Summary: All Scripture is INSPIRED and PROFITABLE.
1. By now we understand Paul’s point in Romans:
a. “There is ONLY ONE way to be saved.”
b. There aren’t 2 options, or 3 options… but just 1.
c. The righteousness required by God is the very righteousness provided by God through his Son Jesus Christ.
Romans 1:16-17 (NKJV) 16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. 17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “The just shall live by faith.”
NOTE: No one is left out of the picture because it’s the heart of God to see all come to salvation…
2 Peter 3:9 (NKJV) 9 The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
• He’s addressed the unrighteous, unbelieving pagans in CH1.
• He then turned to the self-righteous hypocrites in CH2.
• Now he turns to the super-righteous Hebrews in CH3.
I. (3:1-2) GOD GAVE HIS WORD
1. (1-2) Doesn’t being a Jew mean something?
a. The Jews really saw themselves as being absolutely, 100% right with God because of their ancestry & their birth.
b. They were God’s chosen people… that settles it!
c. Yet that’s the question Paul anticipates here: “Hey wait a minute, how can we be the same as them?!”
YOU SEE they trusted in themselves.
• They lived with a religious self-confidence that deceived them.
• Because they had the Word of God they were safe.
• Because they were Hebrew, were God’s spiritual gift to the unbelieving, sinful world, and that alone was enough for them to be on a right standing with God.
And they, like we, reading through the first few chapters of Romans can so easily fall into a sense of self-righteousness…
• Oh, we study The Bible today… so we’re OK.
• We have the right religious affiliation, we were born into the right family, we were raised in the church…
TODAY this question might be something like…
• What does my water baptism mean then? Why did I go through confirmation? Doesn’t my giving put me in a different position?
• I’ve done everything the priest or minister told me to do.
• Doesn’t that amount for anything?
• Sure some it can be beneficial, but not for salvation.
WELL FOR JEW, they were given great advantages.
• Greatest one was receiving & delivering the very Word of God! -- He revealed His Word to them. Isn’t that cool?
THINK BACK FOR A MOMENT… the very first time something in the Bible made sense to you. Wasn’t that just so wonderful?!
• As a kid I would read the Bible and sit in church, but not understand a thing the pastor was saying!
• As a matter of fact, my parents gave me crayons & paper to pass the time because THEY KNEW I wouldn’t understand.
• But at age 23 it clicked! The Spirit of God opened my eyes to my own sinfulness… the Bible went from being just black, white, and red letters on white paper to being in full color!
THROUGH THE JEWS… God used prophets, leaders, & apostles to proclaim His word to the world! What a wonderful privilege that is!
• Do you know it was the Jews love for God’s Word that has preserved the very Bible that we have today!
• The Word of God has been held in highest honor & reverence by the Jewish people!
NOTE: The Jews would never set their Bibles on the floor. They would never put any other books on top of it. When they opened the Word they would kiss it.
• The Talmud (Torah Commentary) gave specific instructions on how to care for the scrolls as they were being copied.
An authentic copy must be the exemplar, from which the transcriber ought not in the least deviate. No word or letter, not even a yod (a vowel mark), must be written from memory, the scribe not having looked at the codex before him…. Between every consonant the space of a hair or thread must intervene; between every word, the breadth of a narrow consonant; between every new section, the breadth of nine consonants; between every book, three lines… Besides this, the copyist must sit in full Jewish dress, wash his whole body, not begin to write the name of God with a pen newly dipped in ink, and should a king address him while writing that name he must take no notice of him…. The rolls in which these regulations are not observed are condemned to be buried in the ground or burned; or they are banished to the schools, to be used as reading books. http://www.evidenceforchristianity.org