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1, Sermon 18
15:45-47 And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a
living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. Howbeit that
was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and
afterward that which is spiritual. The first man is of the earth,
... the second man is the Lord from heaven.
descended to become the 'last Adam'. The Son of God was and is always
SPIRIT, and upon arriving to earth and taking on the Name of Jesus he
became the Father's 'quickening spirit' for the continuing
ingathering of many sons unto the Father ... according to God's
Plan of the Ages. Jesus
Christ is this 'quickening spirit' ... from nine months before The
Birth and ever always ongoing.
I am convinced
that the Lord's people should attempt to see
him in the Gospels and in all the New
Testament as The Whole Christ.
This is far above our minds to do; but are we not the very children
of God ... little spirits of the Holy Spirit in the Father by means
of the faith of God?
And is not Jesus ... within
The Whole Christ
... the very Lord God who dealt with 'Abraham our father'?
35 But some man will say, How are (i.e. 'to
arouse') the dead (so to be)
raised up? and with what (kind of) body do they (have to) come (i.e.
'move one place to
Thou fool, that which thou sowest is not quickened, except it die:
And that which thou sowest, thou sowest not that body (of the plant)
that shall be, but (rather) bare grain, (that) it may chance (i.e.
of wheat, or of some other grain:
38 But God giveth it a
body as it hath pleased him, and to every (kind of) seed his own
flesh is not the same flesh: but there is one kind of flesh of
men, another flesh of beasts, another of fishes, and another of
The word 'body'
means 'human or animal, dead or
alive'. However, the word 'flesh'
means 'that which is inside the body
beneath the skin and covering the bones';
and in spiritual teaching the word usually means living;
and depending on the context it can often mean 'human,
the fallen nature of man'. Amid the
flesh, then, is where the heart
resides. Depending on the context,
it can be flesh eaten of an animal, though not skin or bone.
There are also celestial bodies, and bodies terrestrial: but the
glory of the celestial is one, and the glory of the terrestrial is
is one glory of the sun, and another glory of the moon, and another
glory of the stars: for one star differeth from another star in
People know the human body and in verse 35 Paul tells that Christians
mistakenly expect the raised from-the-dead body to look human,
probably will have extra abilities, and perhaps needing no legs and
feet, perhaps as a ghost. Paul chastises Christians; for by the
scriptures (and all things on earth) they should known more of the
nature of things ... and he used the word 'seed'.
All Jews knew,
and Christians should know, that Christ the Son (though Creator of
men) having descended to walk among men within a body (that appeared
human to human eyes) was also a 'seed'
from heaven ... that some among men would become as a harvest of
children of God of that heavenly 'seed'
… ach to receive a 'quickened'
heaven-type-body similar to the 'Seed'.
in heaven of the Father to 'quicken'
for a bountiful harvest) became planted as a 'seed'
on earth, named Jesus, for many to become 'quickened'
brethren (i.e. there is no male or female in heaven).
There shall be 'quickened'
and these 'quickened'
shall differ from each other in glory ... with One Star most glorious
upon the Throne with the Father.
also is the resurrection of the dead. It (i.e.
each believer's body) is sown (of
earth) in corruption; it is raised in
is sown in dishonour (of fallen
man); it is raised in glory (as
the Son's brethren): it is sown in
weakness; it is raised in (the
It is sown a natural (i.e.
Greek, meaning 'of breath')
body; it is raised a spiritual body
... There is a natural body (of
breath), and there is a spiritual
body (of spirit).
Each child of God in the resurrection, and not before, shall receive
a quickened body.
so it is written, The first man Adam was made (i.e.
a living soul; (and)
the last Adam was made (i.e.
a quickening spirit.
Note that the phrase 'the last Adam'
does not contain the word 'man';
for 'the last Adam'
was of heaven and not of earth; in that, 'man'
of earth, the 'dust of the ground'.
And note that Jesus (in the form of 'man')
is 'the last',
for no other will be 'made'
again. The Greek word for 'man'
meaning 'human, male of female'.
The Hebrew, however, has varied
words for man and woman. Thus, in the Old Testament the connection is
to earth, or dust of the ground, whereas the Greek is unaware
of such a connection.
Howbeit that (body) was
not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural (i.e.
and afterward that which is spiritual.
