Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Reformation - Romans 3:19-28

Romans 3:19-28
God is the one who is just and the one who justifies; period, end of sentence. So why do we work so hard for what is none of our business? I don’t mean sin, we don’t have to work at disobedience or doubt or self centeredness or disregard for the needs of others or neglect of the planet or any of the ways we are guilty of being less than human. No, sin is all about us, which is why the just one who justifies the creation gone its own way enters the fray to contend with the inevitable consequence of human rebellion, death. Faith does not activate or complete what God has already done in entering the human story. Faith means we enter God’s story in the Christ and stop working for what is already ours because we no longer doubt what is beyond comprehension. We are already justified, made right with God, because God won’t have it any other way, which means we are free to be fully human.

1 comment:

  1. Years ago I watched part of a gay pride parade on TV, and was taken by a Christian protester's sign, which said something like "Homosexuality is an abomination to God. Romans 1:27" I thought to myself as I read that sign that if I had been there my sign - intended for my placard carrying Christian friends - would have read "Keep Reading!" My advice to him would have been "Don't stop at Romans 1. Read the rest of it. Eventually Paul talks about you too." I would have read that sign carrying Christian the words in Paul's epistle leading up to this text: it is written: “There is no one who is righteous, not even one; there is no one who has understanding, there is no one who seeks God. All have turned aside, together they have become worthless; there is no one who shows kindness, there is not even one. Their throats are opened graves; they use their tongues to deceive." Etc., etc., etc. Great stuff I think. Some of my favorite verses in all of Scripture.
    This section points us to the solution - to faith in the one who justifies. I don't think we can get to honest faith, though, until we truly accept that we too have fallen short. When we do that, and when we internalize that we are loved and accepted in spite of our own unrighteousness, it becomes possible to love others as they are, and then also to point them to the solution.