B3 Teaching about sin 1:18-3:20
C1 The remainder of chapter 1 deals with the downhill course of humanity.
D1 All people know of God’s existence at some point in their life.
D2 The downhill course begins with rejection and suppression of truth.
E1 Truth is reality.
E2 All know truth at some point, but most suppress it.
E3 The Greek word for suppress is κατέχω katéchō. It means
F1 Restrain, hold down, hinder, keep secure, etc.
F2 Truth is something in the open, not secret, not hidden.
F3 Truth is being suppressed.
F4 Robertson’s Word Pictures on this word in our passage writes: ...but wicked men, so to speak, put it in a box and sit on the lid and “hold it down in unrighteousness.” Their evil deeds conceal the open truth of God from men.
F5 John 3:20-21 NLT All who do evil hate the light and refuse to go near it for fear their sins will be exposed. 21 But those who do what is right come to the light so others can see that they are doing what God wants.
E4 God cannot lie. It is not a trait of His character. He cannot lie. Hebrews 6:18 NET so that we who have found refuge in him may find strong encouragement to hold fast to the hope set before us through two unchangeable things, since it is impossible for God to lie
D3 Rejecting and suppressing truth has a consequence
E1 Imagination, that is thoughts not based on reality, becomes reality.
E2 People who reject and suppress truth then worship a different god, an idol, or perhaps only themselves.
E3 Romans 1:21-23 NLT Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn't worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. As a result, their minds became dark and confused. 22 Claiming to be wise, they instead became utter fools. 23 And instead of worshiping the glorious, ever-living God, they worshiped idols made to look like mere people and birds and animals and reptiles.
E4 If truth is rejected, deception is the result. In the first days of the Tribulation, it is prophesied that the Lawless One (anti-Christ) will easily deceive people because they have rejected truth. Rejection of truth finally leads to being easily deceived. People become easily deceived, because they want to hear something that agrees with their desires. 2 Thessalonians 2:9-12 WEL This [Lawless] one is coming according to the energy of Satan with all lying miracles, signs, and wonders. 10 [He comes] with all unrighteous power to deceive those who perish, because they didn’t receive the love of the truth that they might be saved. 11 For this reason God will send them strong delusion, so that they would believe a lie, 12 And that they might all be judged, who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
D4 They keep rejecting and suppressing truth, so it gets worse, for God punishes sin with allowing their desire for sin. Sinful desires are their first love.
D5 All of God’s categories of law are broken (10 Commandments). Sin comes from our hearts. Mark 7:21-23 NLT For from within, out of a person's heart, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, 22 adultery, greed, wickedness, deceit, lustful desires, envy, slander, pride, and foolishness. 23 All these vile things come from within; they are what defile you.
D6 Finally, many end here: Romans 1:28-32 NLT Since they thought it foolish to acknowledge God, he abandoned them to their foolish thinking and let them do things that should never be done. 29 Their lives became full of every kind of wickedness, sin, greed, hate, envy, murder, quarreling, deception, malicious behavior, and gossip. 30 They are backstabbers, haters of God, insolent, proud, and boastful. They invent new ways of sinning, and they disobey their parents. 31 They refuse to understand, break their promises, are heartless, and have no mercy. 32 They know God's justice requires that those who do these things deserve to die, yet they do them anyway. Worse yet, they encourage others to do them, too.
D7 Then they die: Hebrew 9:27 PickNT Also, inasmuch as men are destined to die but once, after which the judgment
D8 Please, do not come to the end of your life in this predicament.
C2 Chapter 2 deals with
D1 God’s judgment against sin.
E1 If I break the law, I must be punished.
E2 If I break God’s law, I must be punished. God is King of the Universe.
E3 Romans 2:6-8 NLT He will judge everyone according to what they have done. 7 He will give eternal life to those who keep on doing good, seeking after the glory and honor and immortality that God offers. 8 But he will pour out his anger and wrath on those who live for themselves, who refuse to obey the truth and instead live lives of wickedness.
D2 The Jews felt they were special and in the Kingdom of God, but they are sinners, too. They need a savior. They need to believe and trust in Jesus. Romans 2:28-29 NLT For you are not a true Jew just because you were born of Jewish parents or because you have gone through the ceremony of circumcision. 29 No, a true Jew is one whose heart is right with God. And true circumcision is not merely obeying the letter of the law; rather, it is a change of heart produced by God's Spirit. And a person with a changed heart seeks praise from God, not from people.
C3 Chapter 3
D1 God is faithful.
E1 The Jews knew God’s law because they had God’s message, thus their sins are worse than the ignorant heathen.
E2 Obeying the law outwardly is not enough to please God.
E3 The Jews need to believe in their Messiah, just as all people must.
D2 All people are sinners. All people are hopelessly addicted to sin. 2 Peter 2:19 NLT They promise freedom, but they themselves are slaves of sin and corruption. For you are a slave to whatever controls you.
D3 No one seeks for God. No one is able to seek for God. If God did not initiate salvation, no one would ever be forgiven. Romans 3:21-22 NLT But now God has shown us a way to be made right with him without keeping the requirements of the law, as was promised in the writings of Moses and the prophets long ago. 22 We are made right with God by placing our faith in Jesus Christ. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are.
Romans 3:23-26, 28 NLT For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God's glorious standard. 24 Yet God, with undeserved kindness, declares that we are righteous. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins. 25 For God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin. People are made right with God when they believe that Jesus sacrificed his life, shedding his blood. This sacrifice shows that God was being fair when he held back and did not punish those who sinned in times past, 26 for he was looking ahead and including them in what he would do in this present time. God did this to demonstrate his righteousness, for he himself is fair and just, and he declares sinners to be right in his sight when they believe in Jesus. ... 28 So we are made right with God through faith and not by obeying the law.