Week #143; Wed, Sep 23: Romans 3:1–10:21

CHAPTER OBSERVATIONS:

Romans 3:1, I. God’s Righteousness Upheld; II. No One Is Righteous; III. The Righteousness of God Through Faith

I. KEY TEXT (God’s Righteousness Upheld): “Then what advantage has the Jew? Or what is the value of circumcision? Much in every way. To begin with, the Jews were entrusted with the oracles of God. What if some were unfaithful? Does their faithlessness nullify the faithfulness of God? By no means? Let God be true through every one were a liar, as it is written, ‘That you may be justified in your words, and prevail when you are judged.’” (3:1-4)
A. INFERENCE: “But if our unrighteousness serves to show the righteousness of God, what shall we say? That God is unrighteous to inflict wrath on us? (I speak in a human way.)” (3:5)
1. FINDINGS: “By no means! For then how could God judge the world? But if through my lie God’s truth abounds to his glory, why am I still being condemned as a sinner? And why not do evil that good may come?–as some people slanderously charge us with saying. Their condemnation is just.” (3:6-8)
2. CRITERIA: “In every willful sin, there is contempt of the goodness of God. And though the branches of man’s disobedience are very various, all spring from the same root. But in true repentance, there must be hatred of former sinfulness, from a change wrought in the state of the mind, which disposes it to choose the good and to refuse the evil.” (Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary)
3. CONDITION: “. . . we are to vindicate the righteousness of God, at whatever expense to ourselves.” (Jamieson, Fausset, & Brown Commentary)
4. CAUSE: “It shows also a sense of inward wretchedness.” (Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary)
5. EFFECT: “Such is the great change wrought in repentance, it is conversion, and is needed by every human being. The ruin of sinners is their walking after a hard and impenitent heart.” (Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary)
6. RECOMMENDATION: “The law could not save in or from sins, yet it gave the Jews advantages for obtaining salvation. Their stated ordinances, education in the knowledge of the true God and his service, and many favors shown to the children of Abraham, all were means of grace, and doubtless were made useful to the conversion of many.” (Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary)

II. KEY TEXT (No One Is Righteous): “What then? Are we Jews any better off? No, not at all. For we have already charged that all, both Jews and Greeks, are under sin, as it is written: ‘None is righteous, no, not one; no one understands; no one seeks for God. All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one. Their throat is an open grave; they use their tongues to deceive. The venom of asps is under their lips. Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness. Their feet are swift to shed blood; in their paths are ruin and misery, and the way of peace they have not known. There is no fear of God before their eyes.’” (3:9-18)
A. INFERENCE: “Now we know that whatever the law says it speaks to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be stopped, and the whole world may be held accountable to God.” (3:19)
1. FINDINGS: “For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin.” (3:20)
2. CRITERIA: “A number of quotations are advanced-mostly from the Septuagint or Greek version of the Old Testament-establishing the hopeless evil of man’s condition. These apply, in the first place, to God’s peculiar people, the Jews; but if true of them, how terrible must be the condition of the great heathen world! Every mouth will be stopped and all the world brought in guilty before God, Romans 3:19.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
3. CONDITION: “What need for salvation! What can atone for such sin, or cleanse such hearts, save the redeeming grace of God?” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
4. CAUSE: “Law here is obviously employed in the wide sense of conscience as well as Scripture. It is God’s ideal held up before our faces, to show us from what we have fallen. The looking-glass is intended, not to wash the face, but to show how much it needs washing.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
5. EFFECT: “You may commend your soap, and no one will use it; but if you reveal the discoloring filth, people will be only too glad to avail themselves of the cleansing power which otherwise they would neglect and despise.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
6. RECOMMENDATION: Look intently into the mirror and scrub with grace.

