Romans 2:6-11
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who will render to each person according to his deeds: - Romans 2:6


Now here is a merit system we understand. Do good, get rewarded, do bad, get punished. In verse 5 Paul speaks of a "day of wrath". This is what is famously known as judgement day (Matt. 16:27).


10 But you, why do you judge your brother? Or you again, why do you regard your brother with contempt? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God. 11 For it is written,

As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to Me,
And every tongue shall give praise to God.”

12 So then each one of us will give an account of himself to God. - Romans 14:10-12


This will be a day where we give an account of ourselves to God whereas even the thoughts and intentions of our heart are laid bare before Him (Heb. 4:12-13).


Therefore do not go on passing judgment before the time, but wait until the Lord comes who will both bring to light the things hidden in the darkness and disclose the motives of men’s hearts; and then each man’s praise will come to him from God. - 1 Corinthians 4:5


Nothing gets missed, no sin gets overlooked. As we read in verse 3, the judgement of God is inescapable. Do not mistake the patience of God as if God somehow is letting people slip by with evil. Rather, He is patient toward us wishing all to come to repentance (2 Pet. 3:9). Many count the long-suffering of God as weakness or slowness when it's not and therefore are not sobered up by this truth. Exodus 34:7 makes it clear that God will by no means leave the guilty unpunished. Some mistake the patience of God even worse, they see it as approval. They see a lack of punishment and equate it with having approval for the things they do; this is not the case. When judgement day comes, God who is omnipotent and holy will on this day exercise, or carry out, His judgement according to what each individual deserves and His wrath will rightly fall upon them that do evil in His sight (Rom. 2:2). This is a very real day that very really is coming. On this day, people will be judged and recompensed in one of two ways (Matt. 25:46). Paul lays that out for us in the next two verses.


to those who by perseverance in doing good seek for glory and honor and immortality, eternal life; but to those who are selfishly ambitious and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, wrath and indignation. - Romans 2:7-8


 God is slow to anger (Exo. 34:7) He does not want to destroy you. If God only wanted to destroy you then we'd have no verse 7, we'd only have verse 8 written here. While verse 8 shows God is holy and hates sin, verse 7 shows God delights in what is good! (Psalm 33:5, Hosea 6:6, Prov. 11:1, 11:20, 12:22, Jer. 9:24).


24 but let him who boasts boast of this, that he understands and knows Me, that I am the Lord who exercises lovingkindness, justice and righteousness on earth; for I delight in these things,” declares the Lord. - Jeremiah 9:24


God's heart is warmed by exercising lovingkindness, justice, and righteousness. God delights in these things on the earth! When God watches the T.V. show of earth, because there is no evil in His heart He desires no drama. He doesn't want violence, betrayal, or hatred in His favorite T.V. show. Rather, God delights when people do good to one another in unfailing love (Mic. 7:18), when businesses deal honestly with people (Prov. 11:1), with people who are blameless in their walk and perversity is absent (Prov. 11:20), always speaking in truth and dealing faithfully with one another (Prov. 12:22), and things like these are His delight (see also Psa. 33:5, 37:23, Hos. 6:6, Zeph 3:17, 1 Pet. 5:7, Eph. 2:4).


In God's eyes, (if I may give a crude analogy from my fallen nature) our daily commutes would be one where everyone gave preference to one another on the road. When we're driving we'd always give one another plenty of room and we'd be watching as we go down the road to see if there's an opportunity to show love and patience toward another. Someone would put on their blinker and rather than cram together to not yield we'd actually be thinking of the person long before they put on their blinker, ready to yield or perhaps, just leaving room there all the time just in case they need to get over. When someone broke down along side the road everyone in the area would stop and pull over and any share that person's burden (1 Cor. 12:26). People could walk if they wanted to, it would be perfectly safe for them to do so, but nobody would be lacking and therefore forced to walk. Every stop light would be an opportunity for cars next to each other to roll down their windows and truly inquire of one another as to how they are doing. If you saw someone texting while driving your heart would fill with compassion that something has happened in their life that's causing them to have to multitask as they drive (1 Cor. 13:7). When it comes to parking there would be no handicap marked spots. Why? Because every able-bodied person who parked there would have considered that potential need and therefore left the closer spots available. There would be no strategic (double) parking as everyone would be respectable of each other's cars. If someone accidentally backed into your car in the parking lot, they would wait for you to come out, eager to make amends. When you came out you would see the one who desired to make amends surrounded by others who witnessed what happened consoling him and your first thought, as you dropped your groceries, would be to run to them and console them as well. One who happens to be a mechanic already dove underneath while an auto-body tech is telling you how he wants to use this opportunity to make your car even better than it was before. Because everyone deals justly you unwaiveringly know their intents are only good, you feel the same about the young child who is walking toward you carrying the groceries you dropped, while there's a store clerk following him bringing a new carton of eggs for you. Doors wouldn't have locks, parking lots wouldn't have surveillance cameras, the sound of a horn would make our hearts warm as every time we heard it it meant "thank you".


Question: Why does God hate evil?


