Jim Humphrey Consulting


Vol 5, No 3

Faith in Romans, Part 3: The Gospel of Grace: Salvation for Believers but Judgment for Unbelievers:

Volume 5, Number 4
Created Date: September 29, 2019
Posted Date: September 29, 2019

The last two studies covered Romans 1:1 - 171 Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God,

2 (Which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures,)

3 Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh;

4 And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead:

5 By whom we have received grace and apostleship, for obedience to the faith among all nations, for his name:

6 Among whom are ye also the called of Jesus Christ:

7 To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.

8 First, I thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith is spoken of throughout the whole world.

9 For God is my witness, whom I serve with my spirit in the gospel of his Son, that without ceasing I make mention of you always in my prayers;

10 Making request, if by any means now at length I might have a prosperous journey by the will of God to come unto you.

11 For I long to see you, that I may impart unto you some spiritual gift, to the end ye may be established;

12 That is, that I may be comforted together with you by the mutual faith both of you and me.

13 Now I would not have you ignorant, brethren, that oftentimes I purposed to come unto you, (but was let hitherto,) that I might have some fruit among you also, even as among other Gentiles.

14 I am debtor both to the Greeks, and to the Barbarians; both to the wise, and to the unwise.

15 So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also.

16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.

wherein the word “faith” occurs six times, teaching, among other things, the Gospel of Christ that the Lord Jesus Christ revealed to the Apostle Paul “is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek,” Romans 1:1616 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

. That same Gospel also reveals the righteousness of God throughout history, i.e., from faith to faith: because for anyone at any time in history to be just or righteous before God required faith, Romans 1:1717 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.

. That’s not faith for faith’s sake; that is faith in God’s Word; true faith comes by hearing the Word of God, Romans 10:1717 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

. The word “faith” is not found in the remainder of the first chapter of Romans, nor in the second chapter. Instead, we find the other side of the coin of God’s righteousness, so to speak, and that is God’s wrath against those without faith. “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;” Romans 1:1818 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;

18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;

. The rest of chapter one and through the second chapter, Paul teaches why God is completely right and just to pour out His wrath on faithless, unrighteous mankind, whether Jew or Gentile.

“For, (in the gospel of Christ that reveals God’s righteousness) the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;” Romans 1:18. God’s righteous wrath was revealed in the worldwide flood, which some scholars estimate occurred about 2242 BC, approximately 1760 years after Adam. There had to have been millions of people living at the time, considering how long many of them lived and the fact the gene pool was perfect in the beginning. During that time “the sons of God” married the daughters of men and there were giants in the earth, Genesis 6:1 - 41 And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born unto them,

2 That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they were fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose.

3 And the LORD said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years.

4 There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.

. “And GOD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart. And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.” Genesis 6:55 And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.

- 75 And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.

6 And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.

7 And the LORD said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.

.

Not one person who died in the flood will be able to claim God was unrighteous when they are resurrected to face judgment at the end of time: “Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.” Romans 1:1919 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.

. Romans 1:20 - 3220 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:

21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,

23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.

24 Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves:

25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

26 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:

27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.

28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;

29 Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,

30 Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,

31 Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:

32 Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

goes on to list specifics of what Genesis 6:5 describes as the evil thoughts and wickedness of mankind during those first 1760 years of history. It’s sobering to realize that out of millions, only Noah found grace in the Lord’s eyes, Genesis 6:88 But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD.

; and only he and his family, a total of eight, were saved in the ark from death. “By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith.” Hebrews 11:77 By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith.

. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God, Romans 10:17; Noah “heard” the Word of God and was counted righteous because he believed it and built the ark in obedience of faith.

The demonstration of God’s righteous wrath on the millions who perished in the flood should be a lesson and warning to everyone today because God has promised He will again pour out His wrath on unrighteous mankind during the Great Tribulation. Then, after His Millennial reign, the Lord Jesus Christ will judge every unrighteous man and woman who has ever lived when they are resurrected to face the Great White throne judgment and be sentenced to the Lake of Fire for eternity, Revelation 20:11 - 1511 And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.

12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.

14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

15 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

11 And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.

12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.

13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.

14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

15 And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.

. That judgment will be based on the Gospel revealed to the Apostle Paul, Romans 2:1616 In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel.

. Sad to say, many today reject God’s Word and the lesson of the flood. They have the same mind set as those who died in the flood “Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.” Romans 1:3232 Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

32 Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

. As an example, after the flood, God placed a bow in the clouds as evidence He will never again destroy mankind by a flood, Genesis 9:12 - 1712 And God said, This is the token of the covenant which I make between me and you and every living creature that is with you, for perpetual generations:

13 I do set my bow in the cloud, and it shall be for a token of a covenant between me and the earth.

14 And it shall come to pass, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the bow shall be seen in the cloud:

15 And I will remember my covenant, which is between me and you and every living creature of all flesh; and the waters shall no more become a flood to destroy all flesh.

