Romans 2:1
You therefore have no excuse, you who pass judgment on another. For on whatever grounds you judge the other, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things.
Sermons
The Goodness of GodC.h Irwin Romans 2:1-4
Without ExcuseT.F. Lockyer Romans 2:1-11
CensoriousnessJ. Lyth, D. D.Romans 2:1-16
Jews as Bad as PagansJ. Oswald Dykes, D. D.Romans 2:1-16
Judging OthersT. Robinson, D. D.Romans 2:1-16
Judging OthersJ. Lyth, D. D.Romans 2:1-16
Judgment -- Human and DivineU. R. Thomas.Romans 2:1-16
Man's InexcusablenessT. Robinson, D. D.Romans 2:1-16
The Final Judgment ForeshadowedW. Tyson.Romans 2:1-16
The Judges JudgedC. Simeon, M. A.Romans 2:1-16
The Judgment of GodT. G. Horton.Romans 2:1-16
The Leading Principles Regulating the General JudgmentR.M. Edgar Romans 2:1-16
The Self-Righteous and the Hypocrite Tried and Condemned ByJ. Lyth, D. D.Romans 2:1-16
Unconscious HypocrisyProf. Jowett.Romans 2:1-16


The great object of St. Paul, in these opening chapters of Romans, is to show the world's need of a Saviour. In the first chapter he has shown the inexcusableness of the heathen, and their fallen and lost condition. But he remembers that he is writing to Jews and Jewish Christians at Rome as well as to Gentiles. He knows well the human heart. He can imagine some of his Jewish readers saying to himself, "Yes, indeed; those heathen are certainly without excuse." But St. Paul does not allow him to cherish this complacent spirit of self-righteousness very long. He seeks to bring home the truth to himself. "Therefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest: for wherein thou condemnest another, thou judgest also thyself; for thou that judgest doest the same things" (ver. 1). As if he said, "It is quite true that the heathen are inexcusable. So are you. It is quite true that they have not lived up to the light they got. But have you lived up to the light you have got? Have you not come short of the Law of Moses just as much as they came short of the law of nature?" Thus the Divine Word ever seeks to turn us in upon ourselves. Thus it puts its searching questions, and lays down its searching tests. The Gentile is guilty; so is the Jew. The Jew needs repentance as well as the Gentile. It is this, as we have seen above, that makes the gospel a message for every man. It comes to our fallen humanity everywhere, and, with its message of the goodness and mercy of God, seeks to win us from the paths of sin and death to the way that leadeth to everlasting life. Hence St. Paul emphasizes here the goodness of God.

I. THE GOODNESS OF GOD, AND HOW IT IS SHOWN. The goodness of God is no new idea. It is as old as the rainbow, as old as the seasons, as old as the sunshine. So strong and deep is the conviction of the human heart about the goodness of the Supreme Being, that when our Anglo-Saxon forefathers were framing words to express their ideas, the word they chose to describe the Almighty was this very word "God," which simply means "The Good," "The Good One." So even in that early age he was regarded as the personification of goodness. Let us consider how God's goodness is shown to us. Think of what temporal blessings he bestows upon us. Think of his goodness to our souls. He has not left us, here on earth, to wander in the dark places of sin and sorrow, of uncertainty and despair. He has not left us, alone and helpless, to meet the king of terrors, and to step out from the darkness of a hopeless life into the darkness of an unavoidable eternity. If, on the one hand, he has given us the light of conscience and the moral law to show us our guilt, on the other hand he has given us the light of the gospel, the light of the cross of Jesus, to reveal to us our hope of safety and peace. And, then, how much he has done for each of us personally! How very mercifully God has dealt with us! We are ashamed of many things in our own lives. The memory of them haunts us like an unbidden guest, like a ghost out of the guilty past. Yet God did not cast us away from his presence, nor take his Holy Spirit from us. "He hath not dealt with us after our sins, nor rewarded us according to our iniquities." Surely he must have an inexhaustible store of patience, of compassion, of mercy. Ah, yes! Paul was right when he spoke of "the riches of his goodness and forbearance and long-suffering."

"I know that blessings undeserved
Have marked my erring track;
That wheresoe'er my feet have swerved,
His chastening turned me hack.

"That more and more a providence
Of love is understood,
Making the springs of time and sense
Sweet with eternal good.

"That death seems but a covered way
Which opens into light,
Wherein no blinded child can stray
Beyond the Father's sight.

