Romans 3:24

To assert that the righteousness of God manifested in Christ was "apart from the Law" relegated the Law to its proper position, as the servant, not the master, of religion. And the apostle's substantiation of his further assertion, that this new method of righteousness was not so entirely unheard of as that its novelty should be a strong prejudice against its truth, but that, on the contrary, the Law itself and the prophets contain intimations of such a Divine manifestation, - this cut the ground entirely from under the feet of objectors jealous of every innovation which could not be justified by an appeal to the sacred writings. And this righteousness through faith recognized Jew and Gentile as alike in their need of a gospel, and their freedom of access thereto.


1. By positive transgression. They "sinned," they have done wrong, and they wander continually from the right way. They are not adjudged criminal merely on the ground of Adam's fall, but they themselves cross the line which separates obedience from disobedience. Scripture, history, and conscience testify to this fact.

2. By defect. They "fall short of the glory of God." Their past behaviour has been blameworthy, and their present condition is far below what was intended when man was formed in God's image, to attain to his likeness. Compare the best of men with the example set by the Saviour of love to God and man, and of conformity to the highest standard discernible. Now, unless perfect, man cannot claim acquittal at the bar of judgment. Perfection is marred if one feature be distorted or one limb be missing or weak. This is not to be taken to signify that all men are equally sinful, that there are no degrees of enormity, and that all are equidistant from the kingdom of God. But it means that, without exception, all fail in the examination which Divine righteousness institutes, though some have more marks than others. Left to themselves, all men would drown in the sea of their iniquity, though some are nearer the surface than their fellows. The misunderstanding of this truth has done grievous harm to tender minds, fretting because they had not the same sense of awful misdoing that has been felt by notorious malefactors. We need not gauge the amount of contrition requisite; it suffices if the heart turn humbly to God for forgiveness. Thus the gospel does not flatter men. Soothing messages may comfort for a while till the awakening comes. Then we realize that it is of no use to be in a richly decorated cabin if the ship is sinking. To reveal the true state is the necessary preliminary to reformation. There is a down-rightness about the gospel assertions which, like the deep probing of the surgeon's lance, wounds in order to thorough healing. Alas! that the disease of sin should so frequently produce lethargy in the sick! they feel no need of a physician! Lax notions of sin lessen our sense of the necessity of an atonement. We fail to discern a rebellion against the government of God, and an offence against the moral universe. We treat it as if it only concerned ourselves and our neighbours. No sprinkling of rose-water can purge away the evil; it can be cleansed only by the blood of the Lamb.


1. Justification comes in every case as a gift, not as a prize discovered or earned. "Being justified freely." Part of the beneficial influence of the gospel is the blow it administers to human notions of desert, and pride is a chief obstacle to enrichment by this gift of God.

2. To all men the kindness of God is the source of their salvation. God first loved and sought the sinner, not contrariwise. His "grace" is the fountain of redemption.

3. The same Divine method of deliverance is employed for all. "Through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus." There is but one way to the Father, whether men walk thereon consciously or unconsciously, in heathen twilight or gospel noontide, in Jewish anticipation or Christian realization. The one atonement can cover all transgression.

4. The same human mode of entrance into the kingdom is open to all, viz. by faith. Weakness, ignorance, degradation, cannot be pleaded as obstacles to salvation. The study of the philosopher is no nearer heaven than the cottage of the artisan. The capacity of trusting is possessed by every man; the remedy is not remote, therefore, from the reach of any of the sin-sick race. - S.R.A.

Being Justified freely by His grace.
I. Its MODE — "freely." It is not a matter of wages, it is a free gift.

II. Its ORIGIN — "His grace." God's free good will inclining Him to sinful man to bestow on him a favour. There is no blind necessity here. We are face to face with a generous inspiration of Divine love.

III. The MEANS. The deliverance wrought in Jesus Christ.

(Prof. Godet.)

I. THE BENEFIT SPOKEN OF — Justification. In this there is —

1. The forgiveness of sins. "The remission of sins."

2. A restoration to God's favour.

3. A treatment of the pardoned and accepted person as righteous.

II. Its ORIGINAL SPRING, or first moving cause, and the free grace of God (Romans 11:6).

1. By God's grace, which excludes all merit.

2. Freely, which excludes all conceit.

III. Its MERITORIOUS OR PROCURING CAUSE. "The redemption that is in Jesus Christ."

IV. THE ORDINATION OF GOD ABOUT IT. He hath "set Christ forth to be a propitiation." The word "set forth" signifies that —

1. God hath purposed in Himself that Christ should be a propitiation for sin (Ephesians 1:9; 1 Peter 1:18-20).

2. God has exhibited and proposed Christ to us to be a propitiation.(1) He set Him forth beforehand, in the promises, types, and prophecies (ver. 21; John 5:46; Acts 10:43).(2) And when the fulness of time was come, God actually exhibited Him in the flesh (Galatians 4:4, 5).(3) Then the great decree broke forth, and the promised Saviour came to take away sin by the sacrifice of Himself.(4) He is now set forth as a propitiation in the clear discoveries which are made of Him in the gospel (1 Peter 1:20; Romans 3:21; Galatians 3:1).(5) And this is proposed to our faith for the remission of our sins and acceptance with God (Romans 1:17).

