, if our unrighteousness leads to God’s showing of mercy and grace, then how can God judge us for those things? But we know that answer all too well; the end does not justify the means. Secondly, one might ask, how can God judge my sin if my sin leads to something beneficial. Here we see that Paul doesn’t even answer this but moves to the final thought. Let’s do evil so that good may come. This thought goes through many forms. If we can do nothing well, then why not do evil? Why does it matter if we live by the Law or not? Paul will answer this later in Romans 6, by NO MEANS!
2. No one is righteous (9-20)- So are the Jews better off because they have the Law? The answer is no because all are charged with sin and are under sin. This is a grievous charge. That all of humanity is under sin. We are condemned as sinners. Look at verses 10-18. Those are not words that describe someone that is doing righteous things; rather, it is describing every one of us. We are all condemned under the weight of our sin nature.
A. No one is righteous: 9-11. No one is righteous. No one. No-one includes you. I know that may seem like harsh news, but it is true. We are not righteous. Even the deeds that we think are good and true are tainted with sin nature. We don’t seek God; our sin nature does not naturally seek God; instead, it seeks its own wants and desires, sin. This is bad news. It’s getting worse…
B. No one does good: 12. You do not do good things. Jesus says to the rich young ruler, why do you call me good? No one is good except God. There are no good people; we are all sinful. The measure of good is not of human measure but of God’s perfect and righteous standard, which condemns all.
C. We are broken: 13-18. Look at what Paul says about humanity. Man is wicked in their talk, in their actions, and our thoughts of God. When I first began ministry, I was surprised at some of the stuff that I would hear that people would do. Today not so much. It does not surprise me of the capability of man to sin. It’s in us. Paul says that we all have that in us. Apart from Christ, we are hopeless; we are wicked.
3. Righteous by Faith: 21-31. Paul begins this section with the best word, but. But now the righteousness of God has manifested apart from the Law! Here we begin to see a turning point in Paul’s writing. By this point, the reader should be convinced of the wickedness of humanity and of themselves. To end at verse 20 would be a detrimental ending. But here we find hope. In verse 22, the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For all who believe, not just the Jew, but to all! We can be included in that all. God is offering righteousness to men and women that is apart from the Law and apart of themselves. It is righteousness that is given freely to those who believe in another. That their righteousness is not in and of themselves, rather it is of Christ. The righteousness of grace. There is no difference in Jew and Gentile, for all have sinned, but both can be justified in the same way by Christ Jesus.
He is our propitiation, which means he has turned aside the wrath of God against us. Christ’s blood was shed that the wrath of God was poured out upon Him. He redeemed us from our sin, paid for us, and we are justified in God’s sight, made right, all because of the blood of Christ.
“What can wash away our sin? Nothing but the blood of Jesus!”
Paul coming back to his argument of the Law, if we are justified by faith, then does this negate the Law? The answer is no; rather, in Christ, we have fulfilled the Law through Christ. We have upheld the Law through Christ, who has perfectly upheld the Law on our behalf; our response is not to continue sinning, rather seek to live a life that is being conformed more into the image of Christ. To make His name known and famous.
I hope this is encouraging to you, I’m sorry if this seems confusing. I hope to help us better understand this book and indeed be thankful for what Paul is telling us of our wonderful Lord!
Thank you for reading! I love and miss you!