"That care and trial seem at last,
Through memory's sunset air.
Like mountain-ranges overpast,
In purple distance fair.

"That all the jarring notes of life
Seem blending in a psalm,
And all the angles of its strife
Slow rounding into calm." Yes, "the good hand of God," as the old Hebrews loved to call it, is shown in every circumstance and event of life. "Oh taste and see that the Lord is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him."

II. THE GOODNESS OF GOD, AND HOW IT IS RECEIVED. "Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and long-suffering?" (ver. 4). There are few professing Christians who would admit that the goodness of God is thus received by them. They would not like it to be said that they despise God's goodness. Yet must we not all admit that we do not think as much of God's goodness as we might? We take much of it as a matter of course. We forget that we have no claim on these bounties of God's providence and gifts of his grace, but rather the contrary. How little we praise him compared with what we might! How poor a return we make for his goodness by any effort or service of our lives! How poor are the offerings we make of our wealth and substance for God's cause! What is all this but in a sense to despise God's goodness? It is treating God's goodness with indifference; it is making light of it; it is looking down upon it. How indifferent we are even to Jesus Christ, God's own Son! What an evidence of God's goodness was the coming of Christ into the world - his life, his sufferings, his death I "God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." Yet with what amazing indifference and coolness this message of Divine mercy, this message of redeeming love, is received! How cold and apathetic our hearts are to the love of Jesus! "He came unto his own, and his own received him not." From Jesus, the Crucified One, the King, who stands with outstretched hands waiting to receive and bless us, we turn away our hearts after the world and the things of it. Deaf to his loving voice, we turn our back upon our Saviour. We stretch forth our hands after money, and we say to it, "I will follow thee." We stretch out our hands after pleasure, and we say to it, "I will follow thee." We stretch out our hands after popular applause and the favour of men, and we say to them, "I will follow you." But, alas! how few have the gratitude and the courage to say, "Lord, I will follow thee whithersoever thou goest"!

III. THE GOODNESS OF GOD, AND HOW IT IS MEANT. "The goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance" (ver. 4). God's goodness is intended to lead us to repentance. And what more potent influence could he use than the influence of mercy and of love? What influence is so likely to make us repent of a wrong we have done to any person than the kindness of that person toward us? If you have injured a neighbour or a friend by word or deed, and he meets you with angry words, this only tends to make you more stubborn, more hostile, than before. But if, on the contrary, you see him bear with patience your attacks, your unkind remarks, does it not tend to make you sorry for the wrong you have done him? Or perhaps he heaps coals of fire on your head, and melts down, by deeds of kindness and a foraying spirit, the hardness of your heart. Is it not a picture of how God deals with men? We have sinned. He has berne with us. We have stood condemned as guilty sinners in the presence of a broken Law. He has sent his own Son to redeem, to justify, to save our souls. All this God has done that he might draw our hearts from sin, that by all his overflowing goodness be might lead us to repentance. He puts before us the guilt of sin and the danger of it, the terrors of the judgment and the agony of the lost. But over and above all he puts the message of mercy. "God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." It is this, the story of a heavenly Father's mercy; it is this, the story of a Saviour's love; it is this, the story of the cross, - that has touched the blunted conscience and melted the hardest heart, and won the most hardened sinners to repentance. "Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, for he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon." - C.H.I.









Wherefore thou art inexcusable, O man, whosoever thou art that judgest.
I. BECAUSE —

1. He has a knowledge of his duty.

2. He was created with ability to perform it.

3. He knows the consequences of neglecting it.

4. He condemns others for doing what he does himself.

II. WHAT EVER BE —

1. The nation to which he belongs.

2. The profession he makes.

3. The privileges he enjoys.

4. The position he occupies.

(T. Robinson, D. D.)

