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No Favoritism

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Introduction

The last time we were together we were in the second part of . There Paul argues that all of creation display God’s “invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.” ()
Many in our society today would say that is fine for those who are not morally good people. But what about the people who live good, moral lives. How do they measure up?
In Paul’s day there were the Jews—who live their lives according to the “Law of God,” and there were moral Gentiles who often sought to please God. The problem is their moral standard.
You see, even today we have moral people who live good lives, but they do not live godly lives. They use the standard of goodness to compare themselves to others.
In , Paul is going to reveal that goodness—or being good—is not the standard by which God judges. So in
Romans 2:1–2 NIV84
You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge the other, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things. Now we know that God’s judgment against those who do such things is based on truth.
Romans 2:1-

God The Righteous Judge

Good Morals?

Paul tells us that those who are morally good, who tend to pass judgment on others—will be judged for those very things.

Judged By God!

God’s judgment is always based on “truth.”
So why does God judge man in the first place? Look at the next verse.
Romans 2:3–4 NIV84
So when you, a mere man, pass judgment on them and yet do the same things, do you think you will escape God’s judgment? Or do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness, tolerance and patience, not realizing that God’s kindness leads you toward repentance?
Romans 2:3–5 NIV84
So when you, a mere man, pass judgment on them and yet do the same things, do you think you will escape God’s judgment? Or do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness, tolerance and patience, not realizing that God’s kindness leads you toward repentance? But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath, when his righteous judgment will be revealed.

Judgment Leads to Repentance

So God wants man to live by God’s standard. Judgment helps us know when we’ve crossed over the line.
But man has a problem. We don’t like living by God’s rules.
Romans 2:5–11 NIV84
But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath, when his righteous judgment will be revealed. God “will give to each person according to what he has done.” To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life. But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger. There will be trouble and distress for every human being who does evil: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile; but glory, honor and peace for everyone who does good: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. For God does not show favoritism.
Romans 2:5-11

Our Stubbornness and Unrepentance Leads to God’s Judgment.

Doing Good Leads to Eternal life.

This makes it sound like we could work or earn our salvation. Yet man still has one more problem.
Romans 2:12–16 NIV84
All who sin apart from the law will also perish apart from the law, and all who sin under the law will be judged by the law. For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God’s sight, but it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous. (Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law, since they show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts now accusing, now even defending them.) This will take place on the day when God will judge men’s secrets through Jesus Christ, as my gospel declares.
Romans 2:12-

Law or No Law—Sin Will Be Judged!

Paul reminds the reader that a Jew under the law of God will be judged by the law—He already knows and understands that no one can live up to the law!
The Gentile that doesn’t have the law, will still be judged and will end up dying without the law.
It doesn’t matter how good you are! You and I can NEVER be good enough to earn our salvation.
When you come to verses 17-27 Paul builds the argument that those who teach against something end up doing the very thing they teach against!
Being a Jew—circumcision—has no value unless the Law of God is kept—someone who is guilty in one part of the Law is guilty of the entire law. It is all or nothing!
Paul continues his argument. The non-Jew (uncircumcised person) who keeps the law will end up condemning the Jew because he keeps the law.
It was never about circumcision.
Romans 2:28–29 NIV84
A man is not a Jew if he is only one outwardly, nor is circumcision merely outward and physical. No, a man is a Jew if he is one inwardly; and circumcision is circumcision of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the written code. Such a man’s praise is not from men, but from God.
Romans 2:28-2

It’s All About Obedience

Paul begins in chapter 1 to lay a foundation that helps us understand that NO ONE can say to God, “I never knew or heard about you.” Because all of creation declares the glory of God.
Likewise the Jew who has an appearance of being moral but still breaks God’s Law will not be spared the judgment of God.
In deed, God longs for obedience in the lives of mankind. He longs for us to trust Him enough to live our lives according to His standard because we trust Him.
But alas, most of us simple do not do that. And over the next several chapters Paul is going to demonstrate that no one is truly righteous, and that no one really pleases God.
He is going to show us that the Law of God does not lead to the righteous life God desires, but a life of Faith does.
God wants us to put our belief, and trust in Him, even if we have no tangible proof, or that is when it doesn’t make sense.
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