The first man is of the earth,
A 'living soul'
must become 'quickened'
if it is to become a raised-brother
of Jesus ... that is, from the threshing floor of earth into the
Heavenly Garner of God. In his resurrected 'body'
Jesus Christ returned to heaven and, with the Father, he is busy
helping each child of God toward 'the
resurrection of the dead'. All had
been arranged within God's Plan of
... the second man is the Lord from heaven.
The words 'of'
are the same and are 'ek'
in the Greek. The word is a possessive
joining word saying, "one thing
the other thing" and "the one thing originated of
the other thing". Thus, 'first
man is of the earth' and ... 'the
second man is the Lord (who is of
That is, earth is the source of the first man ... and heaven is the
source of the Lord ... one earthy ... One heavenly. But let us recap
a few verses:
verse 45 Paul mentions the Bible's reference to Adam the first
man as created
from the ground. Also he
mentions the 'last'
Adam (not created) the Son of God begotten
Then in verse 46 Paul distinguished the natural
from the spiritual.
Then in verse 47 he brought his thought down to earth's environment
where the begotten
Jesus (the Second Adam) walked among men begotten of created
Adam. One 'of Spirit'
walked among created ones 'of
Christ (to become the 'second Adam') descended in the form of
a male Judaite babe. He descended ... landing if you will ... within
the womb of Mary.
from that time Christ took on himself that body, which after
eight days from birthing was taken to the local synagogue where he
was circumcised according to the Law of Moses, and he received the
Name Jesus. And
since his resurrection he anticipates his victorious season to raise
the dead, thereby quickening each child of God with a
Now considering the One who appeared
to look like a man-walking-among-men on earth:
Here Paul used the word 'man'
only because the Greek had but the one word 'anyrwpov'
to indicate a non-animal-adult-male.
Ah, but in the same verse Paul quickly explained this One to be 'the
Lord from heaven'. Though Jesus had
walked the earth among men, Paul here used the present
tense of 'the
Lord from heaven', in that now
Jesus Christ is present tense.
In very fact, Christ descended to receive the name Jesus so as to
walk as 'the second Adam'
even though he 'is the Lord from
heaven'. Dear reader, Christ came
to be born of a virgin
so as to become a human sinless
man so as to save
other men from their sins.
Christ descended directly from heaven, arriving to Israel in the womb
of a virgin of the lineage of David of the tribe of Judah ...
betrothed to Joseph son of David. Eight days after Christ came forth
from that womb in the form of a male Judaite babe, he was taken to
the synagogue in Bethlehem for circumcision according to the Law of
Moses and received the Name Jesus ... and all his earthly days the
Son walked pleasing unto the Father.
Mary well knew and understood that Christ descended within his
Lordship as the Only Begotten Son of God to take up his role as 'the
lamb slain from the foundation of the world'.
Therefore, Mary received and carried her Messiah. Even so Mary, in
her proud "motherhood", could not pass up the opportunity
to push her "grown son" into a situation for him to change
water into wine ... even though he
had not yet performed a miracle
as 'the Lord from heaven'.
later, he became the "descended-crucified-resurrected-ascended"
Son-Christ-Savior-Risen-Lord awaits me and my sweet wife ... even as
we await Him.
you also dear reader? I trust it is so.
the kingdom of God'
As is the earthy, such are they also that are earthy (i.e.
present tense): and as is the
heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly (i.e.
And as we (Paul
speaks in present tense to Christians) have
borne (past tense) the
image of the earthy, we shall also (future
tense) bear the image of the
50 Now this I
say, brethren, that flesh and blood (of
body) cannot inherit the kingdom of
God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.
And yet, dear reader, here we presently walk ... each a redeemed of
God ... not of earth ... not in heaven ... not of what he or she was
... nor yet of what he or she will be.
Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall
all be changed, In
a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the
trumpet shall sound, and the dead (of
the Lord) shall be raised
incorruptible, and we shall be changed.
For this corruptible (present
tense) must put on incorruption
and this mortal must (present tense)
put on immortality
when this corruptible shall have put
on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then
shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is
swallowed up in victory. ... O
death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?
The sting of death is sin; and the
strength of sin is the law.
Ah, but we "super-spiritual brethren" think we are more
toward heaven than toward earth. How sad that we "super-spiritual
brethren" look so far down our noses upon our other brethren.
You see, years
ago I had desired to become as one of the
"published-super-spiritual-brethren" and I tried living /
desiring to be like them: ... and many around me, looking down on our
lowly brethren along with me, said that I was one of them.