The tests of the Jews' pretentious lay to hand in the facts of Jewish life. Did the morals of his countrymen fit them to stand before the righteous tribunal of Eternal Justice? Had they so kept their boasted law as to attain by it to practical righteousness? Let the observation of the Roman world reply. The appeal is a rough and ready one — fit for the occasion. In his own case, Paul's Hebrew life had been outwardly pure. Like a good many of his contemporaries, especially among the Palestinian schools, he could accuse himself of no patent vices. Here, however, he is writing to a community familiar with foreign Jews resident in a city where of all others the basest elements from every land flowed together to make one another worse; and he could appeal to the observation of the Roman Christians whether the Jews of Rome were not as bad in morals as any pagan — nay, whether the very name of Jew had not come to be on Gentile lips a word of opprobrium and reproach. A vagrant life, association with the servile population of great towns, an equivocal position in the eyes of Roman law, social exclusion, the necessity of living by their wits and amassing bullion instead of stable property, these causes were already at work creating that deteriorated type of Hebrew character which has long been fixed in Europe. From independent witnesses we know that the Jews were at that day the gipsy, the usurer, the fortune teller, the pander, and the slave agent of the Roman world; everywhere living on the vices of the heathen whom he despised; one of the most restless, turbulent, and despicable elements in that corrupt society. And this is what has come of Israel's religious privileges and ancestral glories. This was the upshot of the national attempt to attain to the righteousness of God by the works of "the law." An open rupture betwixt profession and performance, between religion and morals; on one side, a faith which was mocked by their life; on the other, a life which was condemned by their faith. For while in morals they were a byword even to the heathens, these same Jews were eaten up with religious self-importance, and looked down on heathens as outcasts and unclean. Arrogant and bigoted zeal for proselytysing went hand in hand, therefore, with personal profligacy. It was nothing to be a cheat or a procurer: it was everything to know the true God, and to be circumcised and to be instructed in the law.

(J. Oswald Dykes, D. D.)

I.ITS PREVALENCE.

II.ITS FOLLY.

III.ITS INEXCUSABLENESS.

(J. Lyth, D. D.)

Hypocrisy is almost always unconscious: it draws the veil over its own evil deeds, while it condemns those of others, not intentionally, but because human nature is strangely gifted with the power of deceiving itself. It is popularly described as "pretending to be one thing, and doing, thinking, or feeling another"; in fact it is very different. Nobody really leads this sort of divided existence. A man does wrong, but he forgets it again; he sees the same fault in another, and condemns it; but no arrow of conscience reaches him, no law of association suggests to him that he has sinned too. Human character is weak and plastic, and soon reforms itself into a deceitful whole. Indignation may be honestly felt at others by men who do the same thing themselves; they may often be said to relieve their own conscience, perhaps even to strengthen the moral sentiments of mankind, by their expression of it. So that hypocrisy, though the worst of sins, is for the most part weakness and self-deception. The Scribes and Pharisees, "hypocrites," regarded their own lives in a very different light from that in which our Lord has pictured them. Their hypocrisy, too, might be described as weakness and self-deception, only heightened and made more intense by the time and country in which they lived. It was the hypocrisy of an age and a state of society — blinder, perhaps, and more fatal in its consequences for this very reason, but less culpable in the individuals who were guilty of it. Those who said, "We have a law, and by it He ought to die," were not without a zeal for God, though seeking to take away Him in whom only the law was fulfilled. But although experience of ourselves and others seems to show that hypocrisy is almost always unconscious, such is not the idea that we ordinarily attach to the word. The reason is —

1. That the strong contrast we observe between the seeming and the reality, between the acts and words of the hypocrite, lead us to speak as though the contrast were present and conscious to himself. We cannot follow the subtle mazes through which he leads himself; we see only the palpable outward effect.

2. The notion that hypocrisy is self-deception or weakness is inadequate to express our abhorrence of it.

3. Our use of language is adapted to the common opinions of mankind, and is incapable of expressing the finer shades of human nature.

(Prof. Jowett.)

I.CONSCIENCE (vers. 1-3).

II.THE MERCY OF GOD (ver. 4).

III.ETERNAL JUSTICE (vers. 5-11).

(J. Lyth, D. D.)

I. THIS SIN IS TO BE AVOIDED, because —

1. We are incapable of judging accurately.

2. We are not invested with the office of judge (Romans 14:4; James 4:12).

3. Judging others is generally the effect of uncharitableness; and —

4. Is expressly forbidden by Christ.

II. IN ORDER TO AVOID THIS SIN —

1. Be slow to judge, and do not condemn without evidence.

2. While different motives are possible, do not ascribe an action to the worst.

3. When there is just ground for doubt, suspend your judgment.

4. When you are obliged to condemn, do it with regret.

5. Listen calmly to apology, and readily admit every explanation.

6. Confound not in one general censure all of a party or sect.

7. View men's actions in the sunshine of charity, not in the shade of moroseness.

(T. Robinson, D. D.)