3. God has preferred Christ as a propitiation to all things else. The sacrifices under the law could not possibly take away sin. God did not take any pleasure in them for that purpose; but in Christ His soul is well pleased, and His offering is of a sweet-smelling savour to God (Ephesians 5:2).

V. THE WAY IN WHICH WE ARE MADE PARTAKERS OF THIS BENEFIT — "through faith in His blood." Conclusion:

1. This gives us a lively view of the great evil of sin and the exceeding riches of God's grace.

2. Here is no room for any to encourage themselves with hopes of pardon and acceptance with God while they go on in sin.

3. Here is a blessed ground of relief for poor convinced sinners who are discouraged with fears, as if there could be no pardon for their sins.

4. Here are the richest consolations and the highest obligations to those who have obtained this blessing.

(J. Guyse, D. D.)

I. WHAT IT IS TO JUSTIFY A SINNER. Justification is a law term taken from courts of judicature, wherein a person is accused, tried, and, after trial, absolved. Thus it is opposed to accusation and condemnation (chap. Romans 8:33, 34; Deuteronomy 25:1). And so it is declared to be a sin to justify the wicked (Proverbs 17:15), not to make them righteous but to pronounce them righteous. Hence it follows that justification —

1. Is not a real but a relative change of the sinner's state.

2. Is an act done and passed in an instant in the court of heaven, as soon as the sinner believes in Christ, and not a work carried on by degrees.


1. That we may the more clearly take up this matter, we must view the process of a sinner's justification.(1) God Himself sits Judge in this process. He gave the law; and as He is the Lawgiver so He is the Judge. And He only can justify authoritatively and irreversibly. For —

(a)He only is the Lawgiver, and He only has power to save or to destroy, and therefore the judgment must be left to Him (James 4:12).

(b)Against Him the crime is committed, and He only can pardon it.(2) The sinner is cited to answer before God's judgment seat by the messengers of God, the ministers of the gospel (Malachi 3:1). Every sermon is a summons put into the sinner's hand to answer for his sin. But, alas! sinners are so secure that they slight the summons and will not appear. Some keep themselves out of the messenger's way; some never read the summons; others tear it in pieces, or affront the messengers (Matthew 22:6). And so they act till Death bring them under his black rod before the tribunal in another world, where there is no access to justification.(3) The Judge sends out other messengers who apprehend the sinner to carry him before the judgment seat. And these are, the spirit of bondage and an awakened conscience (John 16:8, 9; Proverbs 20:27; Jeremiah 2:27). They apprehended Paul, and left him not till he appeared and submitted himself. But some when caught are unruly prisoners, and strive against the Spirit and their own consciences (Acts 7:51); they go no farther with them than they are dragged. They get the mastery at length, and get away to their own ruin; like Cain, Saul, Felix, etc.(4) When at length the prisoner, in chains of guilt, is brought to the bar (Acts 16:29, 30), what fear and sorrow seize him while he sees a just Judge on the throne, a strict law laid before him, and a guilty conscience within!(5) Then the indictment is read, and the sinner is speechless (Romans 3:10-19). And sentence is demanded agreeable to the law (Galatians 3:10).(6) Then the sinner must plead guilty or not. If he were innocent he might plead not guilty, and thereupon he would be justified. But this plea is not for us. For —

(a)It is utterly false (Romans 3:10; Ecclesiastes 7:20; James 3:2).

(b)Falsehood can never bear out before God's judgment seat. There is no want of evidence. Conscience is as a thousand witnesses, and the Judge is omniscient. The sinner then must needs plead guilty.(7) The sinner being convicted is put to it to plead, why the sentence should not pass against him. Shall he plead mercy for mere mercy's sake? Justice interposes that the Judge of all the earth must do right. The truth of God interposes that the word already gone out must be accomplished — That without shedding of blood there is no remission. Whither shall the sinner turn now? Both saints and angels are helpless. So —(8) The despised Mediator, the Advocate at this court, who takes the desperate causes of sinners in hand, offers Himself now, with His perfect righteousness, and all His salvation. The sinner by faith lays hold on Him, renounces all other claims, and betakes himself to His alone merits and suretyship. Now has the sinner a plea that will infallibly bring him off. He pleads, he is guilty indeed; yet he must not die, for Christ has died for him. The law's demands were just, but they are all answered already.(9) Hereupon the judge sustaining the plea passes the sentence of justification on the sinner, according to the everlasting agreement (Isaiah 53:11), who is now set beyond the reach of condemnation (chap. Romans 8:1).

