Some Pre-post Encouragement
Before we get to today’s post, I just want to offer encouragement. If you don’t want any encouragement, then just skip to the post at the heading below. We’ve been at this reading plan for just over five weeks. We’ve read two books. If you’re like me, it’s easy to drop out about now. Life is happening. We keep meaning to get to our Bible reading, but for some reason we just haven’t made it. Listen, I know for me it’s easy. I get to sit in an office all day, all by myself and do nothing but study the Bible. For you, it’s a bit tougher.
Even though it’s easier for me, I still have a hard time keeping up with it. That’s why I put this book together in the first place. What would always happen to me is I would get a plan going and then miss a day. That meant I had to catch up the next day. Well, then there was more and I didn’t have time to catch up. So I put it off another day. Each day the backlog piled up until it finally seemed insurmountable and I felt like I had failed once again at keeping up with Bible reading. Why bother?
Don’t let that happen to you. This isn’t a race to make sure you read the whole New Testament. This is just a plan to provide you with something to read today. We’re starting a new book in today’s post–Romans. If you got behind in Luke and Acts, don’t drop out thinking you have to catch up. Instead, just pick it back up today in Romans.
Finally, I just want to say thank you for dropping in here and reading. I hope it’s helpful. I invite you to let us know what you’re getting out of the readings.
Thanks. And now for today’s post.
Both Jews and Gentiles Need Jesus
Today’s reading is Romans 1:1-2:29.
Romans 2:17-29 is easily misunderstood. I know for years as I read the passage, I thought Paul was telling the Jews they were a bunch of hypocrites who needed to buck up and start keeping the law God had given them. They boasted in the Law, but they didn’t actually keep it.
That was not Paul’s point. Paul was not encouraging the Jews to keep the Old Law. He was pointing out they couldn’t keep the Old Law. He was not accusing every Jew of being a hypocrite about stealing, adultery or idolatry. He was pointing out that while they taught the Law, every single one of them had violated it–without exception. Since they’d broken the Law, in what could they boast? Their circumcision didn’t help them any. Woohoo, they had kept one precept of the Law! How many others could be found that they had broken?
Paul was driving home that those who had been brought up under the Law, were actually no different from those who were without the Law. They were sinners. They could not boast in their Law because they hadn’t kept it.
Of course, our reading today doesn’t get to the main point. Paul will get to that later in this letter. But we know what it is. Both Jew and Gentile need Jesus. The Gentiles need Jesus because despite the clear evidence in the world around us, we have turned to worship the creature rather than the Creator. The Jews need Jesus because despite having the Law and the oracles of God, they couldn’t keep the Law.
Paul will sum it up in Romans 3:23. All have sinned. Then he’ll drive it home in Romans 3:26 we can all be justified by faith in Jesus.
Are you a Gentile? Are you a Jew? Your ancestry doesn’t matter. You need a Savior to cleanse you of your iniquities and set you free from your sins.
Keep the faith and keep reading.
P.S. What did you get out of today’s reading?