16 And the bow shall be in the cloud; and I will look upon it, that I may remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is upon the earth.

17 And God said unto Noah, This is the token of the covenant, which I have established between me and all flesh that is upon the earth.

, but many today have made that bow into a banner/ flag advertising the practice of the same wicked behavior for which God condemned those who died in the flood, Romans 1:26 - 2726 For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature:

27 And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.

; Ephesians 4:17 - 1917 This I say therefore, and testify in the Lord, that ye henceforth walk not as other Gentiles walk, in the vanity of their mind,

18 Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart:

19 Who being past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to work all uncleanness with greediness.

.

The last verse of chapter one: “Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them,” Romans 1:32, leads into the first verse of chapter two: “Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things,” Romans 2:1. This refers to all unbelievers throughout history. Since Adam fell, all humans have been hypocritical by nature (the pretense of having virtues, beliefs, principles, etc., that one does not actually possess), including countless millions of sincerely moral, ethical, generous and/or religious people who nevertheless are unsaved. For example; in 2010 the third largest religion in the world was said to be Hinduism, which is generally regarded as the world's oldest organized religion, having evolved in India 3500 years ago, which is about the same time God gave Moses the Law. Then there is Buddhism that came into being about 2600 years ago; about 600 years before Jesus Christ’s advent, with an estimated 520 million adherents. When Paul preached to the Greek philosophers, who spent their time debating everything, while standing among the idols on Mar’s Hill in Athens, Greece, he told them “And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men everywhere to repent: Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.” Acts 17:30 - 3130 And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent:

31 Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.

.

The word “winked” in verse 30 is from the Greek Hupereido (G5137) found only here in the New Testament (NT) meaning “to overlook, take no notice of, not attend to.” This tells us that after the flood, God let mankind’s sinful and hypocritical behavior slide temporarily, so to speak. Scripture does not identify anyone righteous in the years after Noah until God called out Abram from among pagan humanity and renamed him Abraham. God’s purpose for Abraham’s progeny, the Children of Israel, was for them to be a nation of Priests, ministering to the world, Exodus 19:66 And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation. These are the words which thou shalt speak unto the children of Israel.

, at which they failed (but someday will fulfill that mission when God places His Spirit in them). During the years between Abraham and the Apostle Paul, Gentiles (non-Jews) had only one option to be righteous before God and that was to be circumcised and join themselves to Israel in Faith as a proselyte. Paul describes their condition clearly: “Wherefore remember, that ye being in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands; That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world: But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.” Ephesians 2:11 - 1311 Wherefore remember, that ye being in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands;

12 That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world:

13 But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.

.

The Jews were God’s chosen people but for any individual Jew to be righteous before God, he/she had to follow the Law of Moses by faith. Unfortunately, most lacked faith and although they followed the Law, they did so in self-righteousness and so are lost. “For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.” Romans 2:28 - 2928 For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh:

29 But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.

.

When the Lord Jesus Christ revealed the Gospel of His Grace to Paul, Acts 20:2424 But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God.

, God’s dealing with mankind changed. Before that, He dealt with Jews only; since then, anyone, Jew or Gentile, who recognizes they are a sinner, Romans 3:2323 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

, and truly believes Christ died, was buried and rose again for their sin/s are saved to eternal life, 1 Corinthians 15:1 - 41 Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand;

2 By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.

3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;

4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:

. God has made saving faith available to everyone today, for as we just read, Paul has revealed that God “will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead,” Acts 17:3131 Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.

31 Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.

. The Greek word translated “assurance” is “pistis” translated “faith” 239 times in the NT and only 5 times otherwise, the point being that God has given faith (made faith available) to everyone. Paul writes in Romans 2:16, that God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to the Gospel revealed to him (Paul). All who don’t believe are going to face judgment by the Lord Jesus Christ and the second death in the Lake of Fire, Revelation 20:11 - 15. Thus, both our salvation and the judgment of the unrighteous has been validated by the fact God raised Christ from the dead, Acts 17:31.

• “He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.” John 3:3636 He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.

.

• “Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience.” Ephesians 5:66 Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience.

.

• When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory. Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry: For which things' sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience:” Colossians 3:4 - 64 When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.

5 Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry:

6 For which things' sake the wrath of God cometh on the children of disobedience:

.


Jim Humphrey
Vol 5, No 3