2. This great benefit consists of —(1) The pardon of sin (Acts 13:38, 39). Here I shall show —(a) What pardon is. It is not the taking away the nature of sin; God justifies the stoner, but will never justify his sin. Nor is it the removing of the intrinsic demerit of sin; it still deserves condemnation. Nor is it a simple delay of the punishment; a reprieve is no pardon. There are four things in sin: — Its power, which is broken in regeneration (Romans 6:14); its blot and stain, which is taken away in sanctification (1 Corinthians 6:11); its indwelling, which is removed in glorification (Hebrews 12:23); its guilt. Now pardon is the taking away of guilt, the dreadful obligation to punishment. Pardon cuts the knot whereby guilt ties sin and wrath together, cancels the bond obliging the sinner to pay his debt, and puts him out of the law's reach.(b) Its properties — full (Micah 7:19; Colossians 2:13); free; irrevocable (Romans 11:29).(c) Its names discovering its nature. It is a blotting out of sin (Isaiah 43:25), an allusion to a creditor who, when he discharges a debt, scores it out of his count book; a not imputing of sin (Psalm 32:2), a metaphor from merchants, who, when a rich friend undertakes for one of their poor debtors, charge their accounts no more upon him; a taking of the burden of sin from off the sinner (Psalm 32:1; Hosea 14:2); a washing of him (1 Corinthians 6:11; Psalm 51:2; Isaiah 1:18; 1 John 1:7); a dismissing or remission of sin (Matthew 6:12; Romans 3:25), as the scapegoat bore away the iniquities of the people; the dispelling of a thick cloud (Isaiah 44:22), which pardon, like the shining sun, breaks through and dissolves, or, like a mighty wind, scatters; a casting of sin behind the Lord's back.(Isaiah 38:17); a casting it into the depth of the sea (Micah 7:19); a covering of sin (Psalm 32:1); a not remembering of sin (Jeremiah 31:34).(2) The acceptation of the person as righteous in the sight of God (2 Corinthians 5:2l; Romans 4:6; Romans 5:19). There is a two-fold acceptation which must be carefully distinguished. First, of a man's works as righteous (Galatians 3:12). Works in a full conformity to the law are thus accepted. But since God's judgment is according to truth, He cannot account things to be what really they are not; it is evident that even a believer's works are not righteous in the eye of the law. So that this acceptation has no place in our justification. Secondly, of a man's person as righteous (Ephesians 1:6). This may be done, and is done, to the believer. This is an unspeakable benefit; for thereby —(a) The bar in the way of abounding mercy is taken away, so that the rivers of compassion may flow towards him (Romans 5:1, etc.; Job 33:24, etc.)(b) He is adjudged to eternal life (2 Thessalonians 1:6, 7; Acts 26:18).(c) The accusations of Satan and the clamours of evil conscience are hereby to be stilled (Romans 8:33, 34).

(T. Boston, D. D.)

There may amongst men be a change of state without any change of character. A prisoner may be dismissed from the bar, acquitted of the charge; or he may be convicted, but pardoned; but he may go with all the principles of wickedness as strong as ever within him. His condition is changed, but not his character. But it is never so in God's dealings with men. In every case in which there is justification, sanctification accompanies it. Wherever there is the change of state there is the change of character.

(R. Wardlaw, D. D.)

I. THE REDEMPTION THAT IS IN OR BY CHRIST JESUS. When a prisoner has been made a slave by some barbarous power, a ransom price must be paid. Now, we being, by the fall of Adam, virtually guilty, Justice claimed us as his bond slaves forever unless we could pay a ransom. But we were "bankrupt debtors"; an execution was put into our house; all we had was sold, and we could by no means find a ransom; it was just then that Christ paid the ransom price that we might be delivered from the curse of the law and go free. Note —

1. The multitude He has redeemed, "a multitude that no man can number."

2. This ransom was all paid, and all paid at once. The sacrifice of Calvary was not a part payment. The whole of the demands of the law were paid down there and then. So priceless was the ransom one might have thought that Christ should pay it by installments. Kings' ransoms have sometimes run through years. But our Saviour once for all gave Himself a sacrifice, leaving nothing for Him or us to do.

3. When Christ paid all this ransom He did it all Himself! Simon, the Cyrenian, might bear the cross, but not be nailed to it. Two thieves were with Him there; not righteous men, lest any should have said that their death helped the Saviour. He trod the wine press alone.