But I was not. The Lord began settling me down into my place of
floating between earth and heaven ... with the Spirit making sure I
did not float too far upward ... so as to stay where God had placed
me along with my precious wife floating beside me.
And thus, it is interesting that the two of us do not see the "lowly"
as lowly and the "super" as super ... in that, all brothers
and sisters float around between-earth-and-heaven along with us.
Thank You Lord. It is very interesting
that us "floaters" shall 'inherit
the kingdom of God'.
So, not yet in the grave, death continues stinging as I continue
stumbling along ... looking to the Spirit within the Law of God. I
love the Law of God (thus of Christ) even as the Spirit of
Righteousness keeps banging me about so that I continue "floating"
where I am supposed to be.
thanks be to God, which giveth us (each)
the victory through our Lord Jesus
What of the grave? When does incorruption to me occur? When do I
receive immortality? It is when the 'trumpet
shall sound'. If my earthly body
stops before the trumpet sounds, where will I be? The answer (verse
51) is 'asleep'.
Where? In the 'bosom of Abraham'
(father of all 'children by faith').
As I wait upon the Lord, I shall continue in this waiting until the
Lord raises me up. Where is 'Abraham's
bosom'? I do not know, but I shall
be with Abraham, the Lord's 'man of
faith', kept safe 'asleep
58 Therefore, my
beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable ("floating"
where the Lord has put you), always
abounding (i.e. 'to
exceed', as water flows over the top
of a measuring cup) in (i.e.
'in, by, with, among')
work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye
know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.
What is 'the work of the Lord'?
It is ... Our "descended-crucified-resurrected-and-ascended"
Lord working our victory (as Paul has outlined) toward incorruption
and mortality. The 'work'
of the Son for the Father is bringing to Him an exceeding, over the
top, harvest of children.
The Greek word for 'labour'
is 'sorrow, a beating of the breast
with grief'. It is what the child of
God can go through for Christ's sake.
Presently a great many believers are going through much tribulation,
grief, and physical death for the Name of Christ Jesus ... while
blessed active church members too much think their own work is the
The evangelical church of which I am a part teaches too much that we
should be "abounding in his
work of gathering souls into the church" ... when to my mind and
heart each brother or sister should be more interested in "being
fixed in him
does his work".
Indeed, the Church truly is: The 'forsaking
not the gathering
of yourselves together';
we should truly 'love God with all
your heart, mind, and soul and your neighbors as yourself'.
If we could only ever get this even a little bit correct, I think it
would bring a large smile, even a grin, upon the face of our Lord.
Why do we think
so much that Jesus needs us? Why do we think we are so needed here in
this world even while Jesus is at work getting us through and on
toward resurrected incorruption? Why do we think in our corruption
that we can do incorruption things? Perhaps as we float around we are
too much attracted to this world than attracted to heaven.
If you agree or do not agree with my words, dear reader: In Paul's
words, we know that we are of the brethren and are being moved along
toward resurrected incorruption: and the
body of Jesus shows what lies ahead
for us. Meet you there.
(named Jesus as commanded by the Angel Gabriel) was himself
as he walked on earth among
the people of Israel. Christ's body was unlovely, quite unattractive
in itself. Most people were not attracted toward Jesus (though he was
ever growing in fame) because they were very busy with living and
livelihood. We see it foretold in Isaiah 53:1-3.
Others were turned away by the religious gossip about him. Even so,
many came to see the signs and miracles, and among these were the few
who were drawn to him by the Son-Spirit upon him.
Even the adult children of Joseph and Mary considered him strange and
arrogant, as they did not believe he was of God, the Messiah. Even
the parents' ongoing-testimony about Jesus amid the family could not
influence them into believing. Only after the cross and Jesus'
resurrection did they come to know him as the Christ.
Is it any wonder, then, that the world having the Church, the Bible,
Christmas, etc., just does not get it. Only with one's eyes opened to
the Cross and the Resurrection can a person get it, accept it, cling
to it. Thus and thereby, James the oldest human son of Joseph and
Mary became not only an apostle, but became the head of the church in
Jerusalem. Likely, it had been James and his brothers who learned
carpentry (probably the construction business) from Joseph their
father such that his business provided well for and blessed his large
and growing family.
can also download this study as a pdf file.
as in Romans 3:3
In the Book of Romans, Paul
writes in a rather concise manner proceeding quickly through many
short Bible passages along with short statements toward
mini-conclusions, and then going on.