III. KEY TEXT (The Righteousness of God Through Faith): “But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it–the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe.” (3:21-22)
A. INFERENCE: “For there is no distinction: for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins.” (3:23-25)
1. FINDINGS: “It was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.” (3:26)
2. CRITERIA: “Then what becomes of our boasting? It is excluded. By what kind of law? By a law of works? No, but by the law of faith. For we hold that one is justified by faith apart from works of the law.” (3:27-28)
3. CONDITION: “Or is God the God of Jews only? Is he not the God of Gentiles also? Yes, of Gentiles also, since God is one–who will justify the circumcised by faith and the uncircumcised through faith. Do we then overthrow the law by this faith? By no means! On the contrary, we uphold the law.” (3:29-31)
4. CAUSE: “The sacrifice Jesus made in “sacrificing his life for us” (3:25) is a satisfactory sacrifice (1 John 2:2; 4:10). Such a sacrifice has God’s wrath in full view. The need for the sacrifice and the cause of God’s wrath were painfully explained in Romans 1:18–3:20. (Tyndale Concise Bible Commentary)
5. EFFECT: “God sent Christ to satisfy that need of a sacrifice. The atoning sacrifice or propitiation contemplates mankind’s liability to God’s wrath against sin and is God’s gracious provision to deliver them from that wrath. Christ is the believer’s atoning sacrifice, satisfying with his blood God’s holy demand that sin be judged.” (Tyndale Concise Bible Commentary)
6. RECOMMENDATION: Come to Christ; believe in Jesus Christ.

Romans 4:1, I. Abraham Justified by Faith; II. The Promise Realized Through Faith

I. KEY TEXT (Abraham Justified by Faith): “What then shall we say was gained by Abraham, our forefather according to the flesh? For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God.” (4:1-3)
A. INFERENCE: “Now to the one who works, his wages are not counted as a gift but as his due. And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness, just as David also speaks of the blessing of the one to whom God counts righteousness apart from works: Blessed are those whose lawless deeds are forgiven, and whose sins are covered; blessed is the man against whom the Lord will not count his sin.” (4:4-8)
1. FINDINGS: “Is this blessing then only for the circumcised, or also for the uncircumcised? We say that faith was counted to Abraham as righteousness. How then was it counted to him? Was it before or after he had been circumcised? It was not after, but before he was circumcised. He received the sign of circumcision as a seal of the righteousness that he had by faith while he was still uncircumcised. The purpose was to make him the father of all who believe without being circumcised, so that righteousness would be counted to them as well, and to make him the father of the circumcised who are not merely circumcised but who also walk in the footsteps of the faith that our father Abraham had before he was circumcised.” (4:9-12)
2. CRITERIA: “In Abraham’s case it is clear that he was justified when he was still a Gentile. The initial badge of Judaism was stamped upon him long after he had believed God. The Apostle lays great stress on this order of time: first faith, then obedience, and afterward circumcision, that made him the father and founder of the Jewish people.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
3. CONDITION: “Justification is imputed to him in the first stage-not in circumcision, not even in obedience, but in the simple act of believing God, as we have it in Genesis 15:6. We do not hear of circumcision till Genesis 17:1-27.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
4. CAUSE: “Clearly, then, if we Gentiles have Abraham’s faith, we may also claim the same justifying righteousness, though we have not received any outward rite. And also, we may be reckoned among his children.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
5. EFFECT: “If we enter into the meaning of these earlier stages of the patriarch’s life, we may claim the promises made to him in uncircumcision. Count them up; they are yours. We, too, may become heirs of the world; in us also, because we are his seed, all mankind may be blessed.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
6. RECOMMENDATION: Believe first.

II. KEY TEXT (The Promise Realized Through Faith): “For the promise to Abraham and his offspring that he would be heir of the world did not come through the law but through the righteousness of faith.” (4:13)
A. INFERENCE: “For if it is the adherents of the law who are to be the heirs, faith is null and the promise is void. For the law brings wrath, but where there is no law there is no transgression.” (4:14-15)
1. FINDINGS: “That is why it depends on faith, in order that the promise may rest on grace and be guaranteed to all his offspring–not only to the adherent of the law but also to the one who shares the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all, as it is written, ‘I have made you the father of many nations’–in the presence of the God in whom he believed, who gives life to the dead and calls into existence the things that do not exist. ” (4:16-17)
2. CRITERIA: “In hope he believed against hope, that he should become the father of many nations, as he had been told, ‘So shall your offspring be.’ He did not weaken in faith when he considered his own body, which was as good as dead (since he was about a hundred years old), or when he considered the barrenness of Sarah’s womb.” (4:18-19)
3. CONDITION: “No distrust made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised.” (4:20-21)
4. CAUSE: “That is why his faith was counted to him as righteousness.” (4:22)
5. EFFECT: “But the words ‘it was counted to him’ were not written for his sake alone, but for ours also. It will be counted to us who believe in him who raised from the dead Jesus our Lord, who was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification.” (4:23-25)
6. RECOMMENDATION: Believe.