4. It was accepted. There have been prices offered which never were accepted, and therefore the slave did not go free. But this was accepted, and the proof of that is —

(1)His resurrection.

(2)His ascension into heaven.

II. THE EFFECT OF THE RANSOM "being justified freely by His grace."

1. What is the meaning of justification? There is no such thing on earth for mortal man, except in one way — i.e., he must be found not guilty. If you find him guilty, you cannot justify him. The Queen may pardon him, but she cannot justify him. It remained for the ransom of Christ to effect that which is an impossibility to earthly tribunals. Now see the way whereby God justifies a sinner. A prisoner has been tried and condemned to death. But suppose that some second party could be introduced who could become that man, he, the righteous man, putting the rebel in his place, and making the rebel a righteous man. We cannot do that in our courts. If I should be committed for a year's imprisonment instead of some wretch who was condemned yesterday, I might take his punishment, but not his guilt. Now, what flesh and blood cannot do, that Jesus by His redemption did. The way whereby God saves a sinner is not by passing over the penalty, but the putting of another person in the rebel's place. The rebel must die. Christ says, "I will be his substitute." God consents to it. No earthly monarch could have power to consent to such a change. But the God of heaven had a right to do as He pleased.

2. Some of the characteristics of this justification.(1) As soon as a repenting sinner is justified, remember, he is justified for all his sins. The moment he believes in Christ, his pardon at once he receives, and his sins are no longer his; they are laid upon the shoulders of Christ, and they are gone.(2) But what is more, he becomes righteous; for in the moment when Christ takes his sins he takes Christ's righteousness.(3) This is irreversible. If Christ has once paid the debt, the debt is paid, and it will never be asked for again; if you are pardoned, you are pardoned once forever.


1. "Freely," because there is no price to be paid for it; "By His grace," because it is not of our deservings. If you bring in any of your deservings, or anything to pay for it, He will not give it. Rowland Hill at a fair noticed the chapmen selling their wares by auction; so he said, "I am going to hold an auction too, to sell wine and milk, without money and without price. My friends over there find a great difficulty to get you up to their price; my difficulty is to bring you down to mine." So it is with men. If I could preach justification to be bought, or to be had by walking a hundred miles, or by some torture, who would not seek it? But when it is offered freely men turn away. But may I not say, "Lord, justify me because I am not so bad as others"; or "because I go to church twice a day"; or "because I mean to be better"? No; it is "by His grace." You insult God by bringing your counterfeit coin to pay for His treasures. What poor ideas men have of the value of Christ's gospel if they think they can buy it! A rich man, when he was dying, thought he could buy a place in heaven by building a row of almshouses. A good man said, "How much are you going to leave?" "Twenty thousand pounds." Said he, "That would not buy enough for your foot to stand on in heaven; for the streets are made of gold there, and therefore of what value can your gold be, it would be accounted nothing of, when the very streets are paved with it?"

2. But how is it to be got? By faith. There is a story told of a captain of a man-of-war whose little boy ran up the mast till at last he got on to the main truck. Then the difficulty was that he was not tall enough to get down from this main truck, reach the mast, and so descend. He was clinging to the main truck with all his might, but in a little time he would fall down on the deck a mangled corpse. The captain shouted, "Boy, the next time the ship lurches, throw yourself into the sea." The poor boy looked down on the sea; it was a long way; he could not bear the idea of throwing himself in. So he clung to the main truck, though there was no doubt that he must soon let go and perish. The father, pointing a gun at him, said, "If you don't throw yourself into the sea, I'll shoot you!" Over went the boy splash into the sea, and out went brawny arms after him, and brought him on deck. Now we, like the boy, are in a position of extraordinary danger. Unfortunately, we have some good works like that main truck, and we cling to them. Christ knows that unless we give them up, we shall be dashed to pieces. He therefore says, "Sinner, let go thine own trust, and drop into the sea of My love." We look down, and say, "Can I be saved by trusting in God? He looks as if He were angry with me, and I could not trust Him." Ah, will not mercy's tender cry persuade you? — "He that believeth shall be saved." Must the weapon of destruction be pointed directly at you? Must you hear the dreadful threat — "He that believeth not shall be damned"? You must let go or perish! That is faith when the sinner lets go his hold, drops down, and so is saved; and the very thing which looks as if it would destroy him is the means of his being saved.

(C. H. Spurgeon.)


1. Negatively is not declaring just —(1) By proof that sins so called were no sins; they are as abominable as ever.(2) By proof that sins in the accusation were never committed; all are proved and confirmed.(3) By proof that such sins do not involve the sinner in guilt and condemnation; wrath is revealed against them to the uttermost.

