The Lack Of Righteousness
"Guilty Before God"
Our Text: Romans 1:18–3:20
Last week we ended with Romans 1:17 which says:
"For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith"
This may be the theme of the entire Book of Romans. God reveals His method for our own "righteousness" in this book and it comes by faith.
Faith should mean: We have settled in our own mind that the things of Christ Jesus and God’s Word are true.
2Th 2:13 says But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and [belief of the truth]:
And that truth is the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and if this is not settled in our minds then we need to go back to the altar of God and pray again!
The word "righteousness" is used in one way or another over 50 times in the book of Romans. (some of these ways are the words, righteous, just, justified)
God reveals His Righteousness by:
1.) By punishing "Sin"
2.) By the "Resurrection" of the Lord Jesus Christ
3.) By making "Salvation" available to every sinner.
God is both "just" and the "justifier of the just"
Rom 3:26 To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.
But we can see, God only "justifies" those which believe on Jesus Christ.
The Book of Romans is our study in "type" of God’s courtroom.
Hear ye! Hear ye! Court is now in session.
Rom 1:18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;
Rom 1:19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.
Rom 1:20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:
Rom 1:21 Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
Rom 1:22 Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools,
Rom 1:23 And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.
When we study God’s Word we must apply it to ourselves. We must accept the Book of Romans as truth just like "ALL" God’s Word.
This book describes our own "sin nature". Our Pastor has just recently said that this world we live in looks upon sin as a "Cupcake" instead of the "Poison" that it really is.
Our world is not sweet but it is being poisoned by this serious mistake and it is creeping ever more into the Church.
Joshua told the children of Israel that their sin that they were doing were being done before God destroyed the world by the flood. These things are also being done in our time in this world we live in.
Jos 24:14 Now therefore fear the LORD, and serve him in sincerity and in truth: and put away the gods which your fathers served [on the other side of the flood], and in Egypt; and serve ye the LORD.
We can see that these things are becoming more and more prevalent in our day now and God says:
Mat 24:37 But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.
We are on the verge of seeing this prophesy fulfilled.
God says again:
Rev 3:1 And unto the angel of the church in Sardis write; These things saith he that hath the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars; I know thy works, that thou hast a name that thou livest, and art dead
We can see these same conditions of Sardis as more and more of our Churches have little or no "Spiritual life" remaining in them.
Another sign that is missed is that God’s saints are growing in an eagerness to go home, as our home is not here but in Heaven.
If we apply the book of Romans to ourselves then we can more readily see how to lead others to Jesus in these last days.
"For ALL have sinned and fell short of the glory of God"
The Bible says:
Gal 3:22 But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.
When we accept Our Lord Jesus as our personal Savior, and it is personal, then we accept the Word of God delivered to us. We cannot accept one without the other. The Bible is full of the "love of God" but we must not ever forget, God will deliver His "wrath" to the "unbeliever".
God has appointed a day in which He will "judge" this world:
Act 17:31 Because he hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead.
God will "judge" by the example given to us by Jesus Christ Our Lord.
Jesus is our example to live by:
Joh 13:15 For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you.
1Pe 2:21 For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:
1Pe 2:22 Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth:
1Pe 2:23 Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously:
1Pe 2:24 Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.
We should ask ourselves, How do we match up to the example Christ Jesus gave us in Himself?
When we read the scriptures from Rom 1:27 thru Rom 2 till Rom 3:8, this is not a description of the finally damned but it is a picture of the "Lost of this world".
Paul later says:
1Co 6:9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,
1Co 6:10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.
1Co 6:11 And [such were some of you]: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.
Paul is telling us that there is no sinner outside the reach of His Saving Power. It does not hurt us to look back on occasions to see where we came from as long as we do not tarry on something that God has already forgiven.
What else do these scriptures tell us? God will allow us to travel our own path to destruction. God insist that His Word be made available to all but He will not force His Word on anyone. God gave us all the freewill to choose our own way.
Ecc 7:29 Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought out many inventions.
All freewill, will end at the "White Throne of Judgment"
Rev 20:11 And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.
Rev 20:12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.
God says there will be none saved on that day. Whatever you were, that you will remain.
Rev 22:11 He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still.
There is only one time of "Grace for the Church" and that is the time we live in now!
2Co 6:2 (For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.)
In fact we are in the last days of this time!
1Jn 2:18 Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time.
To be "ungodly" is to totally disregard God!
To be "unrighteous" is to be wicked in our conduct.
To know these things is to Know the "Holy Spirit". (Holy Ghost)
2Th 2:6 [And now ye know what withholdeth that he might be revealed in his time.
2Th 2:7 For the mystery of iniquity doth already work]: only he who now letteth will let, until he be taken out of the way.
We find the "truth" of God in the Book of Romans but not many in this world will agree to what God calls "sin".