Romans 5:1, I. Peace with God Through Faith; II. Death in Adam, Life in Christ

I. KEY TEXT (Peace with God Through Faith): “Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (5:1)
A. INFERENCE: “Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God.” (5:2)
1. FINDINGS: “More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.” (5:3-5)
2. CRITERIA: “For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person–though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die–but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (5:6-8)
3. CONDITION: “Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life.” (5:9-10)
4. CAUSE: “More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.” (5:11)
5. EFFECT: “We stand in grace; we look for glory. Our standing is sure, although apart from our feelings or deserts. It is ours forever, through union with the living Christ. It is our admission to the home of God’s elect. We have passed the threshold and have received, in the antechamber, the new white robe.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
6. RECOMMENDATION: Claim your white robe with full faith in Jesus Christ.

II. KEY TEXT (Death in Adam, Life in Christ): “Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned–for sin indeed was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not counted where there is no law.” (5:12-13)
A. INFERENCE: “Yet death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those whose sinning was not like the transgression of Adam, who was a type of the one who was to come.” (5:14)
1. FINDINGS: “But the free gift is not like the trespass. For if many died through one man’s trespass, much more have the grace of God and the free gift by the grace of that one man Jesus Christ abounded for many.” (5:15)
2. CRITERIA: “And the free gift is not like the result of that one man’s sin. For the judgment following one trespass brought condemnation, but the free gift following many trespasses brought justification.” (5:16)
3. CONDITION: “For if, because of one man’s trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ.” (5:17)
4. CAUSE: “Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men.” (5:18)
5. EFFECT: “For as by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous. Now the law came in to increase the trespass, but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, so that, as sin reigned in death, grace also might reign through righteousness leading to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (5:19-21)
6. RECOMMENDATION: Die to sin.

Romans 6:1, I. Dead to Sin, Alive to God; II. Slaves to Righteousness

I. KEY TEXT (Dead to Sin, Alive to God): “What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it? Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death?” (6:1-3)
A. INFERENCE: “We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.” (6:4)
1. FINDINGS: “For if we have been united with in in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his. We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin.” (6:5-6)
2. CRITERIA: “For one who has died has been set free from sin. Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. We know that Christ, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him. For the death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives he lives to God.” (6:7-10)
3. CONDITION: “So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.” (6:11)
4. CAUSE: “Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions. Do not present your members to sin as instruments for unrighteousness, but present yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and your members to God as instruments for righteousness.” (6:12-13)
5. EFFECT: “For sin will have no dominion over you, since you are not under law but under grace.” (6:14)
6. RECOMMENDATION: Be dead to sin; alive in Christ Jesus. Abide in Him.

II. KEY TEXT (Slaves to Righteousness): “What then? Are we to sin because we are not under law but under grace? By no means! Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness?” (6:15-16)
A. INFERENCE: “But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, and having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness.” (6:17-18)
1. FINDINGS: “I am speaking in human terms, because of your natural limitations. For just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness leading to sanctification.” (6:19)
2. CRITERIA: “For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness. But what fruit were you getting at that time from the things of which you are now ashamed?” (6:20)
3. CONDITION: “For the end of those things is death. But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit you get leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life.” (6:21-22)
4. CAUSE: “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (6:23)
5. EFFECT: “Our real owner and master, whatever we may say to the contrary, is indicated by our life. We belong to the one whom, in a crisis, we obey. Service to sin leads to uncleanness, iniquity, and death. Service to God leads to righteousness, and that to sanctification, and that to eternal life.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
6. RECOMMENDATION: “Run your life into the mold of holy precept, as the obedient metal into the sand-cast, Romans 6:17” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)