2. Positively. It is a declaring just, while pardoning, by proof that the necessities arising in the case, for the maintenance of law and exhibition of justice, are satisfactorily met by other means than the culprit's punishment. Pardon is not slovenly and careless mercy, and it does not come through the hushing up or cloaking under of the sinner's sin.


1. It is not purchased by the offender.

2. It is not procured by any means that recompense the Pardoner.

3. It is not constrained in Him by any interested motive; He has no peril from the guilty or gain from the pardoned.

4. It is not begrudged, delayed, sold, or bartered.


1. Not to conciliate Satan or sin.

2. Not to conciliate God in His manner of feeling towards us.

3. Not to give to the Pardoner an equivalent in value for the pardon.

4. But paying down His own life, as that which the Kingly Judge required, ere as a Kingly Father He could permit His willing mercy to flow — a payment which has all the effect, and something of the nature, of a ransom price paid for a lawful captive.


1. In His Divinity, as all in all, and all-sufficient.

2. In His humanity, as one with us in nature, sympathy, and devotion to us.

3. In His spotless purity and innocence, as owing nothing to justice, and having a precious life to give.

4. In His propitiatory work, as being sacrificed, as accepted of God, as exalted where the redemption in Him affects all the Divine counsels and administrations. His propitiation does not appease any ill-will or thirst for vengeance in God, for none existed; it meets those requirements that justice dictated. Thus God is not made propitious in His feelings; but being already propitious in Himself, He can now be propitious in His Kingly actions.


1. That blood is the central thing in the propitiatory work; for the blood is the life, and in it that life was poured forth which was accepted in the place of our forfeited life.

2. That shed blood is the basis of the promise of pardon.

3. Faith that it has been shed, shed for me, and that it does acceptably propitiate, brings to me the pardon for which it provides.


1. To show while He pardons that He was in earnest in His condemnation of sin and sentence of death, and that He has unexceptionable grounds for pardoning sin.

2. To make such exhibition of His justice that sin may not seem to be encouraged or winked at.

3. To justify His seeming leniency in the long suffering and pardon shown towards sinners in the past, before Christ. To declare in all time present and to come, that while He justifies He is just.

(W. Griffiths.)

Through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.
By an image, forceful, because true, Holy Scripture speaks of us "as slaves of sin," "sold under it," "slaves of corruption." We were not under its power only, but under its curse. From that guilt and power of sin we were redeemed, ransomed, purchased; and the ransom which was paid was "the Precious Blood of Christ." It has been said, "Scripture is silent, to whom the ransom was paid, and for what." Scripture says "for what," the forgiveness of sins. "In whom," i.e., in Jesus, "we have redemption through His Blood, the remission of our sins, according to the riches of His grace." It says, "from what." For it says, "Christ purchased us out of the curse of the law." It says to whom when it says, "ye were redeemed by the precious blood of Christ as of a Lamb without blemish and without spot." For sacrifice was offered to God alone.

(E. B. Pusey, D. D.)

setting free, on payment, or by payment of a price. It combines the ideas of liberation and price.

1. In some cases the context suggests the liberation of captives on payment of a ransom. But hero the next verse reminds us that the word was frequently used for those on whom the Mosaic law had a claim, but whom it released for a price or a substitute. E.g., God claimed the firstborn, but waved His claim on payment of five shekels apiece (Exodus 13:13; Numbers 18:15). The word may also be studied in Leviticus 27:27-33; Numbers 3:46-51. Like most words which denote a combination of ideas, it is sometimes used where only one of the ideas is present, viz., liberation (Exodus 6:6; Exodus 15:13, etc.) But in the case of those whom the Mosaic law claimed, liberation was effected only by payment of a price. We therefore inquire whether it is so in this case. The words which follow, and the teaching of Paul and of the entire New Testament, give a decisive answer. We are constantly taught that salvation is by purchase; and that the blood and life of Christ are our ransom (1 Corinthians 6:20; Galatians 3:13; 1 Timothy 2:6; Matthew 20:28; Revelation 5:9).

2. Again, the idea of a price is that of exchange. The price takes the place of what is bought. Therefore, that Christ's life is our ransom is explained and confirmed by the passages which teach that He died in our stead (2 Corinthians 5:21; Galatians 3:13). Paul's words therefore imply that in Christ there is a setting free brought about by someone or something taking our place. By this means believers are justified.

(Prof. J. A. Beet.)

Yonder ermine, hung so carelessly over the proud beauty's shoulder, cost terrible battles with polar ice and hurricane. All choicest things are reckoned the dearest. So is it, too, in heaven's inventories. The universe of God has never witnessed aught to be reckoned in comparison with the redemption of a guilty world. That mighty ransom no such contemptible things as silver and gold could procure. Only by one price could the Church of God be redeemed from hell, and that the precious blood of the Lamb — the Lamb without blemish or spot — the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.

