Summary: A fresh look at God’s plan to fix us, picking up the broken pieces of our lives and making us whole again. Let’s look at God’s plan to make us right with Him.
God’s Plan for Your Good
Romans 3:9-24 9 What shall we conclude then? Are we any better? Not at all! We have already made the charge that Jews and Gentiles alike are all under sin. 10 As it is written: "There is no one righteous, not even one; 11 there is no one who understands, 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."
19 Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world held accountable to God. 20 Therefore no one will be declared righteous in his sight by observing the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of sin.
21 But now a righteousness from God, apart from law, has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify.
22 This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.
-Several years ago a new product called “Disposable Guilt Bags” appeared in the supermarkets. It consisted of a set of ten ordinary brown bags on which were printed the following instructions: “Place the bag securely over your mouth, take a deep breath and blow all your guilt out, then dispose of the bag immediately.” The amazing thing about this is that the Associated Press reported that 2,500 kits had been quickly sold at $2.50 per kit.
-Wouldn’t it be great if we could dispose of our guilt so easily? Unfortunately, though, there is nothing on this earth powerful enough in itself to dispose of our guilt. We cannot fix ourselves, which is what many are trying to do. [Borrowed from Freddy Fritz, Sermoncentral.com]
-So today, I’d like to take a fresh look at God’s plan to fix us, picking up the broken pieces of our lives and making us whole again. Let’s look at God’s plan to make us right with Him.
1. Everyone is guilty before God (9-18)
-Paul begins this chapter by asking if there is any advantage to being Jewish, and answers Yes, it has its privileges. However, as he shows in these verses, that does not mean that Jews are superior to Gentiles. We are all under sin. We are all lawbreakers who stand guilty before a just God.
-Remember what the situation was in the church at Rome? Paul was dealing with the power struggle between the Jews and Gentiles. Some of the Jews considered themselves light years ahead of the Gentiles in their spirituality and closeness to God and His law. Gentiles had provided leadership for the people of God at Rome for 5 years while the Jews were forbidden to enter Rome. But when the Jews came back, there was conflict about what role the Gentiles were really qualified to play.
-Paul is arguing that one’s ethnicity has no bearing on a person’s standing with God. To me this is huge! One thing this shows us is that God is not a racist! Our American culture has grown more tolerant over the years, but many people continue to devalue others simply because they are different.
-So Paul tosses the race card and says, “We are all under sin!” We have nothing to brag about! There is not a single human being, except for Jesus Himself, who is righteous on his or her own account. Nobody is blameless.
-To strengthen his point, Paul cites 5 verses from the Jewish Scriptures in vv. 10-18. The Jews cannot deny these because they are from Scripture and pertain to Jews as well as Gentiles. We’ve all gone the wrong way! We all have sinned and are not qualified or equipped to see God’s glory.
-The Jews believed that a mortal human could not see God and live. We are so weak and frail that God’s glory would overwhelm us. All of life flows from Him and we cannot handle His glory – unless He changes us by breathing His immortal life into us! But by ourselves, without God’s grace we are vv. 10-18.
10-12. None is righteous… no one does good, not even one (Psalm 14:1-2)
13. Their throat is an open grave, they use their tongues to deceive (Psalm 5:9)