By doing so a man —

I. DEMONSTRATES HIS OWN GUILT.

1. He knows the law.

2. He violates it.

II. DENIES THE JUSTICE OF GOD.

1. Its equity.

2. Its severity.

III. DESPISES GOD'S MERCY.

1. As if he needed it not.

2. He will not repent.

3. He treasures up wrath.

(J. Lyth, D. D.)

I. TO WHOM THE EXPOSTULATION IS ADDRESSED. The disposition here reproved shows itself in —

1. Worldlings towards —

(1)Each other.

(2)Professing Christians.

2. Religious persons towards —

(1)Each other.

(2)The world.

II. THE ADDRESS ITSELF. Concerning uncharitable persons it shows —

1. How vain their hopes.

2. How aggravated their guilt.

3. How fearful their prospects.Application:

1. Do not occupy yourselves too much about others, but rather take heed to yourselves.

2. Above all things seek to know your need of a Saviour.

(C. Simeon, M. A.)

It had been clearly established against the Gentiles that they were inexcusable, and that there could be no hope of their escape but on the ground of the salvation revealed in the gospel. But of such salvation the Jew stood in equal need. Only to convince him of it a different process was required. Confident that he should escape the just punishment of sin, it was necessary to convince him that the grounds of his expectation were false. He is, therefore, reminded —

I. THAT, IN PRONOUNCING JUDGMENT UPON THE SINS OF OTHERS, HE WAS BUT FORESHADOWING HIS OWN DOOM, for that the judgment of God is always according to truth. It is true that Paul's reasoning would be equally conclusive against Jew or Gentile, but there is no intimation that the latter meted out condemnation only to others; or that he flattered himself that, while they were justly punished, he should escape. But the fond thought of many a Jew was that his interest with the Eternal Judge was too intimate, powerful, and well assured to render it possible that he should be punished as other sinners (Matthew 3:9; John 8:33-44). Now the apostle would have him understand that such a hope was vain. No external connection with the kingdom of God; no attention to the requirements of religious ritual can possibly avail to deliver any man from wrath if it does not avail to save him from his sins (Isaiah 1:11-20). Neither circumcision nor baptism, neither the sacrifices of Judaism nor even the precious blood of Christ, will screen a man from wrath who does not honestly consent to abandon his sinful practices.

II. THAT THE RICHES OF GOD'S GOODNESS WERE INTENDED TO LEAD HIM TO REPENTANCE, and that, therefore, his continued sinfulness would but serve to enhance his guilt.

1. In specifying "the riches of God's goodness," etc., the apostle refers to those aboundings of grace which pertained specially to the Jews. The words of Moses indicate at once their character and purpose (Deuteronomy 4:5-8). The Mosaic institutions, the Abrahamic covenant, the whole of the Old Testament, and the disciplinary dealing of God with the nation, had but this one object, "That they should fear the Lord," etc. (Deuteronomy 10:12). To this end mercy was promised them upon repentance; and, for the like purpose, all gracious instruction, aid, defence, and supply were assured to them. But should they, notwithstanding all this, refuse to repent and to become a holy people, then they should be overtaken by wrath.

2. The purpose and tendency of the goodness of God was to lead them to repentance. But it required the concurrence of their own wills, which, however, they would not render. Their hearts were hard and impenitent. They valued their religious institutions only so far as they supposed that, through their magic influence, the consequences of their sins should never overtake them. Moses had clearly foreseen this abuse of God's goodness, and had strongly warned the people against it (Deuteronomy 29:18-20). Yet, notwithstanding this, the people, from generation to generation, did bless themselves in their hearts, saying, "Peace! peace!" when there was no peace (Jeremiah 23:16, 17). Therefore was sent to them the scathing rebuke (Isaiah 6:9, 10).

III. THAT THE DAY FOR THE REVELATION OF WRATH IS FIXED AND THAT THE DECISIONS SHALL THEN BE IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE STRICTEST EQUITY. This day is not one of probation, in which, along with a revelation of wrath, there is also a revelation of mercy; but one in which, probation being concluded, its lasting results will be disclosed. It is stated —

1. That the judgments of that day shall proceed upon character and works alone. Such is the uniform and consistent doctrine of Scripture. The question of questions will be not to what nation or Church the man belonged; not, "Was he duly circumcised or baptized?" This, too, was the teaching of the Old Testament (Ecclesiastes 8:12, 13; Ecclesiastes 12:14; Proverbs 11:18, 21; Psalm 1:5, 6) and of Christ Himself (Matthew 7:21). If a man despise the goodness of God, and continue in his sins to the end of life, then all his sins, with all their evil influence upon his own character, must go with him to the judgment, and he must bear the punishment of all. But if, softened by the riches of that goodness, he yields to the gracious influence, then, by virtue of the Atonement, his iniquity shall be taken away (Ezekiel 18:21, 22; Matthew 18:3).