(T. L. Cuyler.)

I can conceive that to the mind of God, looking upon a single soul, and unrolling it as it shall be disclosed through the cycles of eternity, there may come, in the far perspective, such a thought of the magnitude of a single soul, as that in the view of God that soul shall outweigh in importance the sum total of the governments and populations of the globe at any particular period of time. I can understand that God may sound a soul to a depth greater than earth ever had a measure to penetrate, and find reasons enough of sympathy to over-measure all the temporal and earthly interests of mankind. And I can conceive that God should assume to Himself the right to execute His government of love by suffering for a single soul in such a way as quite to set aside the ordinary courses of the secular and human idea of justice. This is to my mind the redemptive idea. I do not believe it is a play between an abstract system of law and a right of mercy. I think that nowhere in the world is there so much law as in redemption, or so much justice as in love.

(H. W. Beecher.)

Is there anything that is comparable with the love and gratitude of the soul that feels himself redeemed from death and destruction? With almost an agony of love, such an one clings to his deliverer. There be those that cling to the minister of Christ who, as an instrument and representative of the Master, has been the means of opening their eyes, and bringing them out of darkness into light. And there is nothing more natural or more noble than this instinctive desire of one that has been saved from ruin to be ever present with his benefactor. And when a soul is brought back from destruction, how natural it is that it should wish, and that it should pray, that it might be with Him by whom it has been rescued!

(H. W. Beecher.)

Paul, Romans
Acquittal, Christ, Credit, Declared, Deliverance, Free, Freely, Gaining, Gift, Grace, Guilt, Justified, Redemption, Righteous, Righteousness, Salvation, Unpurchased
1. The Jews prerogative;
3. which they have not lost;
9. howbeit the law convinces them also of sin;
20. therefore no one is justified by the law;
28. but all, without difference, by faith, only;
31. and yet the law is not abolished.

Dictionary of Bible Themes
Romans 3:24

     2027   Christ, grace and mercy
     6720   redemption
     8106   assurance, nature of

Romans 3:19-24

     6512   salvation, necessity and basis

Romans 3:20-24

     8774   legalism

Romans 3:20-28

     8157   righteousness, as faith

Romans 3:21-24

     5362   justice, believers' lives
     6669   grace, and salvation
     8822   self-justification

Romans 3:21-26

     2072   Christ, righteousness
     2424   gospel, promises
     6661   freedom, and law
     6712   propitiation

Romans 3:21-30

     8022   faith, basis of salvation

Romans 3:22-24

     5308   equality
     6668   grace, and Christ
     6687   mercy, God's

Romans 3:22-26

     6029   sin, forgiveness

Romans 3:23-24

     1315   God, as redeemer
     6730   reinstatement
     8261   generosity, God's

Romans 3:23-25

     6723   redemption, NT

Romans 3:24-25

     1055   God, grace and mercy
     1680   types
     2354   Christ, mission

Romans 3:24-26

     2324   Christ, as Saviour
     6028   sin, deliverance from

Romans 3:24-30

     6678   justification, Christ's work

No Difference
'There is no difference.'--ROMANS iii. 22. The things in which all men are alike are far more important than those in which they differ. The diversities are superficial, the identities are deep as life. Physical processes and wants are the same for everybody. All men, be they kings or beggars, civilised or savage, rich or poor, wise or foolish, cultured or illiterate, breathe the same breath, hunger and thirst, eat and drink, sleep, are smitten by the same diseases, and die at last the same death.
Alexander Maclaren—Romans, Corinthians (To II Corinthians, Chap. V)

The Law Established through Faith
Discourse I "Do we then make void the law through faith? God forbid: Yea, we establish the law." Romans 3:31. 1. St. Paul, having the beginning of this Epistle laid down his general proposition, namely, that "the gospel of Christ is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth;" -- the powerful means, whereby God makes every believer a partaker of present and eternal salvation; -- goes on to show, that there is no other way under heaven whereby men can be saved. He speaks particularly
John Wesley—Sermons on Several Occasions

God Justified, Though Man Believes Not
"For what if some did not believe? Shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect? God forbid: yea, let God be true, and every man a liar; as it is written, That thou mightest be justified in thy sayings, and mightest overcome when thou art judged."--Romans 3:3,4. The seed of Israel had great privileges even before the coming of Christ. God had promised by covenant that they should have those privileges; and they did enjoy them. They had a revelation and a light divine, while all the world
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 38: 1892

