Summary: Deeds and impartiality
Deeds and Impartiality
Romans 2:6-10: Scripture everywhere teaches that salvation is not on the
basis of works (4:1-4; Eph 2:8-9), it consistently teaches that God’s
judgment is always on the basis of man’s deeds (Is. 3:10-11; Jer 17:10;
Romans 2:6-11, “6who "will render to each one according to his deeds":
7eternal life to those who by patient continuance in doing good seek for
glory, honor, and immortality;” 8but to those who are self-seeking and do
not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness--indignation and wrath,
9tribulation and anguish, on every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew
first and also of the Greek; 10but glory, honor, and peace to everyone who
works what is good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 11For there is
no partiality with God.
When unsaved men appear before the final judgment bar of G-D, the Great
White Throne Judgment, salvation will not be the issue there. This is a
judgment to determine the degree of punishment. Thus, G-D will mete out
punishment in relation to the evil deeds of the individual. By the same
token, at the judgment seat of Christ, where only believers appear, G-D
will reward us according to our deeds.
Eternal life: Not simply in duration, because even unbelievers will live
forever (2 Thess 1:9; Rev 14:9-11), but also in quality (John 17:3).
Eternal life is a kind of life, the holy life of the eternal G-d given to
believers. Self-seeking: This word may have originally been used to
describe a hireling or mercenary; someone who does what he does for money
regardless of how his actions affect others.
Some may view 2:7 as doing good in the sense of eternal life. This is
wrong for Romans clearly teaches that justification is by faith (3:22).
Paul does not contradict himself here, for the content of the verse is
judgment, but not justification. Believers who continue in good works will
receive rewards in the life to come. Whenever the NT speaks of eternal
life as a present possession, it is a gift received by faith (John 3:16);
but whenever it refers to eternal life as something to be received in the
future by those who are already believers, it refers to eternal rewards
based on works accomplished here on earth.
Jew First: Just as the Jews were given the first opportunity to hear and
respond to the Gospel (1:16); they will be the first to receive God’s
judgment if they refuse (Amos 3:2). Israel will receive severer punishment
because she was given greater light and blessing (9:3-4). Partiality: “To
receive a face” that is to give consideration to someone simply because of
his position, wealth, influence, popularity or appearance. Because it is
G-D’s nature to be just, it is impossible for Him to be anything but
Romans 2:12, “12For as many as have sinned without law will also perish
without law, and as many as have sinned in the law will be judged by the