2. That the rule of judgment shall be administered without respect of persons. That which is pronounced wicked in a heathen will be pronounced equally wicked in a Jew or a Christian. Nay, more so (Luke 12:47, 48). Therefore, "as many as have sinned without law, shall also perish without law," etc.

3. That the judgment of that day will be so far from opening up a way of escape for the Jew that it will disclose for his portion a "how-much-sorer punishment." And this according to the solemn warning of the Judge Himself (Matthew 11:21-24). His sin is greatest who has sinned against the fullest light and the richest grace. Therefore there must be provided a deeper hell of "tribulation and anguish" for the obdurate Jew than for the impenitent Gentile; but the deepest must needs, on the same principle, be reserved for those who have sinned away the day of Christian light and salvation.

4. The results of the judgment, shall be to the righteous eternal life, i.e., an immortality of supremely blessed existence. To the impenitent and disobedient it shall be a revelation of "indignation and wrath," producing "tribulation and anguish." And as the award shall be final, so too the results shall be ever-enduring (Daniel 12:2; Matthew 25:46; Mark 9:43-48; 2 Thessalonians 1:9). One way there is, but only one, by which sinful men may escape from the terrors of that great day — the way of repentance. Obviously that way of escape was open to the Jew even before the advent of Christ (Ezekiel 18:30), and was assumed by Paul to be available for the sinful Jew still, and also for the sinful Gentile (vers. 26-29).

(W. Tyson.)

I. HUMAN JUDGMENT IS PRONOUNCED BY INCONSISTENT MEN. The men who judge, often those who judge most sternly, are themselves guilty. David and Nathan. The accusers and the woman taken in adultery. In the light of the Sermon on the Mount we are all inconsistent.

II. DIVINE JUDGMENT IS PRONOUNCED BY A PERFECTLY RIGHTEOUS BEING. We notice —

1. The standard by which God judges — truth.

2. The spirit in which God judges. His judgment is —

(1)Long suffering;

(2)Impartial;

(3)Thorough.

3. The character of the Divine Judge is —

(1)An inspiration to those who seek well-doing.

(2)A terror to those who obey unrighteousness.

(U. R. Thomas.)

It is easy for us to see sin in others, and to join in general confessions of sin, in which we seem to include ourselves. But it is very bard to acknowledge it penitently before God. There is, in every man's heart, a subtle element of self-flattery, which leads him to extenuate or deny his own offences, while yet he is very forward to condemn the iniquities of his neighbours. When Haldane read to D'Aubigne a chapter from this Epistle concerning the natural corruption of man, he said, "Now I do, indeed, see it in the Bible." "Yes," replied Haldane, "but do you see it in your heart?" — a home thrust which awakened a sense of sin, and led to his conversion. Thus Paul proceeds here to bring home to every man's conscience the terrible charge advanced against the world at large in the latter part of chap. Romans 1. He knew that many who, while acknowledging the general correctness of his statements, would make an exception of themselves. None would be more ready to do this than the Jews. The apostle therefore approaches them warily, beginning with appeals of a more general character, and then coming gradually down to a direct application of his argument to every self-righteous descendant of Abraham. Let us notice —

I. THOSE WHO EXEMPT AND EXCUSE THEMSELVES FROM THE GENERAL CHARGE OF THE WORLD'S ABOUNDING WICKEDNESS.

1. The Greeks, or Gentiles. Among these were many who could condemn their neighbours most severely, while yet they openly commended themselves. Even Socrates could practise in secret gross sensualities which he inveighed against in public. There were men who were by nature less savage or less treacherous than their fellows; but there were vices of disposition, such as envy, malice, and revenge, in which they freely, if not vauntingly, participated. Then there were men of refinement whose only difference from the licentious mob was in the superior delicacy of their pleasures, the higher artfulness of their hypocrisies, the closer secrecy of their excesses. And have not we also many classes of character, the exact counterpart of those just described — those who have not yet been found out, or are careful to avoid all coarse and flagrant forms of vice; but are selfish, covetous, proud, or vindictive? And are not these dispositions as certainly the manifestations of a corrupt heart as many fouler sins from which they fastidiously shrink? Therefore are they without excuse, for in judging others they condemn themselves.

