Wednesday, November 24

Pauline Epistles: Romans
(chapter 1-3, essay 3)

Continuing on. And I'd like to highlight points I received from a very good comment I got on the last Romans post. I was trying too hard to read meaning into the Greek/non-Greek/wise/fool construction. This take on the more obvious meaning of being obligated to teach by all he has learned from everyone else. And, the final phrase the question which sort of passed on was what Paul might be ashamed of, turns out to be the crucifixion, not the most elegant end for ones Savior perhaps?

Anyhow, moving forward, and perhaps a little faster now that we have worked over the beginning. For the next bit, I'm going to block out verses and summarize their contents. Then, I'll end with a summary of the arc of the argument which I have just covered.

  1. Chapter 1 vv 18-32: Here Paul goes into a litany of things that pagan cultures have done which are wicked. The root sin is in ignoring god, they made pagan idols and worshipped them more than God. As a result, God gave them up unto all manner of unrighteousness (drunkenness, covetousness, sexual perversions, murder, debate (?!), gossip, pride, and so on. And not only that, but they approve of those who participate in such behavior.
  2. Chapter 2 vv 1-11: Then Paul notes, that those who pass judgment on other's who sin, as mere men, are likely sinning as well. Because at judgment God will reward each according to what he has done, one would do well to "persist in doing good".
  3. Chapter 2 vv 12-16: Paul then writes of the Law (here speaking I think of the Law passed down from the Torah). Sinning apart from the Law or under the Law is wrong. Just hearing the Law won't pass muster. If you haven't heard the Law, but act justly, the Law of their conscience will be judged.
  4. Chapter 2 vv. 17-28: For the Hebrews as well, outwardly obeying the forms of the Law (circumcision or not worshipping idols) means nothing if you steal or commit adultery.
    A man is not a Jew if he is only one outwardly
  5. Chapter 3 vv 1-8: And just because our unjust behavior increases the distance between us and God. This doesn't make it a good idea, that is glorifying God in making raising him even higher from us. This idea must have been a issue of the day. I don't see anyone trying that argument on their own today.
  6. Chapter 3 vv 9-15: But no one is righteous before the Lord.
  7. Chapter 3 vv 16-31: But we get to the finish of this segment:
    For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.

So what just transpired? Well, Paul tells us that the Gentiles and the Jews are sinners and he lists some of the transgressions common to both groups. But, neither group gets a pass, all are sinners. But all sinners are saved through faith in Jesus Christ.