Bible was the Old Testament which was very well studied and known to
his audience in Rome, to both Jews and Gentiles in the church there.
At that time, most of these Gentiles previously had been studying in
the Jewish synagogues as converts to the Law of Moses and so they
easily followed Paul's logic. Yet, some of Paul's mini-conclusions
mystified some of these Jewish and Gentile Christians who themselves
used human faith more than God's
which Paul will now teach us.
Christians who mostly study the New Testament struggle through the
Book of Romans due to their lack of Old Testament knowledge. In other
words, when Paul quoted a passage known by the Romans, they knew what
he meant ... while to the modern mind such short passages by Paul
needs further explanation. I shall be helping (in my style) to get
through Paul's letter to the Roman church.
shall see Paul teaching of several types of people in the early
Christian Church. Due to his letter to the Roman Church, the Apostle
Peter proclaimed (and other apostles acknowledged) that Paul had
become the expert in teaching Christians
about who and what they had become in the Lord Jesus.
2 Peter 3:15 And account that
the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved
brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written
birth Paul had been surnamed Saul of Tarsus. He became a renown
scholar in Jerusalem and a protector "of the faith" which
at the time was errantly taught from the Law. So when he stood guard
over the robes of the those stoning Stephen, his zeal became noticed
by the leaders of the Sanhedrin who gave him the important and
influential assignment to bring into the Holy City of Jerusalem for
judgment the heretic followers of Jesus. However, while on
assignment, the very Spirit of Christ Jesus appeared to him in a
Voice. Read the story in Acts 9.
In this, then, Saul the zealous scholar became Paul the zealous
scholarly apostle. Within the Spirit's teaching Paul became the
Church's teacher ... the Book of Romans standing foremost among the
Epistles for our purpose here.
1 Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ,
called to be an
apostle, separated (i.e.
unto the gospel (i.e.
'good news of a reward')
Paul had been given the privilege of announcing the anciently
promised reward to Israelites and to anyone who would receive the
reward within its conditions. Having personally received the Promise
of this reward, Paul had been 'separated'
unto proclaiming it to others.
(Which he (i.e. God) had
promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures,) Concerning
his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made (i.e.
of the seed of David according to the
flesh; And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the
spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead:
Let me put it a little more correctly: '...;
(by God) declared
Son of God amid power according to Spirit of Holiness of (i.e.
out of, from) resurrected dead.'
That is, God had done both: 1) several times He had declared directly
from heaven in a loud Voice of Jesus' Sonship, and then 2) He had by
means of resurrection again declared Jesus to be the Son of God.
whom we have received grace and apostleship, for obedience to the
faith among all nations, for his name:
Again let me put it a little more correctly: '...and
apostleship into obedience-to-faith among all nations (i.e.
Gentiles) for his name.'
Among whom are ye also ('the'
is not original text) called (i.e.
of Jesus Christ: To all (church
members) that be in Rome, beloved of
God, called to be saints (i.e.
Grace to you and peace from God our Father, (also)
and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Paul is writing to the many congregations in Rome and in the local
surrounding area. He does not know which members are not-yet
Christian, which members are young or mature Christian, and which
members are chosen-by-the-Spirit leaders. Paul himself had to have
grown up through every one of these stages; therefore; he wanted all
to know that they are invited into, or toward, holiness
in and 'of
thank my God through Jesus Christ for you all, that your faith (as
the entire church) is spoken of
throughout the whole world. For God is my witness, whom I serve with
my spirit in the gospel of (i.e.
'belong to, pertaining to')
his Son, that without ceasing I make
mention of you always in my prayers; Making request, (that)
if by any means now at length I might
have a prosperous journey by the will of God to come unto you.
If each church member was a true Christian then Paul had not to worry
about the church at Rome ... and need not have worried about any of
the other churches ... but Paul was worried. If Paul calculated that
at least 75% of the members were in fact true believers, still he was
worried. As far as the church itself was concerned, so much depended
on the spiritual depth of its leaders.
... For I long to see you, that I may impart
unto you some
spiritual gift, to the end ye may be established; That is, that
(regarding my worry) I
may be comforted together with you by the mutual faith both of you
and me. ...
... Now I would not have you ignorant,
oftentimes I purposed to come unto you, (but was let (i.e.
