Bible study on Romans – Chapter 3
Dear brothers and sisters,
In this bible study on the 3rd chapter on the book of Romans we will go through the following parts:
- God’s faithfulness
- No one is righteous
- Righteousness through faith
Paul starts this chapter in discussion with the Jews in Rome. Based on chapter 2 you could indeed raise the question if it then is any advantage in being a Jew or Christian, when we still have the chance not to get into heaven even if we believe in God. Paul immediatelly lets them know that there are much advantages. Why? First of all, if we practice our faith, than we are also raised continiously with His word. And I have found out that I need His word in every situation. I used to think that I knew so much (maybe knew it all, I did not say, but I certainly acted like it), but without God I know nothing. For this reason God gave us the Bible to make sure that He teaches everything we need to know. But that He makes is available doesn’t make it automatically that we take the Bible and life by it. I wish that I had done so my whole life and lived my life accordingly, I believe that it would have saved me so much trouble. But I think that is one of the weaknesses we have as humans.
This discussion is ended by the conclusion that we should never think that because our unrighteousness shows God righteousness, that we can do evil and that good will result from it. Know in that case that your condemnation is just!
No one is righteous
Paul continious to ask them if then there is actually any advantage to being a Jew (or Christian). To me it is a bit confusing, because no he tells them not at all. I think it is both true. We already determined that there is not difference between Jews (and Christians ) and gentiles under the power of sin. Something we might want to think otherwise, but there is NO ONE under is that is righteous! When we go to heaven it only due to the sacrifice Jesus made for us on the cross dying for our sins.
God is determining my attention that they way that Paul is talking about the current time in which he lives, does resemble our current time as well:
10 As it is written: “There is no one righteous, not even one; 11 there is no one who understands; there is no one who seeks God. 12 All have turned away, they have together become worthless; there is no one who does good, not even one.”13 “Their throats are open graves; their tongues practice deceit.”“The poison of vipers is on their lips.” 14 “Their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness.” 15 “Their feet are swift to shed blood; 16 ruin and misery mark their ways, 17 and the way of peace they do not know.” 18 “There is no fear of God before their eyes.”
Does this description sound (even remotely) familiar over our current time. Don’t think that 2,000 years later we are doing it even better. Why not? Because we life in a sinful world. Even in my own life I can pinpoint enough moments that I really insult God by sinning. But the beautiful thing about God is that if we truly repent, we can always come to Him and ask (and receive) forgiveness.
Paul ends this part of the chapter with a very important conclusion: no ONE will be declared righteous in God’s sight by the works of the law, rather, through the law we become conscious of our sin.
Righteousness through faith
This chapter is concluded by explaining that righteousness will never come through our works, but is only given through faith and only to the ones that believe. It is beautiful to see how God makes not difference between Jews and gentiles in this matter. God is there for all of us.
But that we can only be rescued by faith does not mean that works are no longer needed or nullified. God showed us that our works will never be good enough by itself, but God truly needs us to do the works of the law, but we need to know that it requires faith to do them. God makes it very clear that being saved by faith did not and will never nullify the law by this faith. Not at all , rather we are expected to uphold the law. So, I pray that we all study the Bible to really understand the works as well and start also doing our best to keep most of the law, because I know God already know that we will be unable that we are able to keep them all.
God bless you all!