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Romans chapter 9

Bible Study on the Epistle to the Romans

ROMANS 1:16-23     This section covers the thesis statement for the book of Romans in vv16-17, where the Gospel is the Power of God for the salvation (from the Wrath of God [v18]) of everyone who has received the Righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ and His faithful work on the cross.

ROMANS 1:24-32     Finishing up chapter 1 of Romans, we see the full corruption of sin under God's wrath. The final state of humanity is described in v32: "For although [we] know (very well) God's Righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, [we] not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them."

ROMANS 2:1-16     Romans chapter 2 begins by addressing the self-righteous person who doesn't see themselves in chapter 1, but the Apostle Paul indicts all human beings under the condemnation of God, storing up wrath for themselves on the Day of Judgment.

ROMANS 2:17-29     Having charged Gentiles as sinners under wrath in chapter 1 and the self-righteous person under the same condemnation in the first half of chapter 2, now the Apostle Paul zeroes in on the Jewish person who rests upon the Law and boasts in knowing the one true and living God, demonstrating that Jewish people too are sinners under the wrath of God... for a true Jew is one who has a circumcised heart.

ROMANS 3:1-8     Having charged all humanity as sinful, under the holy wrath and Righteous condemnation of God, the Apostle Paul anticipates 3 objections that could be brought against what he is saying: 1 What's the point of being a Jew? 2 What's the point of being faithful? and 3 What's the point of being good?

ROMANS 3:9-20     The Apostle Paul now summarizes everything he has been saying up until this point, that Jews and Gentiles alike are all under sin. Then he seals this verdict with quotations from the Holy Scriptures to show that there is no one Righteous, not even one, no one who does good... there is no fear of God before our eyes. The perfect Law cannot save, in that we cannot meet its perfect standard and so be declared Righteous in the eyes of God. Instead the Law exposes our sin and makes us keenly aware of our imperfection.

ROMANS 3:21-31     In this passage, the Apostle Paul unveils God's great solution to our great problem of sin. The Law exposes our wickedness, that we fall far short of God's glory, and so are under God's just wrath for our sin. But apart from the Law, God has made manifest His Righteousness through the faithful obedience of Christ Jesus on the cross, which redeems all those who put faith in Him, propitiating the wrathful condemnation of God that was hanging over them.

ROMANS 4:1-12     Having laid the foundation of the Gospel in chapters 1-3, Paul now turns to consider how faith can be the mechanism by which God accredits Righteousness to a person, and Paul holds up Abraham as the original example, whereby Abraham's faith in the promise-keeping God is credited to him as Righteousness in Genesis 15:6.

ROMANS 4:13-25     Paul continues his argument in chapter 4 that the object of Abraham's faith was the God who raises the dead and calls into existence things that do not exist. The former corresponds to our faith in Christ, while the latter corresponds to Abraham and Sarah having a son of promise (Isaac) in their extreme old age.

ROMANS 5:1-11     In this passage, Paul talks about the peace Christ's death achieved that reconciles the holy God with us His enemies. God demonstrates His love through Christ's death for undeserving, ungodly sinners.

ROMANS 5:12-21     Having talked about the means of justification in ch4 (faith) and the basis of justification in ch5a (Christ's sacrificial death), now the Apostle Paul turns to the application of justification in ch5b. For just as Adam was the federal head of humanity whose original transgression subjected all his descendants to sin and death, Christ is the federal head of His people whose Righteous act of obedience on the cross brings grace and Life for His spiritual offspring.

ROMANS 6:1-14     In Romans 6, the Apostle Paul addresses the corollary of the Gospel: doesn't it give us licence then to sin? His answer: No, because we have participated in the death of Christ to walk in newness of life in Him. In this passage Paul uses the first of 3 analogies to explain the Christian's relationship to sin (death-->life, slavery-->freedom, bad marriage-->good marriage).

ROMANS 6:15-7:6     The answer continues with 2 more analogies in order to describe the Christian's relationship to sin, first: slavery, that Christians are freemen who have been set free from the tyrannical bondage of sin to serve a new Master; and second: marriage, that Christian's have died to the old-self, and having been freed from the law of marriage, they have now married a new Husband.

ROMANS 7:7-25     Now the Apostle considers how sin springs to life in the flesh, taking advantage of the loophole afford by the Law to bring spiritual death to a person. This creates a bifurcation within the Christian who desires in his or her mind to please God by obeying His Law but struggling with the sin that still resides in the members of the flesh. Only Christ can deliver from this wretched situation.

ROMANS 8:1-4     How can there be no condemnation whatsoever for those who belong to Christ Jesus? It is because the holy Law could not save--it could only condemn, and so God Himself acted by sending His own beloved Son as a sin offering to fulfill the dikaioma (righteous-requirement) of the Law by going to the cross as a perfect sacrifice.

ROMANS 8:5-8     Christians have the responsibility to walk in holiness. The mind pervaded by the flesh is in hostility towards God, does not want to love God or keep His Law in submission to Him--indeed it cannot. In contrast, the mind pervaded by the Spirit desires to please God, leading to life and peace.

ROMANS 8:9-17     The Holy Spirit who dwells within the genuine Christian is the Spirit of Jesus Christ, so that Christ's privilege as the legitimate Son of addressing the Father with full intimacy becomes our privilege as adopted children in right relationship with God.

ROMANS 8:18-27     The suffering that must be endured in this life by God's children will eventually give way to glorious glory. In the meantime, all creation groans as a broken and ruined and corrupted universe, looking forward eagerly for re-creation on the final Day. We too groan in our suffering and hardships, longing for salvation when we receive our glorious resurrected bodies. And meanwhile, the Spirit is our Paraklete (Comforter) who helps us in our weaknesses, groaning transcendently along with us to align our prayers with the will of the Father.

ROMANS 8:28-30     The ultimate Good that God is working all things together for those who love Him is the glorification that Paul has been talking about, when we shall live forever in the very presence of God, in a new creation with eternal, glorious Christ-like bodies. But the plan that God set-in-place beforehand is not some ad hoc idea, but it spans from eternity past to eternity future, beginning with God's active foreknowing, through His predestination and calling to justify His people through Christ, and to bring them ultimately to a glorification so sure, so set-in-stone in the sovereign will of God that it can be put in the past tense as something already accomplished.

ROMANS 8:31-39     If God actually followed through on what He prevented Abraham from doing, namely, the slaying of His One-and-Only precious beloved Son, in order to purchase His elect people, then where are the charges? They've been dropped. Where is the condemnation? It's been propitiated, satisfied and justified. Therefore there is absolutely nothing in all creation that can separate God's elect from His love that is contained in Christ Jesus.

ROMANS 9:1-5     Now in Romans 9, the Apostle Paul begins to address the implicit question left hanging at the end of ch8: If nothing can separate us from the love of God... then what about the Jewish people? Has not God rejected them? And if God's love can be separated from them, then can it not be separated from us as well?

Soli Deo gloria