There has never been a time in human history that God has not made Himself known. The sad fact is that most of this world has rejected the Word of God and therefore Jehovah God since the days of Adam.
God has revealed Himself through "creation". There are many that try to find some other means of creation but the Word of God has the indisputable facts of "creation" that cannot be denied. It is not "science" that proves the Bible. It is the Bible that proves "science". Until evolution became the gospel of false science, true science was based on facts, which is the definition of "science"!
Psa 19:1 The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.
The first step for man to be wise is to listen and keep the Word of God.
1.) The "fear of the Lord" is the beginning of knowledge but the foolish will not listen.
2.) The "fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom and knowledge of Him is understanding.
3.) The "fear of the Lord" is the instructions of wisdom and our honor comes from being humble in His presence.
4.) The "fear of the Lord" is the strength of Our Salvation.
5.) The "fear of the Lord" is His treasure to us all!
Men are without excuse of admitting there is a Holy God of Truth!
There are many men of their own renown that say our universe is a haphazard place of collision of stellar bodies. God has made the eye of the human to see farther than any thing man-made. When I look up into the heavens I see a thing of beauty. Most every object in orbit, and organized. God is not a God of "Chaos".
There will be a time of "Chaos" but not to the believer. We can read all about it in the Book of Revelation.
Because of God’s Creation that is clearly visible to the eye, not hidden or covered up, not in chaos but in order, man has no excuse, no basis for doubt to deny the existence of God and all mankind knows it.
Psa 33:6 By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth.
Psa 33:7 He gathereth the waters of the sea together as an heap: he layeth up the depth in storehouses.
Psa 33:8 Let all the earth fear the LORD: let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him.
Psa 33:9 For he spake, and it was done; he commanded, and it stood fast.
Every living human being, no matter what they say, knows there is a Creator. BUT man has chosen to refuse this thought and therefore are "godless" and "thankless". Because man cannot free himself from these thoughts, they create "idols" for them selves to worship.
What is the "Heart" in Spiritual terms? It represents the whole inner man, the seat of knowledge, and the seat of man’s feelings.
In our world the Bible explains that these things of the "Heart" have become "dark" and have "lost the light that they had about the true Creator".
Man now wanders blindly in this world and are easily influenced by the things of Satan.
This is exactly the way I was before I met Jesus on His terms!
2Ti 2:26 And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.
There is no recovery except through the Lord Jesus Christ!
Mankind have rejected the "Light of Jesus" in their consciences and abide in their own knowledge thinking they have wisdom, but that wisdom is of this world and not God’s World, which is not on this earth.
Job 28:28 And unto man he said, Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom; and to depart from evil is understanding.
These are the same ones of our day that say (God is not a person, man evolved from monkeys, evil morals are just bad habits, if it feels good do it, go ahead and lust after all you see and make it happen if you can). This is man’s path of wisdom!
Job said it well when he said to depart from these things means we understand that these are all lies!
Solomon wrote to the younger generation but it holds true to all:
Ecc 11:9 Rejoice, O young man, in thy youth; and let thy heart cheer thee in the days of thy youth, and walk in the ways of thine heart, and in the sight of thine eyes: but know thou, that for all these things God will bring thee into judgment.
Ecc 11:10 Therefore remove sorrow from thy heart, and put away evil from thy flesh: for childhood and youth are vanity.
Walking in the things of this world will lead us to vanity which means to nothing.
What did Jesus tell us all:
Joh 15:5 I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.
God gave us the free will to choose to be "Nothing", a "Vain Thing" or to be a "Something" in Christ Jesus.
There will "No Vain Thing" in God’s New heaven! Only the "Somethings" will be there!
Until a man can know his state of "Sin" he will never feel the need for a "Savior".
Preachers and Teachers have soft-pedaled sin, until the "Fear of God" is VANISHING.
These men are employed and used by the "Devil".
God is glorious and self-existing, and "Incorruptibility" is the "Essence" His Being. No One that has "Sin" could ever forgive others of their sin.
Mankind who reject the knowledge of God but still retain the need to worship in their conscience are an insult to the God that created them.
If we as Christians allow "idols" to come between us and God, then we have insulted our Savior and are no better than the lost of this world.
Idols of man were prevalent in Greece.
Idols of animals were prevalent in Egypt.
Both types were found in Rome and still are found in a certain religion.
Idols of Serpent worship are found along with these others worldwide.
Where does your own "Idol" fall in place among these others?
From "idolatry" to "immorality" is just one short step!
Once man has rejected the True God, Our Lord, then he walks on his own path to destruction.
Remember what Satan told Eve:
Gen 3:5 For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and [ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil].
Satan has always wanted to be worshiped as God and we give this worship to him when we place our idols between us and Our Lord God.
The Apostle Paul takes us back to the Exodus of Israel and reminds us:
1Co 10:9 Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents.