'prevented or forbidden')
See Acts 16:7 and 1Thesalonians 2:8 for two ways in which Paul could
... that I
might have some fruit among you also, even as among other Gentiles. I
am debtor both to the Greeks, and to the Barbarians; both to the
wise, and to the unwise. So, as much as in me is, I am ready to
preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also. For I am not ashamed
of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to
every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the
17 For therein is the righteousness of
from faith to faith: ...
... as it is written, The just shall live
by faith. For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against
all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in
Paul quotes from Habakkuk 2:4 when Habakkuk and the tribes of Judah
and Benjamin had been held captive from off their land within the
great Babylonian empire. Their plight was due to 'ungodliness
and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness'.
In fact, each of the Epistle writers quoted from Habakkuk 2:4 because
each was walking within the same kind
of experience as Habakkuk in his walk.
With the same burden as Habakkuk, Paul has been carrying a great
burden for the New Testament congregations. He is burdened as he
writes to the large and expanding church in Rome. Many are not yet
saved by grace and many are saved and not living it … all too true
in all churches. Too many, then, were not entering into the 'holiness
pertaining to Jesus Christ'.
We will now leave the rest of this chapter and proceed on to the
1 Therefore thou art inexcusable,
O man, whosoever
thou art that judgest (your brothers
and sisters): for wherein thou
judgest another, thou condemnest thyself; for thou that judgest doest
the same things. But we (the
apostles) are (entirely)
sure that the judgment of God is
according to truth against them which commit such things.
And thinkest thou this (also),
O man, that judgest them which do such things, and doest (also)
the same, that thou shalt escape the
judgment of God? Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and
forbearance and longsuffering (by so
doing); not knowing that the goodness
of God (also would) leadeth
thee to repentance?
5-9 But after thy (own)
hardness and impenitent heart
treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath and (the)
revelation of the righteous judgment
of God; ... Who will render to every man according to his deeds: ...
... (yet) To
them who by patient continuance in well doing seek for glory and
honour and immortality, (i.e.)
eternal life: ...
... But unto
them that are contentious, and do not obey the truth, but obey
indignation and wrath, (such that)
Tribulation and anguish, (will
be) upon every soul of man that doeth
evil, of the Jew first, and also of the Gentile;
honour, and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first,
and also to the Gentile: For there is no respect of persons with
2:12 For as many as have sinned without
law shall also
perish without law: and as many as have sinned in the law shall be
judged by the law;
We shall not get into doctrinal differences regarding "always
saved" or "not always saved".
not the hearers of the law
are just before God, but (instead
only) the doers of the law shall be
justified (future tense).
At this point, instead, we shall get into Paul teaching us modern
church members. He will be comparing problems
in the early Church with similar
problems long existing among the
Jews before and after Christ's descent to earth.
Paul had come out of the errant teaching of his day and for years had
been taught by the Spirit ... within which he had become 'a
servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated (i.e.
unto the gospel of God',
and so he will teach us about the problems of the children of God
through the ages ... i.e. before and during the age of the Mosaic Law
... and continuing even from his day to now ... until Jesus comes.
Paul will teach
about men and women 1) who think they are children of God and 2) many
who obviously are children of God and 3) some who 'press
on toward the mark' held up to us by
the Christians in Rome, 'to the Jew
first, and also to the Gentile'. So
dear reader, pay attention as Paul first
tells us about the True Righteous
Law ... and then as he tells us about
For when the Gentiles (of the
nations), which have not the law, do
by nature the things contained in the law, these, (though)
having not the law, are (even
so) a law unto themselves: Which
work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also
bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else
excusing one another ...
Through the ages: God had also placed Truth (both before and within
the Law to Israel) into the very hearts of individuals and the
assemblies in which they gathered of like heart and mind ... such
that 'their conscience also bearing
witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing
one another'. God knew them ... and
by God they knew themselves.
In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ
according to my gospel.
How much, indeed, has Israel and Christianity errantly judged such
believers: ... Not knowing the Son of God, yet they believed God and
what He was putting into their hearts. Paul tells us that God is
Greater than the limitations we foolishly attempt to place upon Him.
Yes ... the
Scriptures are ever totally true. Yet, faulty is our weak and often
misguided understanding of Scriptural Truth ... by which we walk ...
tripping ourselves as we go along. Yes, I love the brethren among
whom I "float about"; but all else I judge not; for I seek
to mind my business as the Lord gives it to me to do.
Yes, the things I observe often cause me to wonder about them; yet, I
know that judgment belongs to the Lord. This leaves me free to care
about others without much judging of that which I do not understand.
