Romans 2:5-11 - Guilty as Charged
You cannot receive mercy without justice, so to receive God’s grace, you have to first acknowledge your sin.
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Read Romans 2:5-11
5 But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath, when his righteous judgment will be revealed. 6 God “will repay each person according to what they have done.” 7 To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life. 8 But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger. 9 There will be trouble and distress for every human being who does evil: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile; 10 but glory, honor and peace for everyone who does good: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. 11 For God does not show favoritism.
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Heidelberg Catechism Q&A 12
Q. According to God’s righteous judgment
we deserve punishment
both in this world and forever after:
how then can we escape this punishment
and return to God’s favor?
A. God requires that his justice be satisfied.
Therefore the claims of his justice must be paid in full,
either by ourselves or another.
When watching an action or adventure movie, it usually doesn't take long to figure out who the bad guy is. As the movie continues, we see their deeds, and our dislike for them grows. By the end of the movie, we are ready for them to receive their punishment.
We not only want the good guy to win, we want the bad guy to lose, and lose big. There also should be some justice. It is not enough for the bad guy to lose; they also need to end up paying for their crimes.
In this passage, we're reminded that in the drama of life, we're the bad guy... our sin is going to be punished.
But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath, when his righteous judgment will be revealed.
But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the truth and follow evil, there will be wrath and anger.
There is no escaping judgment. Our holy and righteous God must account for our sin; it cannot go unpunished.
Justice is important. Sin needs to be held accountable.
Question & Answer 12 is a transition point in the Heidelberg Catechism. We are going from the section on our guilt and misery, the fact that we are sinners, to the section on God’s grace.
But for you to receive God’s grace, you must understand that you are a sinner. While you may not want to think of yourself as the bad guy, you have sinned against God. And that sin requires justice. It must be held accountable. God requires that his justice be satisfied.
So how do you do that?
This week we are going to begin to dive into satisfying God’s justice. How do we do it? Can we do it? Is there someone else who can do it for us?
The first step in fully understanding God's amazing grace is acknowledging your sinfulness, and that your sin requires justice.
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: Lord Almighty, you are righteous and just.
ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: I am a sinner who has sinned against others and against you. Please forgive me.
ASK GOD FOR WHAT YOU NEED:
Read the New Testament in a year, a chapter a day - Acts 5