One way God reveals His "wrath" is by ABANDONING SINFUL MAN TO THEIR OWN LUSTFUL WAYS.
God withdraws His Holy Spirit of Conviction!
Mankind will then resort to a "depraved mind" and encourage others to join in with them in there sin.
We can see this growing in America every day. Even our own leaders have no morals along with those of the world we live in.
This is the "news" that is brought to our attention every day. Just turn on your T V. Or look on your computer.
There is no confusion to whom Paul addressed this Epistle:
"To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints"
We can only realize one thing in this Epistle and that is that "The Whole World Is Guilty Before God"!
Rom 3:9 What then? are we better than they? No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin;
Rom 3:10 As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:
Rom 3:11 There is none that understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God.
Rom 3:12 They are all gone out of the way, they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.
Rom 3:13 Their throat is an open sepulchre; with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under their lips:
Rom 3:14 Whose mouth is full of cursing and bitterness:
Rom 3:15 Their feet are swift to shed blood:
Rom 3:16 Destruction and misery are in their ways:
Rom 3:17 And the way of peace have they not known:
Rom 3:18 There is no fear of God before their eyes.
Up until verse 9 Paul was making it perfectly clear that if you chose to do some evil thing and some good came out of it, it would not change the character of that evil thing nor take away the guilty of the one that did the evil.
If you robbed a bank and gave all the money to the church and souls were saved because of this money, it would not mean that the one that had robbed the bank would be guilt free of his sin.
God will not allow His Name to be shamed for the furtherance of the Gospel. God cannot become guilty of any wrong toward any being whatever. Even though God condemns a sinner to eternal damnation, God will immediately forgive that same sinner if he accepts the Word of God and repents. That same sinner would then be a useful tool in the hands of his Savior.
God will also not exempt any Jew though they have kept all the laws of Moses nor will He exempt any Baptist, nor Methodist, nor Episcopalian who has not accepted The Lord Jesus Christ.
All mankind are exactly alike in the eyes of God. We are all sinners that deserve death! THE WHOLE WORLD IS GUILTY BEFORE THIS HOLY AND RIGHTEOUS GOD!
Psa 14:1 The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good.
Psa 14:2 The LORD looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, and seek God.
Psa 14:3 They are all gone aside, they are all together become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no, not one.
*****God now speaks 14 horrible things about the "Natural Man":
God speaks first as the "Judge":
*****1.) "There is not one righteous"
Psa 53:1 The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. Corrupt are they, and have done abominable iniquity: there is none that doeth good.
No human being to have ever lived on this earth has ever been "righteous". Adam was "innocent" but not "righteous"!
Most all false religions are based on someone who has declared his own self in favor with God and this cannot be true.
*****2.) in verse 11: "There are none that understand"
This can best be understood by the Words of Jesus.
Mat 13:13 Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.
This phrase is last used by Paul as he instructs the church:
Eph 5:17 Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.
We have the written will of God in our Bible. If we cannot be obedient to God’s "written will" He will not ask us to do anything else!
"In God’s Own Wisdom, the world through it’s own wisdom cannot know God" this is the truth.
*****3.) again in verse 11: "There is none that seek God"
We might say how is this possible?
The Bible says:
1Co 10:20 But I say, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God: and I would not that ye should have fellowship with devils.
When Adam sinned he turn his back on God:
It is God that became the "seeker".
Gen 3:9 And the LORD God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?
Since then the "natural" man has not sought after God.
Our God has become the:
a.) The Seeker
b.) The Convictor
c.) The Persuader.
d.) The Savior.
Through God’s Amazing "Grace", He brings all those that believe unto Himself.
*****4.) In verse 12 we find "They are all gone out of the way"
The Bible says:
Psa 14:3 They are all gone aside, they are all together become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no, not one.
Psa 53:3 Every one of them is gone back: they are altogether become filthy; there is none that doeth good, no, not one.
Isa 53:6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.
The Church is told directly:
Rom 16:17 Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offenses contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.
1Pe 3:11 Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it.
1Pe 3:12 For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil.
We have to realize that in the eyes of God the whole race of man is an awful case.
The world sees mankind as mostly good but some do some bad things.
God sees mankind as all bad even though some may do some good things.
*****5.) again verse 12 we see "They are all unprofitable"
God says the ‘Human race" is useless to Him in bringing man closer to Him.
That word "unprofitable" means "rotten fruit". The Bible says mankind has become "filthy".
Isa 64:6 But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.
These words are harsh but we cannot understand God’s "Grace" until we understand How a Holy God sees mankind.
*****6.) again verse 12 "There are none that practice goodness"
Mankind seeks "Corruption" not holiness.
Mankind seeks "Selfishness" not goodness.
Mankind seeks "Cruelty" not kindness.
We know this is true in the world we live in today. Our own governments are corrupt. The rich are more selfish than ever. The robber and the murderer are treated with respect while the innocent continue to suffer.
