Those Who Judge Will Be Judged
Therefore you have no excuse, O man, every one of you who judges. For in passing judgment on another you condemn yourself, because you, the judge, practice the very same things. – Romans 2:1
Only God has the right to judge. We mere mortals don't have that right. And if we take that right upon ourselves, we are playing God. And by playing God, we open ourselves up to be judged by God.
Do you suppose, O man–you who judge those who practice such things and yet do them yourself–that you will escape the judgment of God? – Romans 2:3
Furthermore, by judging others, we are being hypocrites. Since everybody is a sinner, that means sinners are judging sinners. Because we have sin, we don't have the right to judge others that sin for their sin, even if it's a different sin. For no one sin is worse than another sin–in both scenarios, we miss the mark. Anything less than living a perfect life results in judgment. That's why we need Jesus.
Paul Insults The Jews
You who boast in the law dishonor God by breaking the law. For as it is written, "The name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of you." – Romans 2:23-24
Remember the days when Jesus debated the Jewish leaders and all the Jewish leaders would do is name-drop Moses and Abraham? Yeah. Paul is saying that the very act of name-dropping is equivalent to bragging that they [the Jews] have the law and Gentiles don't.
But this actually makes the Jews look pretty bad. By bragging about the law, it seems like the only advantage the Jews have over the Gentiles is the law. If the law is all they have, then they're honestly no different from the Gentiles.
Even worse, Paul calls them out saying they are tarnishing the name of God by solely relying on the letter of the law.
The Spirit Matter More Than The Letter
For no one is a Jew who is merely one outwardly, nor is circumcision outward and physical. But a Jew is one inwardly, and circumcision is a matter of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the letter. His praise is not from man but from God. – Romans 2:28-29
Circumcision is the trademark of a Jew. It's a symbol that they are God's chosen people.
Paul claims that physical circumcision only counts if your heart is in the right place. In other words, he dismisses the fact that physical circumcision alone is enough to save you from God's judgment. This most certainly offended many Jews.
For generations, Jews believed that because Gentiles don't have circumcision or the law, Gentiles were doomed to face God's wrath. The word Gentiles literally means unclean.
Paul speaks the revolutionary truth that circumcision has changed from being a physical matter to a spiritual matter. The law has changed from being about the letter to the spirit.
Every weekend I write about some thoughts, life lessons, and interesting things I came by for the week. I'd love for you to join.