Romans 2:1-16—Guilt & Hypocrisy of the Religious

1. Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever you art that judges: for wherein you judges another, thou condemns yourself; for you that judges do the same things.

2. But we are sure that the judgment of God is according to truth against them which commit such things.

3. And you think this, O man, that judges them which do such things, and do the same, that you shalt escape the judgment of God?

4. Or despise you the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leads thee to repentance?

5. But after your hardness and impenitent heart treasure up unto yourself wrath against the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God;

6. Who will render to every man according to his deeds:

7. To them who by patient continuance in well doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, eternal life:

8. But unto them that are contentious, and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, indignation and wrath,

9. Tribulation and anguish, upon every soul of man that doeth evil, of the Jew first, and also of the Gentile;

10. But glory, honor, and peace, to every man that works good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile:

11. For there is no respect of persons with God.

12. For as many as have sinned without law shall also perish without law: and as many as have sinned in the law shall be judged by the law;

13. (For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified.

14. For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves:

15. Which show the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;)

16. In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel.

I. The Jews are condemned (Romans 2:1-3; 17-24)

a. As Paul turns to show further the depraved sin of humanity, he is going to shift from showing the spiral downward that those ignorant of God descend.

b. Paul is now going to show the inner depravity of men is so pervasive, that we can take the good things from God and twist them into sinful outcomes

i. Think how the holiness of God revealed in the laws of scripture lead to pride and legalism

ii. Think how the institutions of worship become twisted into organizations of politics, greed and corruption

iii. Think how the teachers of truth are often shockingly enslaved by the power of sin

c. So Paul is going to show that it is not the law, or God’s good gifts that is the problem here

i. But it is the sinful nature that we bring to our encounter with God’s gifts that drives us to evil ends

ii. God’s word is perfectly pure, but we are so sinful that we find ways to interpret it to justify sin

iii. God’s law is loving and righteous, but we are so depraved that we fill our hearts with pride and judgmentalism when we obey it

iv. God’s worship is so transforming, but we bring our inclinations of idolatry and refuse to worship God in the way He demands

d. So with the purity of God’s word and His ways, we should constantly be encountering conviction of sin and calling to a higher purity in word, deed, and attitude if we are letting Him speak to us His truth

i. We should recognize our tendency to justify ourselves and our prideful inclination to see others need of grace before our own as part of our depraved nature

e. We are so tainted by sin that we cannot trust our mind or emotions, but must only trust the Word of God

i. There is a way that seems right to a man, but the end thereof is destruction

ii. Only Grace and the Power of the Holy Spirit can break this sinful bondage off of us

f. Romans 2:1 -- there is a controversy as to who Paul is addressing here: some think that it is moral Gentiles, while most feel that it is Jews

i. Paul doesn't say Jews here but he is addressing them:

1. The major point in chapter 2 is the universal sinfulness of humankind

2. Paul's point is that we are all involved in the solidarity of sin which embraces the entire human race

3. Paul's argument addresses all who practice (prasso -- relates to lifestyle, behavioral pattern)

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