Summary: Outline of the Study of Romans
Paul presents six questions and answers them for his readers.
I. FIRST QUESTION AND ANSWER (3:1-2)
A. Question (3:1): What are the advanges of being a Jew or of
B. Answer (3:2): The most important advantage is that Israel has been
entrusted with the Word of God.
II. SECOND QUESTION AND ANSWER (3:3-4)
A. Question (3:3): Will Israel’s unfaithfulness nullify God’s promises?
B. Answer (3:4)
1. Paul’s testimony (3:4a): "Of course not! Though everyone else in the world is a liar, God is
2. David’s testimony (3:4b): Paul quotes from Psalm 51:4 to prove his point.
Ill. THIRD QUESTION AND ANSWER (3:5-8)
A. Question (3:5): If our unrighteousness brings out God’s righteousness, isn’t he unfair to punish
B. Answer (3:6-8)
1. The reprobation (3:8b): Paul has been falsely accused of teaching this very thing-that is, do
evil that good may result.
2. The reply (3:6-8a): Paul responds, "If you follow that kind of thinking ... you might as well say
that the more we sin the better it is! Those who say such things deserve to be condemned."
IV. FOURTH QUESTION AND ANSWER (3:9-20)
A. Question (3:9a): Are the Jews better than all other people?
B. Answer (3:9b-20)
1. The corruption (3:10-18): Paul describes the cancer of sin that has infected the human race.
a. Human conscience is depraved (3:10-11): No one even desires to know and follow God.
b. Human character is depraved (3:12): All have left the path of good and have became
c. Human conversation is depraved (3:13-14): People’s talk is foul and filthy, resembling:
(1) The stench from an open grave (3:13a)
(2) The poison from a deadly snake (3:13b-14)
d. Human conduct is depraved (3:15-18).
(1) "They are quick to commit murder" (3:15-17).
(2) "They have no fear of God" (3:18).
2. The conclusion (3:9, 19-20): After presenting all the terrible facts, Paul reaches this twofold
a. Both Jew and Gentile have sinned against God (3:9).
b. Both Jew and Gentile stand accused before God (3:19-20).
V. FIFTH QUESTION AND ANSWER (3:21-30)
A. Question (3:21a): How then does God save people?
B. Answer (3:21b-30)
1. The need for salvation (3:23): It is desperately needed, for all have sinned and fallen short of
2. The Old Testament witness to salvation (3:21b): The Scriptures promise salvation apart from
3. The method of salvation (3:22, 24-25, 27-28)
a. Negative (3:27-28): It is not accomplished by good works.
b. Positive (3:22, 24-25): It comes about by grace through faith in the sacrifice of Christ.
4. The legal accomplishment of salvation (3:26): It permits a just and holy God to declare
repenting sinners righteous.
5. The scope of salvation (3:29-30): It is available for both Jews and Gentiles alike.
VI. SIXTH QUESTION AND ANSWER (3:31)
A. Question (3:31a): Does faith nullify the law?
B. Answer (3:31b): To the contrary, faith fulfills the law!