18 June 2015
by Philip Layton

Light in the darkness

Paul writes to Gentile Christians about God’s judgement and the Law

Click here to read Romans 2

Discussion Questions

  • Jew and Gentile were saved through Christ and judged by the same measure (vv 9-11).
  • How could Paul’s teaching be applied to our understanding (vv 28, 29)?

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Going Deeper From 'Words of Life'

One of the most disturbing books I’ve ever read is Shake Hands with the Devil by Romeo Dallaire. It documents Dallaire’s mission with the Canadian Armed Forces in Rwanda and the atrocity of the genocide which took place in 1994. More than 800,000 people were murdered – slaughtered – during a three-month period. Upon such horrific reflection he says:

‘When I think about the consequences of the Rwandan genocide, I think first of all those who died an agonizing death from machete wounds inside the hundreds of sweltering churches, chapels and missions where they’d gone to seek God’s protection and ended instead in the arms of Lucifer.’

Sin. Wickedness. Godlessness.

The opening chapters of Romans address the whole aspect of sin and evil. It was rampant then, and still is today. In Paul’s era, Greece and Rome itself were spoken of in terms of glory and grandeur. Yet history provides accounts of vile corruption and depravity from both places. Paul felt he needed to address the notion of blatant sin and wickedness – for it was, and is, deliberate rebellion against God.

We don’t like reading or speaking about God’s wrath in response, but when we read about accounts such as the genocide in Rwanda we can begin to understand why this is such an important part of who God is. Sin is ugly; wicked. Sin is no joke. We’re not to dabble in it or play with it in any way. For when we choose to sin, we shake hands with the devil.

The extraordinary good news is this: God’s grace provides for even the most guilty of sinners! When we come clean before Almighty God, asking for forgiveness, wanting to do good – for his sake – God sees our sins as already judged, nailed to the Saviour’s cross!

Beverly Ivany

Tags: Romans