Daily Reading: January 11th

#DailyDevotion You Have No Personal Claim On God. We All Are Under Sin.

January 11th

Read Rom 3:1–18

Rom 3:5-12  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.)  (6)  By no means! For then how could God judge the world?  (7)  But if through my lie God’s truth abounds to his glory, why am I still being condemned as a sinner?  (8)  And why not do evil that good may come?–as some people slanderously charge us with saying. Their condemnation is just.  (9)  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,  (10)  as it is written: “None is righteous, no, not one;  (11)  no one understands; no one seeks for God.  (12)  All have turned aside; together they have become worthless; no one does good, not even one.”


Verses 5-8 are very often unbelievers’ or ignorant people’s response to the gospel and the justice of God.  While it is true God does transform evil into good.  It is true that God works all things out for good for those who love him and who have been called according to his purpose (Rom. 8), that does not mean we are left without responsibility for our actions or lack of action in this world.  It does not mean there is no wrath of God left for the world.


It is true that God is reconciled to the World through the blood of Christ.  But the World refuses to be reconciled to God.  So the wrath of God remains on it.  It refuses his grace, mercy, forgiveness and peace.  God is also just when he judges the world because frankly he is God we are not.  He is the creator and we are his creation.  If we don’t like it, there isn’t a whole lot we can do about it.


But what St. Paul is trying to do here ultimately in these verses is to show our helplessness to sin, death and the power of the devil.  He is trying to strip away whatever crutches we may have, any latent or not so latent pride so we may realize we have no claim on God.  His conclusion is damning.  There is no one righteous.  There is no one good.  No one understands God or his glory.  No one seeks the true God.  Everyone is condemned.  No one can say they deserve eternal and deserve to escape the wrath of God.  This means you!


The good news is the rest of Romans goes on to show the mercy, kindness and forgiveness of God towards all us undeserving sinners in Christ Jesus.  The universal condemnation moves towards a universal salvation for all who would believe and receive the gift of eternal life in Christ Jesus.  It is refused to no one.


Lord Jesus Christ, help us to see our sinfulness that we might see the glory of your salvation for all mankind, in particularly for us.  Amen.

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