· After making an argument in the previous chapter that circumcision is of the heart and not the body Paul anticipates the following question: “what advantage is it being a circumcised Jew then?
· Answer: they have the blessing of having and knowing the scriptures
· Even if some of the Jews did not have faith and are rejected by God that doesn’t make God any less faithful
· God is true only men lie just as Psalm 51:4 says
· Question: doesn’t our sin just point out God’s goodness. Then how can he judge us
· Answer: this is wrong thinking, God will judge the world for they are responsible
· Question: doesn’t my sin highlight his righteousness and he receive more glory for forgiving me?
· Answer: You might as well argue that we should pursue evil to highlight God’s goodness
· Some have actually suggested Paul was teaching this but he sharply disputes this characterization, and says those liars will be condemned
· Question: Aren’t the Jews more holy than the Gentiles:
· Answer: No, even the scriptures teach that everyone is a hopeless sinner (Psalm 14:1-3, 5:9, 140:3, 10:7, 36:1)
· Since the law teaches that everyone is a sinner then all those under the law (Jews) can not speak of being righteous and will be judged according to the strictest letter of the law
· So no one will be declared righteous by keeping the law.
· The purpose of the law is to be a standard that makes us conscience that we are sinners
· BUT now a new way to be declared righteous has been revealed, and it does not rely on keeping the law –
· It was spoken about by the prophets long ago.
· Those who place their faith in Jesus the Messiah can attain righteousness
· And this righteousness is available to everyone whether Jew or Greek
· Everyone has sinned and fall greatly short of God’s standard, but there is justification and grace offered to those who have redeemed by Jesus the Messiah
· God presented Jesus as an offering of atonement (like the lambs in the temple of old)
· This atonement is received by those who put faith in his redeeming blood shed for them.
· God did this so that everyone would know that he is just
· God purposely left the sins committed before the Messiah’s coming unpunished
· He did this so in the time of the Messiah he may be just in punishing all sins through Jesus, and at the same time he is the one who made us just by offering righteousness to anyone who puts faith in Jesus.
· No one now can boast of their righteousness by keeping the law.
· For someone can only be made righteous by having faith in what God did on their behalf
· God is the God of both the Gentiles and the Jews
· There is only one God, and he justifies both the circumcised (Jews) and the uncircumcised (Gentiles) by faith
· This does not nullify the law, because Jesus fulfilled the law in total for those who put their faith in him.
· I need to approach God in humility and thankfulness
· I do not earn favor with God, he did all the work through Jesus
· My part is to have faith and live my life in thankfulness for what was done on my behalf
· I need to be careful to teach that we are saved by grace alone
Thank you for loving me so much that you provided a way for me to be restored without having to rely on my own efforts. I am overwhelmed that you would provide my atonement by the death of Jesus. Continue to grow my faith that I might both live a life based on your grace as well as share that grace with others. May my life be marked not so much by the rules I keep, but by the love I show in repose to your love given to me. In Jesus Name I Pray. AMEN
Posted on Mon, May 18, 2015
by joel king