Justice Satisfied
WHEN THE SOUL is seriously impressed with the conviction of its guilt, when terror and alarm get hold upon it concerning the inevitable consequences of its sin, the soul is afraid of God. It dreads at that time every attribute of divinity. But most of all the sinner is afraid of God's justice. "Ah," saith he to himself, "God is a just God; and if so, how can he pardon my sins? for my iniquities cry aloud for punishment, and my transgressions demand that his right hand should smite me low. How can
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 5: 1859

"That the Righteousness of the Law Might be Fulfilled in Us. "
Rom. viii. 4.--"That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us." God having a great design to declare unto the world both his justice and mercy towards men, he found out this mean most suitable and proportioned unto it, which is here spoken of in the third verse,--to send his own Son to bear the punishment of sin, that the righteousness of the law might be freely and graciously fulfilled in sinners. And, indeed, it was not imaginable by us, how he could declare both in the salvation
Hugh Binning—The Works of the Rev. Hugh Binning

How Christ is the Way in General, "I am the Way. "
We come now to speak more particularly to the words; and, first, Of his being a way. Our design being to point at the way of use-making of Christ in all our necessities, straits, and difficulties which are in our way to heaven; and particularly to point out the way how believers should make use of Christ in all their particular exigencies; and so live by faith in him, walk in him, grow up in him, advance and march forward toward glory in him. It will not be amiss to speak of this fulness of Christ
John Brown (of Wamphray)—Christ The Way, The Truth, and The Life

How Christ is Made Use of for Justification as a Way.
What Christ hath done to purchase, procure, and bring about our justification before God, is mentioned already, viz. That he stood in the room of sinners, engaging for them as their cautioner, undertaking, and at length paying down the ransom; becoming sin, or a sacrifice for sin, and a curse for them, and so laying down his life a ransom to satisfy divine justice; and this he hath made known in the gospel, calling sinners to an accepting of him as their only Mediator, and to a resting upon him for
John Brown (of Wamphray)—Christ The Way, The Truth, and The Life

The Necessity of Other Preparatory Acts Besides Faith
1. HERETICAL ERRORS AND THE TEACHING OF THE CHURCH.--Martin Luther, to quiet his conscience, evolved the notion that faith alone justifies and that the Catholic doctrine of the necessity of good works is pharisaical and derogatory to the merits of Jesus Christ. This teaching was incorporated into the symbolic books of the Lutherans(811) and adopted by Calvin.(812) It has been called one of the two basic errors of Protestantism. The Tridentine Council solemnly condemns it as follows: "If anyone saith
Joseph Pohle—Grace, Actual and Habitual

"Being justified freely by His grace, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus."--Rom. iii. 24. The Heidelberg Catechism teaches that true conversion consists of these two parts: the dying of the old man, and the rising again of the new. This last should be noticed. The Catechism says not that the new life originates in conversion, but that it arises in conversion. That which arises must exist before. Else how could it arise? This agrees with our statement that regeneration precedes conversion,
Abraham Kuyper—The Work of the Holy Spirit

Certainty of Our Justification.
"Being justified freely by His grace, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus."--Rom. iii. 24. The foregoing illustrations shed unexpected light upon the fact that God justifies the ungodly, and not him who is actually just in himself; and upon the word of Christ: "Now are ye clean through the word which I have spoken unto you." (John xv. 3) They illustrate the significant fact that God does not determine our status according to what we are, but by the status to which He assigns us He determines
Abraham Kuyper—The Work of the Holy Spirit

'Being justified freely by his grace.' Rom 3:34. Q-xxxiii: WHAT IS JUSTIFICATION? A: It is an act of God's free grace, whereby he pardons all our sins, and accepts us as righteous in his sight, only for the righteousness of Christ, imputed to us, and received by faith alone. Justification is the very hinge and pillar of Christianity. An error about justification is dangerous, like a defect in a foundation. Justification by Christ is a spring of the water of life. To have the poison of corrupt doctrine
Thomas Watson—A Body of Divinity

A Great Deal for Me to Read Hast Thou Sent...
1. A great deal for me to read hast thou sent, my dearest brother Consentius: a great deal for me to read: to the which while I am preparing an answer, and am drawn off first by one, then by another, more urgent occupation, the year has measured out its course, and has thrust me into such straits, that I must answer in what sort I may, lest the time for sailing being now favorable, and the bearer desirous to return, I should too long detain him. Having therefore unrolled and read through all that
St. Augustine—Against Lying

Nuremberg Sept. 15, 1530. To the Honorable and Worthy N. , My Favorite Lord and Friend.
Grace and peace in Christ, honorable, worthy and dear Lord and friend. I received your writing with the two questions or queries requesting my response. In the first place, you ask why I, in the 3rd chapter of Romans, translated the words of St. Paul: "Arbitramur hominem iustificari ex fide absque operibus" as "We hold that the human will be justified without the works of the law but only by faith." You also tell me that the Papists are causing a great fuss because St. Paul's text does not contain
Dr. Martin Luther—An Open Letter on Translating