2. The Jews. Their common delusion was to fancy themselves free from condemnation, merely because they possessed the oracles of God and enjoyed special tokens of the Divine regard. They thus missed the very object of the kindness extended toward them. It was meant to lead them to repentance; but they used it to build up their pride and confirm their obduracy. And have they not also their representatives in the Christian pale? There are many amongst us who pride themselves on their religious advantages without ever improving them to their own salvation. Are you, then, better than the heathen, because you possess the Bible, rest on the Sunday, and attend the sanctuary? Is it enough that you hear the law, without obeying it? The enjoyment of these advantages only heightens your obligation, adds to your responsibility, and may make you at last tenfold more the child of hell than the pagans you despise. "He that knoweth his master's will, and doeth it not, shall be beaten with many stripes."

II. THE FINAL JUDGMENT OF THE WORLD BY JESUS CHRIST.

1. This is a peculiarly gospel disclosure. True, there were premonitions of it amongst the heathen, as there were pre-intimations of it in the Old Testament; but still it was left to Christ and His apostles to develop the doctrine. Here we learn that a day is determined on by God to be devoted to that exclusive business. We need not conceive of a day consisting of twenty-four hours, but rather of a vast period — just as we call the term of gospel grace the day of salvation, or of immortal ages as the day of eternity. Over the affairs of that day shall the Son of Man preside in person. Before His bar all nations must be arraigned. "We must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ," and answer for the things done in the body.

2. Mark its impartiality. "There is no respect of persons with God." No man's case will be prejudiced by his circumstances, and no man will find favour because of the accidents of birth and position. We can conceive of no motives of favouritism in the mind of God. And certainly it will be impossible either to corrupt the Judge with bribes, to pervert Him by flattery, or to overcome Him with threats. The wise will not be saved by his wisdom, nor the strong by his strength, nor the rich by his riches, nor the noble by his rank; youth and beauty will be as powerless as decrepitude and age.

3. Its strict equity. Each must receive according to his deeds, whether good or evil. What, then, is the moral amenability of the extra-Christian world? What the possibility of its salvation? (vers. 12-15.) The heathen world was not left wholly without a knowledge of right and wrong. Also, in highly civilised countries, wise men had been raised up who had carefully sought out the rule of virtue, and thus established many correct principles of moral guidance, which gained the consent of their fellow citizens, and might have served to lead them far on in the path of righteousness. If the light of Christianity is that of the sun, the light of Judaism that of the moon, the rest had at least the light of many stars. The same state of things is still found among unchristian peoples. They have both religious feelings and moral convictions. Thus is the foundation laid for a future judgment, extending to all. All have within or amongst them a law, through the operation of which they are held amenable to their Creator, and are preparing to stand before His judgment bar. And thus may they perish without the law, although, in such a case, their guilt will be less and their doom more endurable than that of men who sin amid all the illumination of Scriptural truth. And so also it is possible for some to be saved, if, with honest purpose, they follow up the light they possess and sincerely seek to please God. Thus may it come to pass that from every heathen land redeemed souls may come and sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of God. Any way, the judgment of the great King will be according to truth and justice. To whom much has been given, from him much will be expected; and only little from him whose advantages have been few.

4. The principle of judgment will be a strict regard to the actions of men. Universally, throughout the Bible, is this doctrine affirmed (Ecclesiastes 12:14; Matthew 25:1; 2 Corinthians 5:10; Revelation 20:13). Yet none will be saved by their works as works, but only as evidential of a right and honest state of will and feeling; a state produced, in all cases, by the influence of the Holy Ghost through such light of truth as may be enjoyed. This principle will not invalidate, but only the more elucidate and confirm, the fundamental arrangement of grace that "the just shall live by faith."

5. The grand bearings of the final judgment upon the destiny of men (vers. 6-10). Two awards, and only two, will result from the proceedings of the great judgment day. The good will be thenceforward and for evermore separated from the evil; the former will enter into a state of absolute enjoyment and peace, while the latter will be consigned to an abode of unmitigated wretchedness and infamy.

(T. G. Horton.)

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