Thank you Paul. Thank you Lord.
28 For (still
speaking of 'the Jew first')
he is not a Jew, which is one
outwardly; neither is that (Israelite)
circumcision, which is outward (only)
in the flesh:
29 But he is a
Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in
the spirit, and not in the letter (of
Law); whose praise is not of men, but
of God. (... thus also as in verses
What advantage then (i.e. 'beyond,
more than') hath
the Jew? or what profit is there of circumcision? Much every
way: chiefly, because that unto them were committed the oracles (i.e.
of God (when
giving Moses the Law).
For what if some (Israelites way
back then) did not believe? shall
their unbelief (back then and now)
faith of God without
Hebrews 4:1,2 Let us (now)
therefore fear, lest, a
promise being left us of entering into his rest,
any of you should seem to come short of it. For unto us was the
good news of his rest)
preached, as well as (it
had also been) unto
them: but the word preached did not profit them, not
being mixed with (God's)
in them that heard it.
is 'the faith of God'
I wrote the initial manuscript of my book "God's Hook" (a
book about Biblical faith) in the early 1980s. In it are many Bible
stories illustrating the Biblical
faith that happened
between God and a person(s). It is available free
Sermon, then, considers Paul's teaching to the Romans, which teaching
was and is simple. And yet our many and varied
"faith-doctrines" seemingly are too confusing for our
modern times. Very early Christian assemblies were becoming confused
by influential men and women teaching versions
better fit into their own
Thinkers have pride in their (our) thoughts which too often lead
astray; thereby God's high Truth becomes judged by man's low
forbid: yea, let God be true, but every man a liar; as it is written,
That thou (O God) mightest
be justified in thy sayings, and mightest overcome (i.e.
when thou art judged (by
Psalms 51:4 Against thee, thee
only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou
mightest be justified when thou speakest (to
man), and be clear (in
your intentions) when
thou judgest (men).
5-12 But if our unrighteousness
(said to the Church in Rome) commend
the righteousness of God (which in
error some have been been teaching),
what shall we say? Is God unrighteous who taketh vengeance? (I speak
a man), God
forbid: for then (if so) how
shall God judge the world?
intentions toward man have everything to do with the
faith of God.
teaches that never at any time or in any manner had man's lack of
what God was doing or intended to do. Never had the Law been changed
or made powerless as Israelites operated primarily by their own human
faith. God's blessings and judgments to them remained constantly
effective as He clearly and victoriously judged His people.
is going to teach what this means for us Christians ... who too
much think that
"salvation in the past ages unto the Israelites was by
obedience to law and not by faith".
3 should be more than a hint that obedience to the Law (if it was
ever to please God) had always to have been mixed
in them that heard it (i.e.
then: Is there such a thing as to
please God without
having also to be mixed
With the above verses in mind, to us the answer would seem to be
"No"... in that Paul teaches that whenever God is pleased
person He counts him as 'justified'.
we shall see that there are two kinds
in God, of which Paul will inform us.
For if the truth of God hath more abounded through my lie (as
taught in that false doctrine) unto
his glory; why yet am I also (by
God's justice) judged as a sinner?
And not rather, (as we (apostles)
be slanderously reported, and as some
affirm (about us) that
we say,) Let us do evil, that good may come? ... whose damnation (of
such teaching) is just.
... What then? are we (apostles)
better than they (who
teach such falsehoods)? No, in no
wise (are we better):
for we have before (by means of the
Scriptures) proved (that)
both Jews and Gentiles, that they
(and we) are
all under sin;
... As it is
written, There is none righteous, no, not one:
There is none that (truly)
understandeth, there is none that seeketh after God.
and Gentiles) are all gone out of the
way (by their own thinking),
they are together become unprofitable; there is none that doeth good,
no, not one.
Now Paul speaks of Israelites truly
religious and walking
before God in obedience to the Law,
and yet walking by their own human
understanding ... minds and hearts
... their human kind of faith.
to work God's Ways is human faith and
strength, and has always lured men
and women thinkers out of God's Ways ... which Way can only truly be
walked pleasingly in the faith
operating in the faith of God)
Their throat is an open sepulchre;
with their tongues they have used deceit; the poison of asps is under
their lips: Whose
mouth is full of cursing and bitterness (toward
those in a simple in-Christ-faith walk):
Their feet are swift to shed blood:
Destruction and misery are in their
the way of peace have they not known:
There is no fear of God before their
Paul uses condemning language against the high leaders of Israel in
Jerusalem, keepers of the Law. He implies that the same can occur in
the Church. While he judges not the false teachers and false
shepherds that have emerged within many of the new church assemblies,
he nevertheless calls their actions despicable.
we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who
are under the law: (so) that
every mouth (within God's judgments)
may be stopped, and all the world may
become guilty before God.