Romans 7:1, I. Released from the Law; II. The Law and Sin

I. KEY TEXT (Released from the Law): “Or do you not know, brothers–for I am speaking to those who know the law–that the law is binding on a person only as long as he lives? For a married woman is bound by law to her husband while he lives, but if her husband dies she is released from the law of marriage.” (7:1-2)
A. INFERENCE: “Accordingly, she will be called an adulteress if she live with another man while her husband is alive.” (7:3)
1. FINDINGS: “But if her husband dies, she is free from that law, and if she marries another man she is not an adulteress.” (7:3)
2. CRITERIA: “Likewise, my brothers, you also have died to the law through the body of Christ, so that you may belong to another, to him who has been raised from the dead, in order that we may bear fruit for God.” (7:4)
3. CONDITION: “For while we were living in the flesh, our sinful passions, aroused by the law, were at work in our members to bear fruit for death.” (7:5)
4. CAUSE: “But now we are released from the law, having died to that which held us captive, so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit and not in the old way of the written code.” (7:6)
5. EFFECT: “The law, and the greatest efforts of one under the law, still in the flesh, under the power of corrupt principles, cannot set the heart right with regard to the love of God, overcome worldly lusts, or give truth and sincerity in the inward parts, or any thing that comes by the special sanctifying influences of the Holy Spirit. Nothing more than a formal obedience to the outward letter of any precept, can be performed by us, without the renewing, new-creating grace of the new covenant.” (Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary)
6. RECOMMENDATION: “Grace alone. Christ alone. Faith alone. Scripture alone. Glory to God alone.” (per the Reformed Faith)

II. KEY TEXT (The Law and Sin): “What then shall we say? That the law is sin? By no means! Yet if it had not been for the law, I would not have known sin. For I would not have known what it is to covet if the law had not said, ‘You shall not covet.’” (7:7)
A. INFERENCE: “But sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, produced in me all kinds of covetousness. For apart from the law, sin lies dead.” (7:8)
1. FINDINGS: “I was once alive apart from the law, but when the commandment came, sin came alive and I died.” (7:9)
2. CRITERIA: “The very commandment that promised life proved to be death to me.” (7:10)
3. CONDITION: “For sin, seizing an opportunity through the commandment, deceived me and through it killed me.” (7:11)
4. CAUSE: “So the law is holy, and the commandment, is holy and righteous and good.” (7:12)
5. EFFECT: “Did that which is good, then, bring death to me? By no means! It was sin, producing death in me through what is good, in order that sin might be shown to be sin, and through the commandment might become sinful beyond measure. For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am of the flesh, sold under sin. For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. Now if I do what I do not want, I agree with the law, that it is good. So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin that dwells in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself serve the law of God with my mind, but with my flesh I serve the law of sin.” (7:13-25)
6. RECOMMENDATION: “There is no way of coming to that knowledge of sin, which is necessary to repentance, and therefore to peace and pardon, but by trying our hearts and lives by the law.” (Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary)

Romans 8:1, I. Life in the Spirit; II. Heirs with Christ; III. Future Glory; IV. God’s Everlasting Love

I. KEY TEXT (Life in the Spirit): “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death.” (8:1-2)
A. INFERENCE: “For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.” (8:3-4)
1. FINDINGS: “For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.” (8:5-6)
2. CRITERIA: “For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God’s law; indeed, it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.” (8:7-8)
3. CONDITION: “You, however, are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if in fact the Spirit of God dwells in you. Anyone who does not have the Spirit of Christ does not belong to him.” (8:9)
4. CAUSE: “But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness.” (8:10)
5. EFFECT: “If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.” (8:11)
6. RECOMMENDATION: “We are set free to enter into marriage union with the blessed Lord, and He, by His indwelling Spirit, effects in us what our own energies have failed to produce. We are joined to Him that was raised up from the dead, and bring forth fruit unto God.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)

II. KEY TEXT (Heirs with Christ): “So then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh. For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.” (8:12-13)
A. INFERENCE: “For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.” (8:14)
1. FINDINGS: “For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, ‘Abba! Father!’” (8:15)
2. CRITERIA: “The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs–heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.” (8:16-17)
3. CONDITION: “The Spirit here is of course the Holy Spirit, by whom Christ our Lord lives within us. It is passing wonderful that as the life which throbs in the heart beats also in the pulse, so the very life which is in Christ in glory is also in our hearts.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
4. CAUSE: “Our main task is to put aside every barrier to its full expression. This is what the Apostle means by doing to death the practices, stratagems, and lawless promptings of the body, which are ever calling for ease and self-indulgence.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
5. EFFECT: “There is no stage of our earthly pilgrimage at which we can dispense with the power of the Spirit of God for deliverance from the deeds of the body.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
6. RECOMMENDATION: “But there is another most blessed function of the divine Spirit, Romans 8:14. He is willing to lead us, to prompt our actions, to inspire our purposes, and to mold our characters. The more we yield to Him, the deeper becomes our awareness of that filial relationship with God which breathes in the cry, Abba, Father. But note the wonderful climax, Romans 8:17. If we yield to the Holy Spirit, He will conduct us into the divine treasure-house and bid us avail ourselves of the infinite resources which are there stored for our use, not in the next life, but in this.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)

