HERO CENTRAL August 7-11 Vacation Bible School

June 16/Romans 2

Verses 1-3 > The Jews certainly would have stood up an applauded Paul’s chastising the Gentiles in Romans 1:18-32. The Jews were supposed to be a light to the Gentile world but instead they were in the dark just as much as the Gentiles. Paul said that they were doing the very same things he had just accused the Gentiles of doing! They figured that they were free from judgment because they were God’s chosen people. The fact that they were chosen made them more responsible before God. They are the ones that should know better. God has the same standards for all of us.

It is easy for us to point fingers and judge. We know the guy who shot all those people in that Orlando night club was a murderer. We certainly would be in the right to condemn him. But as we do let’s stop and think for a minute have we ever been angry at someone? What did Jesus say about anger? He said it was murder! Murder of the heart.

Matthew 5:21–24 (NLT) — 21 “You have heard that our ancestors were told, ‘You must not murder. If you commit murder, you are subject to judgment.’ 22 But I say, if you are even angry with someone, you are subject to judgment! If you call someone an idiot, you are in danger of being brought before the court. And if you curse someone, you are in danger of the fires of hell. 23 “So if you are presenting a sacrifice at the altar in the Temple and you suddenly remember that someone has something against you, 24 leave your sacrifice there at the altar. Go and be reconciled to that person. Then come and offer your sacrifice to God.

1 John 3:15 (NLT) — 15 Anyone who hates another brother or sister is really a murderer at heart. And you know that murderers don’t have eternal life within them.

Anger robs us of fellowship with God and with others. Life is all about relationship with God and others. Anger is sin. Anger may not get you jail time, unless that anger leads you to do something stupid, but it creates in you a prison of its own if you are not free to fellowship with God or others. Deal with it quickly! If we refuse to forgive we destroy the very bridge over which we must walk!

Verses 4-5 > God’s kindness was shown to us when he had Jesus put on the cross for our sins. That show of love and kindness was designed to lead us to repent of our sins and yield our lives in obedience and honor to our loving kind God. But still today people refuse to turn to him.

Verse 6-11 > God is the judge of all of us. He judges according to truth but as it says in these verses, also according to deeds. Those who refuse to turn to God but continue to practice sinning will be condemned to eternal damnation. Those who turn to God and live for him will not be condemned. No one lives a perfect sinless life. As Christians we occasionally stumble. Our works do not save us but they are a good indication where our heart is. Paul is talking here about consistency of character and conduct.

For example: King David committed some terrible sins but the total emphasis of his life was worship and obedience to God. In fact God called him a man after God’s heart.

Acts 13:22 (NLT) — 22 But God removed Saul and replaced him with David, a man about whom God said, ‘I have found David son of Jesse, a man after my own heart. He will do everything I want him to do.’

Judas, the one who betrayed Jesus, confessed his sin and bought a plot of land to be used as a cemetery to bury strangers and yet the total emphasis of his life was disobedience and unbelief.

Acts 1:18–20 (NLT) — 18 (Judas had bought a field with the money he received for his treachery. Falling headfirst there, his body split open, spilling out all his intestines. 19 The news of his death spread to all the people of Jerusalem, and they gave the place the Aramaic name Akeldama, which means “Field of Blood.”) 20 Peter continued, “This was written in the book of Psalms, where it says, ‘Let his home become desolate, with no one living in it.’ It also says, ‘Let someone else take his position.’

True saving faith results in consistently living in obedience to the Lord.

Verses 12-24 > The Jews thought they were pretty special because they possessed the Law of God. Paul quickly wiped the smile off their faces by saying that it wasn’t possessing the Law that counted, what counted was practicing the Law. These people were practicing that old saying, “Do as I say not as I do.” That does not cut it with God. If you know how God wants you to behave you show in your heart if you really do love him by obeying. If we really love our children and want to give them an example to follow we wouldn’t say, “Do as I say not as I do.” That would really dishonor God wouldn’t it?

Verse 24 > This is really the verse that got my attention. I don’t want anyone to be turned off to the Lord because of my sloppy behavior. It is easy to be lax in our behavior around family. We can take them for granted and expect them to overlook some things. The question that I ask myself from time to time is this. If Cleo or Jeremy were not Christians would my behavior cause them to respect God or turn them away? I always let that question guide me.

I believe verse 29 sums up the chapter > Romans 2:29 (NLT) — 29 No, a true Jew is one whose heart is right with God. And true circumcision is not merely obeying the letter of the law; rather, it is a change of heart produced by the Spirit. And a person with a changed heart seeks praise from God, not from people.

Be Inspired Hilltop!

 

 

 

 

Comments

  1. Mark Gundersen says:

    Circumcision is an outward sign that you were in fellowship with God but He looks to see if your heart has been circumcised. Is there an inner change that shows you are different? In Acts the council of Jerusalem decided that Gentile believers did not need to be circumcised but did need to show an attitude that honors God. When Paul and Peter preach they proclaim the Gospel and not the Law. As we continue through Romans proper attitude will continue to be taught.