Paul and all the apostles had been continually beset by Jews and
other folks in varied church congregations which had either continued
under the Law or had begun teaching doctrines too much designed to be
"a Law of the Church".
Therefore by the deeds of (obedience
to) the law there shall no flesh be
justified in his (God's) sight:
for by the law is (only) the
knowledge of sin.
of Christ' is not "a Christian
Law" or a "Church Law".
'shall no flesh be justified'
is Paul's introduction to his
readers about personal
in God's sight. Above we saw what Paul meant by 'body'
as different from 'flesh';
and in the spiritual sense of his teaching he pointed to that which
(i.e. flesh of man).
now the righteousness of God without (i.e.
'separate, apart from')
the law is (made)
the new 'law of Christ'),
(also of old) being
witnessed by the law (itself)
and the prophets;
But here he teaches 1) that the requirement of the
Law for the
nation of Israel had been altogether
separate from 2) the personal
requirement of each Israelite to walk
faith of God.
Let me put it this way: a) each American is responsible to the
requirements of the Constitution and its governmental laws; but b)
also in the document is implied a God under which the Constitution
was established. In other words, in America there is the human law
and there is implied the Higher Law. The framers were led 'under
God' and thereby they
instituted all things
They wrote and taught a) that proper obedience to the law by the
people would ensure longevity of the nation. Moreover, b) proper
walking by each citizen faithful
to the Higher Law would ensure each person longevity 'under
Paul thus states that no human can be justified in God's sight due to
(or otherwise) obedience to the Law
... because the Mosaic Law unto Israelites taught 1) "what is
sin"; and yet, if you broke the Law 2) the Sacrificial Law
offered personal forgiveness
under shed blood (of animals until
such time when the 'lamb of
God' would come).
in God's sight was by the Law of
Blood to those who walked in
(and by) the faith of God.
unto the nation of Israel was by the Mosaic Law ... with blessings
and/or punishment depending on Israel's faithfulness to the Law. For
even as each American is 'justified'
by our law when obeying it, so was 'justification'
to each Israelite who walked by the requirements of the Law. And
(verse 3) so 'what if some
not believe (i.e. active
faith of God)?
shall their unbelief make the
faith of God without
What, then, if many Americans love not the American Way ... yet do
not break its laws? A huge effort exists to change or even destroy
the American Way ... working in the American system to destroy it ...
and protected (i.e. 'justified')
in the system … continuing to mount a force against our system.
Obedience to American law is not the
same as living and walking in the spirit of America.
Many coming to America wish to join in the spirit of America, while
many simply obey the laws while trying to change the system.
Similar methodology was in the Mosaic Law; in that, there was (in
God's sight) 'justification'
within the Law by obedience to it.
Yet, separately and apart from the Law was 'justification'
(in God's sight) by the faith
Yet, by the time of Jesus too many Jews believed in and sincerely
worked at the Law of God, thus were 'justified'
by the Law. Ah, but of them, too many leaders and followers did not
walk (in God's sight) by the
faith of God. Far too many,
and for too many years, Israelites had been taught to obey "doing
the Law" for their personal
living within the faith of God
Therefore, 'in the fulness of time'
Christ descended and by the name Jesus he walked among the people of
God ... not yet to establish the kingdom, but to fulfill his role as
'the lamb slain from the foundation
of the world'. According to God's
Plan of the Ages, the time had arrived (when under God's watchful and
manipulating eye the stage had been set for the Better
Salvation ... when no longer
would the blood of bulls and goats be required.
Seeing (that) it
is one God, which shall justify
(for the Jew), and (justify)
(for the Gentile) ...
Do we then make void the (old) law
(which had always been) through
faith? God forbid: yea, we establish the (true
righteousness taught within the) law?