III. KEY TEXT (Future Glory): “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.” (8:18)
A. INFERENCE: “For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.” (8:19-21)
1. FINDINGS: “For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies.” (8:22-23)
2. CRITERIA: “For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.” (8:24-25)
3. CONDITION: “Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself interceded for us with groanings too deep for words. And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.” (8:26-27)
4. CAUSE: “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” (8:28)
5. EFFECT: “For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.” (8:29-30)
6. RECOMMENDATION: “The saints groan for the resurrection of the body and their full admission into the complete enjoyment of redemption. The Spirit also groans for the speedy accomplishment of God’s purposes-the salvation of the lost, the unity of the Church, and the advent of the Father’s kingdom. His yearnings express themselves through the prayers of the saints.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)

IV. KEY TEXT (God’s Everlasting Love): “What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?” (8:31-32)
A. INFERENCE: “Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died–more than that, who was raised–who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.” (8:33-34)
1. FINDINGS: “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, ‘For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.’ No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.” (8:35-37)
2. CRITERIA: “For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (8:38-39)
3. CONDITION: “This is the close of the Apostle’s argument. He has shown that believers are dear to God because they are in Christ; that their every need has been anticipated and provided for; that their guilt has been canceled and provision made for their holy and victorious character; that the Holy Spirit is in them and with them forever; that sin is under their feet and heaven over their heads-what, then, have they to fear?” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
4. CAUSE: “Paul then goes on to show that the love of God is unaffected by even the most extreme changes of our condition-neither death, nor life, Romans 8:38. That it is undiverted from us by any other order of beings, whether angels, principalities, or powers. That it is universally present throughout creation.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
5. EFFECT: “And finally, that this love is in Christ Jesus our Lord. But in order to know and experience this love, we must be united to the Lord Jesus by a living faith. Then we shall be more than conquerors, that is, we shall not only be victorious, but shall get spoil out of the very things that have hurt us.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
6. RECOMMENDATION: Give thanks to God.

Romans 9:1, I. God’s Sovereign Choice; II. Israel’s Unbelief

I. KEY TEXT (God’s Sovereign Choice): “I am speaking the truth in Christ–I am not lying; my conscience bears me witness in the Holy Spirit–that I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, my kinsmen according to the flesh.” (9:1-3)
A. INFERENCE: “They are Israelites, and to them belong the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises. To them belong the patriarchs, and from their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ who is God over all, blessed forever. Amen. But it is not as though the word of God has failed. For not all who are descended from Israel belong to Israel, and not all are children of Abraham because they are his offspring, but ‘Through Isaac shall your offspring be named.’ This means that it is not the children of the flesh who are the children of God, but the children of the promise are counted as offspring.” (9:4-8)
1. FINDINGS: “For this is what the promise said: ‘About this time next year I will return, and Sarah shall have a son.’ And not only so, but also when Rebekah had conceived children by one man, our forefather Isaac, though they were not yet born and had done nothing either good or bad–in order that God’s purpose of election might continue, not because of works but because of him who calls-she was told, ‘The older will serve the younger.’ As it is written, ‘Jacob I loved, but Esau I hated.’” (9:9-13)
2. CRITERIA: “What shall we say then? Is there injustice on God’s part? By no means! For he says to Moses, ‘I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.’ So then it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God, who has mercy. For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, ‘For this very purpose I have raised you up, that I might show my power in you, and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.’” (9:14-17)
3. CONDITION: “So then he has mercy on whomever he wills, and he hardens whomever he wills.” (9:18)
4. CAUSE: “You will say to me then, ‘Why does he still find fault? For who can resist his will? But who are you, O man, to answer back to God? Will what is molded say to its molder, ‘Why have you made me like this?’ Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same lump one vessel for honorable use and another for dishonorable use? What if God, desiring to show his wrath prepared for destruction, in order to make known the riches of his glory for vessels of mercy, which he has prepared beforehand for glory–even us whom he has called, not from the Jews only but also from the Gentiles? As indeed he says in Hosea, ‘Those who were not my people I will call my people, and her who was not beloved I will call beloved. And in the very place where it was said to them, ‘You are not my people,’ there they will be called ‘sons of the living God.’ And Isaiah cries out concerning Israel: ‘Though the number of the sons of Israel be as the sand of the sea, only a remnant of them will be saved, for the Lord will carry out his sentence upon the earth fully and without delay.’” (9:19-28)
5. EFFECT: “And as Isaiah predicted, ‘If the Lord of hosts had not left us offspring, we would have been like Sodom and became like Gomorrah.’” (9:29)
6. RECOMMENDATION: “Jesus is a stone of stumbling to the blind, but all who confide in Him and rest on Him shall not be put to shame. God has laid the foundation of our salvation deep in the waters of death and judgment. In the death of Christ He condemned sin in the flesh, and now we who are built into Him, as a stone is clamped to the foundation, shall rest secure when the last great storms sweep over land and sea.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)