For You are not a God who takes pleasure in wickedness;
No evil dwells with You. - Psalm 5:4


To declare that the Lord is upright;
He is my rock, and there is no unrighteousness in Him. - Psalm 92:15


This is the message we have heard from Him and announce to you, that God is Light, and in Him there is no darkness at all. - 1 John 1:5


Answer: God hates evil because it's contrary to His nature, not only that, it hinders love, righteousness, and justice, and it harbors separation, hate and hostility, all of which are contrary to God's nature, to what God delights in. God's nature is one of pure holiness, without blemish of any kind (Psalm 89:35, 92:15, Rom. 9:14, 1 John 1:5, John 14:30). And therefore His attitude toward sin comes with strong feelings of disgust, and utter dislike. Isaiah 1:6 describes sin as putrefying sores, in Psalm 38:4 it's a heavy burden, Titus 1:15, 2 Cor. 7:1 it's called defiling filth. A binding debt in Matt. 6:12-15, darkness in 1 John 1:6, and a scarlet stain in Isaiah 1:18.


In my story above, remember the little boy carrying the groceries? He wanted to help but he was neither a mechanic, nor an auto-body technician. When he saw you drop your groceries his heart, having already been moved with compassion, couldn't help but to help you in any way he could. Now imagine if... (I'm sorry for this) imagine if that boy then was struck across the face by his father because his father wanted to leave and that little boy wasn't paying attention to him because he wanted to help you. How does that make you feel? I hope it makes you respond with disgust and utter dislike. It should be no surprise then, that if we being evil feel this way, how much more God who has no darkness at all? God "who will render to each person according to his deeds." Now, if in your indignation you confront that father and that father breaks down weeping, though having difficulty articulating it through the tears he's fully articulating to you that what he did was wrong... how does your heart respond? Perhaps with compassion, maybe with just less indignation. But you see, we're evil by nature. How does God respond? God's heart melts (Luke 18:13-14, Luke 15:20). In our last article we discussed Nathan confronting David. Psalm 51 was specifically written in regards to that very event. In verse 17 he writes:


17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit;
A broken and a contrite heart, O God, You will not despise. - Psalm 51:17


Repentance is a big deal to God! Actually, it's a big deal to everyone in heaven!


I tell you that in the same way, there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who need no repentance. - Luke 15:7 (see also. 15:10).


What is that father never repents? God is patient, as we discussed, He wishes all come to repentance, but what if we never repent? What if the father in my story who stuck his kid in the face never feels remorse but in his own mind finds a way to justify what he's doing and continues along that path? Should God allow such a person to get away with it? Absolutely not, and He doesn't.


There will be tribulation and distress for every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew first and also of the Greek, - Romans 2:9


I used an extreme example of the father striking his compassionate son across the face so our hearts would hopefully be moved. I needed to do so because we are not sensitive to what we, in our fallen nature, would label "lesser sins". However, God, in whom there is no darkness, by contrast, is extremely sensitive to all evil and hates it on all levels. God who is perfectly pure and without blemish perfectly hates sin. God in whom there is no darkness, cannot then tolerate any darkness.


Question: How can God be completely intolerant of sin and yet show tolerance toward us who are sinners?


10 but glory and honor and peace to everyone who does good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. - Romans 2:10


Now on the contrary, because God delights in righteousness, He is ready to bestow glory and honor and peace on everyone who does good. Notice the contrast in verse 7 and 8 and now in 9 and 10. To the person who does good, glory, honor, immortality, peace, equaling eternal life. To the person who does evil, tribulation, distress, wrath and indignation, equaling eternal separation.


These will pay the penalty of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power,- 2 Thessalonians 1:9


Hell is likened here to eternal separation from the presence of the Lord. What then is heaven?


17 for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. - Romans 14:17


Great consequences or great rewards. To those who's records show sin, their sins will be dealt with accordingly. To those who persevere in doing good, unfathomable rewards (1 Cor. 2:9).


11 For there is no partiality with God. - Romans 2:11


God doesn't play favorites. You are just as important to God as anyone else in the whole world. God loves you supremely. People will often ask pastors or men who they consider "closer to God" to pray for them because they feel such a person is favored more by God. This is not so. God will receive you as quickly as he'll receive me. Men love to elevate other men, but God is no respecter of persons. You are important to God and God's gospel is no less (or more) applicable to you than it is to anyone.


34 Opening his mouth, Peter said:

“I most certainly understand now that God is not one to show partiality, 35 but in every nation the man who fears Him and does what is right is welcome to Him. - Acts 10:34-35


 "the Jew first and also of the Greek" (v9 & v10). The Jews were given the oracles (or laws) of God and because they had more revelation they also had more responsibility (Rom. 3:2). The greater the light, the greater the responsibility. The same is true of us. Having knowledge of right and wrong brings a responsibility to be obedient to the truth we know. This applies to us as Christians as well (2 Peter 2:21). As Christians we have the gospel and therefore a call to the "obedience of faith" as Paul mentioned in both his opening and closing verses of Romans.


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