More Than A Privilege
More Than A Privilege
Text: Romans 2:1-6
Date: Oct 01, 2006 - PPHC
I. Introduction - Paul’s Address to the Gentile Believers in Rome
A. Note the Jews’ Longstanding Contempt for the Gentiles
1. The Jews thought themselves to be “superior” to the Gentiles
2. Traditional views of the Jewish people.
· “God loves Israel alone of all the nations of the earth.”
· “God will judge the Gentiles w/one measure, and Israel w/another.”
· “Abraham sits by the gates of hell and does’t permit any wicked Israelite to go through.”
2. Rom. 1 - Paul condemns the “gentiles” for their debased behavior in Romans 1:18
a. “The wrath of God is revealed” against them (orgh - indignation; the punishment that was
inflicted by a magistrate)
1. The “lavish swelling of sap…breaking forth actively in relation to what is without[i] (a reaction);
2. An extension of the heat and burning feeling one can have when one is emotionally worked up[ii] (The poison of the asp); vengeance
3. Note: The anger of God toward sin: This is an anger “which righteous men not merely may, but as they are righteous, MUST feel.”[iii]
a. When we, as Christians, find ourselves becoming apathetic and unaffected by today’s
society, we are in trouble.
1. i.e. When we yawn at the subject of abortion, we are in trouble.
b. The Jewish people were cheering Paul...agreeing w/all that he had to say to the Gentiles
1. Note the culture of that day concerning the mythological gods…
a. The wrath of the gods demanded immediate expiation and expressed itself especially in
b. There can be no surer and sadder token of an utterly prostrate moral condition than not
being able to be angry with sin[v]
2. “…Vengeance [is] mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.” Rom. 12:19 > (Deut. 32:35)
- Therefore, with God’s wrath resting upon the unregenerate Gentiles, they needed and required the “righteousness” of God in order to be brought into right standing with Him.
- The apostle has now to prove that the righteousness of God is as necessary to the Jew as to the pagan[vi]
II. Now Paul Addresses the Jews – Chpt. 2:1
A. A Covenant People - Made By God with Abraham – Genesis 15
1. Covenant word used was chesed (lovingkindness), not agape
B. Their “special place” was in the area of “responsibility”, not privilege; their “special
place” was in the area of “performance”, not position.”
1. Exod. 19:5-6 “Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant,
then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth [is] mine:
And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation...”
a. The special position granted to the Jew is that to him God had committed the oracles, or
Word of God (10 Com.) They were to do, not as they pleased, but as God pleased.
2. The Jews were the people who judged—who pronounced all Gentiles to be born in sin and
a. “The Jew is ready enough to judge the Gentile. But he forgets that the same principle on
which the Gentile is condemned, namely, that he does evil in spite of better knowledge
(1:32), condemns him also. [viii] “Thou that judgest, doest the same things,” Denney says,
“Not, you do the identical actions, but your conduct is the same, i.e., you sin against light.
The sin of the Jews was the same, but their sins were not.”[ix]
b. “Thou art inexcusable”: anapologētos (aναπολογητος), “without an apology or defense,”
the word “apology” being used here not in the sense of begging one’s pardon, but in the
sense of talking one’s self off from a charge. The Jew is unable to talk himself off from the
charge of failing to live up to the light he has.[x]
1. “Special choice by God always brings special responsibilities to God.”
2. The Jews failed in the keeping of that covenant...Mal. 1:10 “ I have no pleasure in you,
saith the LORD of hosts, neither will I accept an offering at your hand.”
C. The Jews’ belief that God would not punish them was grossly mistaken
1. The Jew certainly thought, in many cases, that the privilege of his birth would of itself
ensure his entrance into the kingdom (Matt. 3:8, 9)[xi]
2. One of the most oppressed people in history
a. Pharaohs, Nebuchadnezzar, Sennacherib, the Caesars, as well as Stalin and Hitler; today,
by all of the other Arab countries.
D. This evidences the true meaning of “chosenness”
v. 3 – “Thinkest thou this, O man,…” (Thou is emphatic…“you, the Jew”) Yet the su (συ) indicates that of all men the Jew, so distinguished by special revelation, should least have fallen into such an error. He is ‘the servant who knew his Lord’s will,’ and whose judgment will be most rigorous if it is neglected.”[xii]
- “If God has selected you for some special purpose, He won’t allow you to get by with anything less than that!”
III. Christianity, Not Just A Privilege, But A Responsibility
A. Salvation Is A Gift of God
1. 2 Pet. 1:4 “Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises;”
2. Rom. 12, 1 Cor. 12, and Ephesians 4 lists giftings to the Church
B. The Believer’s Responsibility - Work !!!
1. James 2:20 “Faith without works is dead...”
2. Rom. 2:6 “Who will render to every man according to his deeds.”
3. Acts 1:8 “But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”
[i]/Theological dictionary of the New Testament.
[ii]Dictionary of Biblical Languages with Semantic Domains
[iii]Wuest's word studies from the Greek New Testament
[iv]/Theological dictionary of the New Testament.
[v]Wuest's word studies from the Greek New Testament
[vi]Wuest's word studies from the Greek New Testament
[vii]Wuest's word studies from the Greek New Testament
[viii]Wuest's word studies from the Greek New Testament
[ix]Wuest's word studies from the Greek New Testament
[x]Wuest's word studies from the Greek New Testament
[xi]Wuest's word studies from the Greek New Testament
[xii]Wuest's word studies from the Greek New Testament