We have seen how Our Lord sees us as a "Judge" now let’s see the "Physician":
*****7.)) In verse 13 "Their throat an open sepulchre"
Doctors always look into the throat because it can tell him the state of health. Paul says these throats are open graves of death.
Death represents: decay, moral stench, unhidden but open and unashamed.
Watch the six o’clock news today and see the results.
*****8.) Again in verse 13 "Tongues using deceit"
All the world is being misled by those in power and are taught to believe in false things and a false hope. We know all theses things hold true even today and especially today.
God does not say things are getting better, No, God says things are getting worse:
2Ti 3:13 But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.
*****9.) Again in verse 13 "The poison of Asp under their lips"
The fangs of the viper ordinarily are folded back in it’s upper jaw, but when it strikes those fangs drop down to deliver the poison that is gathered under its lips.
All men are born into this world as sinners, the world does not make us sinners. We all have immoral poison sacks like this in our lips. Even in America people brag about having the freedom to speak whatever words they will regardless who is hurt with those words. We call this freedom!
*****10.) Verse 14 "A mouth full of cursing and bitterness"
All you have to do to prove this is to take a stand for Jesus and the world will open its mouth in cursing and blaspheming.
This world is full of bitterness and those that believe there may be a Heaven find their own way to get their not accepting The Lord Jesus Christ as ‘The Way"!
*****11.) Verse 15 "Feet swift to shed blood"
Isa 59:7 says Their feet run to evil, and they make haste to shed innocent blood: their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity; wasting and destruction are in their paths.
*****12.) We will next see the "All-seeing" God as the Historian: Verse 16: "Destruction and Misery are in their ways"
All we have to do to prove this is to look in archeology of every old city and we will see that one is built on top of the ruins of another. Civilization has not proved that it can survive without destruction.
Those that say so are blind to "World History" and "Blind to present day facts"!
God says the world will resort to the same world before the flood that is also denied.
Luk 17:26 And as it was in the days of Noe, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man.
Luk 17:27 They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all.
Luk 17:28 Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded;
Luk 17:29 But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all.
Luk 17:30 Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed.
The World is "Not" getting better!
Gen 6:11 The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence.
Gen 6:12 And God looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth.
Gen 6:13 And God said unto Noah, The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth.
*****13.) Verse 17 "And the way of peace they have not known"
Isa 59:8 The way of peace they know not; and there is no judgment in their goings: they have made them crooked paths: whosoever goeth therein shall not know peace.
Talk about fulfilled prophecy how can this one be missed.
Without the wisdom of God there can not be world wide peace. The proof is all around us.
*****14.) Verse 18 "There is no fear of God before their eyes"
Psa 36:1 The transgression of the wicked saith within my heart, that there is no fear of God before his eyes.
Psa 36:2 For he flattereth himself in his own eyes, until his iniquity be found to be hateful.
There is no sense of Majesty and Holiness for Jehovah God. There is no sense of Godly Goodness, nor Godly Justice.
There is no Godly Fear in this world except in the believer!
A man once wrote that "Out of the contempt of the Most High God comes all wickedness". No doubt this is true.
Just as a doctor is guilty of a falsehood if he does not tell a patient of a destroying cancer, God would have been guilty if He had made known to us all our "Spiritual Cancer".
Rom 3:19 Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God.
Rom 3:20 Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: [for by the law is the knowledge of sin].
It is extremely important for every Christian to study their Bible but also to attend a Bible believing church. Many names, doctrines, and ordinances of the Bible have been falsely explained and it is harder to dislodge this falsehood than to disciple a babe in Christ.
1.) The Church is not to observe any of the Jewish rituals or feast days or any other Jewish doctrine.
2.) We do not see in the Bible where Christmas, Easter or Lent are celebrated by the Church.
We might ask if keeping God’s Law is not for my own righteousness then why is it in the Word of God? Why Did He Give It?
We then have to ask ourselves these questions and seek the answer in God’s Word:
A.) To what nation did God give the Law?
B.) Why did God give the Law?
C.) What is the ministry of the Law?
D.) How was the Law set aside for something new?
E.) What does "Under Grace" mean?
F.) How can we "Walk in the Spirit"?
G.) How can those that are not under the Law be "righteous"?
We must find three things as evidence:
a.) The broken Laws of God can only condemn!
b.) Even if we began today to obey God’s Law it would not make up for our disobedient past.
c.) The keeping of the Law is NOT God’s way to Salvation or of any Blessing.
The one thing that stands out is that only the knowledge of "SIN" comes through the Law.
This proves 3 things:
1.) The Law reveals what God approved in man and what God will not approve and forbids.
2.) The Law requires a man to be obedient.
3.) The Law condemns any that are disobedient.
These are some things we will seek answers for in this Book of Romans.