II. KEY TEXT (Israel’s Unbelief): “What shall we say, then? That Gentiles who did not pursue righteousness have attained it, that is, a righteousness that is by faith; but that Israel who pursued a law that would lead to righteousness did not succeed in reaching that law. Why?” (9:30-32)
A. INFERENCE: “Because they did not pursue it by faith, but as if it were based on works. They have stumbled over the stumbling stone, as it is written, . . .” (9:32)
1. FINDINGS: “. . . ‘Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense; and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame.’” (9:33)
2. CRITERIA: “There has been a notable transference of privilege from the Jew to the Gentile believer. This is not due to fickleness on God’s part, but to a fatal defect in the Hebrew people. The vessel that was marred in the potter’s hand suffered not from the clumsiness of the potter, but from some inherent flaw in the clay. The Chosen People stumbled over the law of faith and rejected their Messiah.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
3. CONDITION: “The Gentiles, on the other hand, have exercised faith in Him, and have thereby attained a justifying righteousness. There is no caprice with God, “neither shadow that is cast by turning,” James 1:17. Any apparent change in His dealings is determined by our attitude toward Him.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
4. CAUSE: “Jesus is a stone of stumbling to the blind, but all who confide in Him and rest on Him shall not be put to shame. God has laid the foundation of our salvation deep in the waters of death and judgment.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
5. EFFECT: “In the death of Christ He condemned sin in the flesh, and now we who are built into Him, as a stone is clamped to the foundation, shall rest secure when the last great storms sweep over land and sea.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)
6. RECOMMENDATION: Our anchor holds.

Romans 10:1, I. The Message of Salvation to All

I. KEY TEXT (The Message of Salvation to All): “Brothers, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for them is that they may be saved. For I bear them witness that they have a zeal for God, but not according to knowledge.” (10:1-2)
A. INFERENCE: “For, being ignorant of the righteousness of God, and seeking to establish their own, they did not submit to God’s righteousness.” (10:3)
1. FINDINGS: “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes.” (10:4)
2. CRITERIA: “For Moses writes about the righteousness that is based on the law, that the person who does the commandments shall live by them.” (10:5)
3. CONDITION: “But the righteousness based on faith says, ‘Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’ (that is to bring Christ down) or ‘Who will descend into the abyss?’ (that is to bring Christ up from the dead). But what does it say? ‘The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart’ (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim); because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saves. For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.” (10:6-10)
4. CAUSE: “For the Scripture says, ‘Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.’ For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him.” (10:11-12)
5. EFFECT: “’For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’” How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, ‘How beautiful are the feet of those preach the good news! But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah says, ‘Lord, who has believed what he has heard from us?’ So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ. But I ask, have they not heard? Indeed they have, for ‘Their voice has gone out to all the earth, and their words to the ends of the world.’ But I ask, did Israel not understand? First Moses says, ‘I will make you jealous of those who are not a nation; with a foolish nation I will make you angry.’ Then Isaiah is so bold as to say, ‘I have been found by those who did not seek me; I have shown myself to those who did not ask for me.’ But of Israel he says, ‘All day long I have held out my hands to a disobedient and contrary people.'” (10:13-21)
6. RECOMMENDATION: “All have sinned, and the same Lord is over all, rich to those who call upon Him, of whatever nationality.” (F. B. Meyer Commentary)

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