Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Romans, Chapter 3

I apologize if I come here this morning with a heavy heart, as I have had a very rough morning. This forum is not about me, however, but about the glory and beauty that is Christ Jesus. We are promised that God is faithful to those who follow Him and that faithfulness is reiterated here in the third chapter of Romans. He is faithful because even though we are separated from him because of our sin and do not deserve it, He provides a way for atonement. His love is unchanging as we discussed in Hebrews 13:8 last week, because Jesus is the same yesterday as he is today and will be tomorrow. We continue to see this love in chapter 3.

"5But if our unrighteousness brings out God's righteousness more clearly, what shall we say? That God is unjust in bringing his wrath on us? (I am using a human argument.) 6Certainly not! If that were so, how could God judge the world? 7Someone might argue, "If my falsehood enhances God's truthfulness and so increases his glory, why am I still condemned as a sinner?" 8Why not say—as we are being slanderously reported as saying and as some claim that we say—"Let us do evil that good may result"? Their condemnation is deserved." – Romans 3:5-8

Our condemnation is only necessary if we turn away from God. Yes he is glorified because he has provided a path for us to be reconciled by Him through Christ, but there is no glory given unless we accept hat gift. If we turn it down it is like we are mocking God, saying that we can absolve ourselves of our indiscretions when, of course, we cannot. This is why our condemnation is justified because we turn our backs on Him if we do not heed the message we are given. Paul goes into this a little deeper in the following verses, as well as providing the way out of sin.

"19Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world held accountable to God. 20Therefore no one will be declared righteous in his sight by observing the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of sin. 21But now a righteousness from God, apart from law, has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. 22This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, 23for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus" – Romans 3:19-24

This is the crux of Scripture right here! Even if we obey the law we are still short of the glory, but God has provided a way to Him through Christ. We already know from Hebrews that Christ has been assigned the job of mediator for us, but here we see just what that mediation means. It means that we achieve a righteousness that we cannot achieve in any other way. If any of you have studied most of the Old Testament you know that there were a series of rituals designed to gained righteousness, but they all fell pitifully short compared to the sacrifice Christ made for us.

The beauty of this Scripture comes in the line that there is no difference in our sin. There is no such thing as a small, unimportant sin because each one is enough to condemn us. I would be condemned just as much for cheating on a test in high school as Hitler would have been for being responsible for the deaths of millions. Both are enough to separate someone from God. The amazing thing is that the blood of Christ is enough to forgive each and everything between. That is nearly impossible to comprehend on a human scale, as Hitler is universally accepted as one of the most evil men who ever lived, but Christ died even willing that he should not perish and face the torment of hell. I am not saying that Hitler was forgiven and is in heaven, as I don't know what his final moments were like, but the power of grace and forgiveness through Christ even applied to someone as twisted and evil as him should he have accepted Christ's gift.


  1. How do we face God's wrath before we are forgiven?
  2. What form does the glory of God take when we do accept the gift of forgiveness?
  3. Why is grace enough?

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