This Conflict None Experience in Themselves, Save Such as War on the Side Of...
7. This conflict none experience in themselves, save such as war on the side of the virtues, and war down the vices: nor doth any thing storm the evil of lust, save the good of Continence. But there are, who, being utterly ignorant of the law of God, account not evil lusts among their enemies, and through wretched blindness being slaves to them, over and above think themselves also blessed, by satisfying them rather than taming them. But whoso through the Law have come to know them, ("For through
St. Augustine—On Continence

V. The conditions of this attainment. 1. A state of entire sanctification can never be attained by an indifferent waiting of God's time. 2. Nor by any works of law, or works of any kind, performed in your own strength, irrespective of the grace of God. By this I do not mean, that, were you disposed to exert your natural powers aright, you could not at once obey the law in the exercise of your natural strength, and continue to do so. But I do mean, that as you are wholly indisposed to use your natural
Charles Grandison Finney—Systematic Theology

Christ is represented in the gospel as sustaining to men three classes of relations. 1. Those which are purely governmental. 2. Those which are purely spiritual. 3. Those which unite both these. We shall at present consider him as Christ our justification. I shall show,-- I. What gospel justification is not. There is scarcely any question in theology that has been encumbered with more injurious and technical mysticism than that of justification. Justification is the pronouncing of one just. It may
Charles Grandison Finney—Systematic Theology

We come now to the consideration of a very important feature of the moral government of God; namely, the atonement. In discussing this subject, I will-- I. Call attention to several well-established principles of government. 1. We have already seen that moral law is not founded in the mere arbitrary will of God or of any other being, but that it has its foundation in the nature and relations of moral agents, that it is that rule of action or of willing which is imposed on them by the law of their
Charles Grandison Finney—Systematic Theology

Its Evidence
In Romans 3:28 the Apostle Paul declared "that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law," and then produces the case of Abraham to prove his assertion. But the Apostle James, from the case of the same Abraham, draws quite another conclusion, saying, "Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only" (James 2:24). This is one of the "contradictions in the Bible" to which infidels appeal in support of their unbelief. But the Christian, however difficult he finds
Arthur W. Pink—The Doctrine of Justification

The Impossibility of Failure.
"But, beloved, we are persuaded better things of you, and things that accompany salvation, though we thus speak: for God is not unrighteous to forget your work and the love which ye showed toward His name, in that ye ministered unto the saints, and still do minister. And we desire that each one of you may show the same diligence unto the fulness of hope even to the end: that ye be not sluggish, but imitators of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises. For when God made promise to
Thomas Charles Edwards—The Expositor's Bible: The Epistle to the Hebrews

What does God require of us, that we may escape his wrath and curse due to us for our sin? Faith in Jesus Christ, repentance unto life, with the diligent use of all the outward means, whereby Christ communicateth to us the benefits of redemption. I begin with the first, faith in Jesus Christ. Whom God has set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood.' Rom 3: 25. The great privilege in the text is, to have Christ for a propitiation; which is not only to free us from God's wrath, but to
Thomas Watson—The Ten Commandments

Christian Behavior
Being the fruits of true Christianity: Teaching husbands, wives, parents, children, masters, servants, etc., how to walk so as to please God. With a word of direction to all backsliders. Advertisement by the Editor This valuable practical treatise, was first published as a pocket volume about the year 1674, soon after the author's final release from his long and dangerous imprisonment. It is evident from the concluding paragraph that he considered his liberty and even his life to be still in a very
John Bunyan—The Works of John Bunyan Volumes 1-3

The Gospel the Power of God
'I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth.'--ROMANS i. 16. To preach the Gospel in Rome had long been the goal of Paul's hopes. He wished to do in the centre of power what he had done in Athens, the home of wisdom; and with superb confidence, not in himself, but in his message, to try conclusions with the strongest thing in the world. He knew its power well, and was not appalled. The danger was an attraction to his chivalrous
Alexander Maclaren—Romans, Corinthians (To II Corinthians, Chap. V)

The Loftiness of God
ISAIAH lvii. 15. For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy, I dwell in the high and holy place; with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones. This is a grand text; one of the grandest in the whole Old Testament; one of those the nearest to the spirit of the New. It is full of Gospel--of good news: but it is not the whole Gospel. It does not tell us the whole character
Charles Kingsley—The Good News of God

The Pharisee and the Publican
Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a Publican. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself; God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this Publican. I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess. And the Publican, standing afar off would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.-- Luke, xviii. 10-13. In the beginning
John Bunyan—The Pharisee And Publican

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