Romans 3

Romans 3 with discount Valentine's Day chocolate and a glass of water

Today’s Passage: Romans 3
Today’s Chocolate: Palmer’s Cookies & Cream Heart Chocolate

Ah, we’ve reached the “May it never be” part of Romans. Every time you turn around, Paul is asking a rhetorical question, then answering himself: “May it never be! Rather, this other thing.” He seems to be anticipating arguments, but to be honest, I can’t imagine any sane human making these objections. Why would a human’s unfaithfulness nullify the faithfulness of God? Why would a person do evil in order that good may come, when they could be doing good that good may come? As the chapter opens, it appears that Paul is addressing the question of what good it is to be a Jew, if Jews and Gentiles alike have failed to keep God’s Law as revealed to the Jews, but then he starts going all over the place and I can’t follow his line of thinking.

Especially here, in verses 5-6, where he asks:

5 …The God who inflicts wrath is not unrighteous, is He? (I am speaking in human terms.) 6 May it never be! For otherwise, how will God judge the world?

The argument seems downright circular to me. “How do we know that God is not unrighteousness? Well, if he were, he couldn’t righteously judge the world, which he does. Q.E.D..” Maybe I’m missing something in Paul’s logic, or perhaps if I better understood the presuppositions of his audience, I might have a better handle on this, but I don’t. So maybe you can help me out.

I haven’t even said anything about the latter half of the chapter, but that’s because after Paul quotes Psalm 14 in verses 10-18, I can suddenly follow his writing.

I stopped by Kroger this morning, and the post-Valentine’s discounts were still going strong. Today’s chocolate is Palmer’s cookies and cream hearts, and tomorrow I will have another, different chocolate.

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2 thoughts on “Romans 3

  1. I am curious what translation you are reading. I looked at it in my NIV84 and in the ESV and it seems a little clearer to me.

    But if our unrighteousness serves to show the righteousness of God, what shall we say? That God is unrighteous to inflict wrath on us? (I speak in a human way.) By no means! For then how could God judge the world? But if through my lie God’s truth abounds to his glory, why am I still being condemned as a sinner? And why not do evil that good may come?—as some people slanderously charge us with saying. Their condemnation is just.
    Romans 3:5-8 ESV
    http://bible.com/59/rom.3.5-8.ESV

    Is this clearer?

    Like

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