Remember: Paul was spiritually expert in the Old Testament. All his
the Spirit had been taught to him from his Bible about 'the
mystery' (i.e. Christ and God's
Purpose in the 'lamb slain from the
foundation of the world'). In the
Lord, it was the teachings of Paul and the other apostles that began
the Church. Therefore, Paul states in verse 21 'But
(in Christ) now
the righteousness of God without
(i.e. 'apart from')
the law is manifested, being witnessed (also
of old) by the law (itself)
and the prophets;'
Paul taught (from
Scripture) much for all Christians, including 1) law-justification
regarding obedience within the nation of Israel ... as separate from
2) individual-justification regarding the
faith of God within a person.
At this point in
our text Paul focuses directly upon the Christians in Rome, for he
has heard A) of the faith of the majority, but also B) reports of
false teaching raising up.
1 What (conclusion)
shall we say then (regarding)
that Abraham ... our father, as
pertaining to the flesh, ... hath found?
For if Abraham were justified
by works, he hath whereof to glory;
but not before God.
To repeat: works-justification is in and toward the Law. Ah, 'but
not before God' so that Paul
continues teaching Roman Christians regarding the
faith of God. So here we
continue with justification
by means of the faith of God.
what saith the scripture ... Abraham believed God, and it was counted
unto him for righteousness.
Now to him that worketh
(the Law, good works, etc.) is the
reward (, but) not
reckoned (to a reward) of
grace, but of debt (for the works).
The Lord commands that Christians do good works like love one
another, care for the sick, give alms, etc., and he expects obedience
in this. These can be accomplished by good persons who are not the
children of God; and many children of God do these by obedience to
God and by obedience to family and church. The Lord promises good
rewards for doing these works and the rewards come to both Christians
and non-Christians, for God is Good and Faithful to His Word.
5 But to
him that worketh not,
but believeth (i.e. 'faith
in action') on
him that justifieth the
ungodly, his (i.e. this one's) faith
is counted (by God) for
Yet, Paul tells us that such work is 'not
reckoned (unto the reward) of
grace'. The grace-reward has
everthing to do with the faith
of God and is granted after
the Resurrection of the Dead.
as David also describeth the blessedness of the man, unto whom God
imputeth righteousness without
Blessed are they whose iniquities are forgiven, and whose sins are
is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin.
Above Paul mentioned and here so does King David that there are folks
who, out of inward goodness put there by God, do rightly never for
the sake of reward. Perhaps only in the Resurrection will they
realize with understanding their reward ... that in grace their sin
had not been 'imputed'
to them. Through the ages some folks have without understanding acted
the faith of
God; understanding or not,
God honors it. I am not saying this; Paul and David are saying
So, what of Christians who do
This question is the very thing into which Paul is leading the Jewish
and Gentile church members in Rome. Too many still were walking
faithfully to the Law even though they were 'saved
by Grace'. The church in Rome was
growing rapidly, somewhat by human good works and somewhat by the
Spirit's moving. This has been ever true of the Church.
'The Christian walking by faith' is not
'the Christian walking in good works'. When your child is in grave
danger, your crying out to God is 'faith
in 'the action of a good works'. Doing what you can to help your
child is 'good work'
even while you are 'crying out to Go
My wife and I know of this, and you can read of it in my book 'God's
on this website.
Cometh this blessedness then upon the circumcision only, or upon the
uncircumcision also? for we say that faith was reckoned to Abraham
for righteousness. How
was it then reckoned? when he was in circumcision, or in
uncircumcision? (It was) Not
in circumcision, but in uncircumcision.
And he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness
of the faith which he had yet being uncircumcised: that he might be
the father of all them that believe, though they be not circumcised;
that righteousness might be imputed unto them also:
Abraham was in a faith-active walk with the Lord who then gave him 'a
seal of the righteousness of the faith which he had'.
Of course the 'seal'
was going to be inherited to his lineage and especially to Israel.
Paul points out that this faith
of God in Abraham was not a
function of being circumcised or not circumcised, but was a function
of walking pleasingly before God. This 'sign'
to Abraham was due to 'the
righteousness of the faith'.
(therefore Abraham is) the
father of circumcision to them who are not of the circumcision
only, but who also walk in
the steps of that faith of our father Abraham, which he had being yet
But it would not be thus for the Israelites; for the sign to them and
to the world would be that they were the children of God's Promise to
Abraham. It was through Moses, then, that the 'sign'
unto the nation of Israel through the Mosaic Law for the nation.
Also available, however, to each descendent of Abraham (separate
from the Law) was (and is) 'the
righteousness of the faith with
God' as it had been chronicled about
many men and women in the Old Testament who
walked by this kind of faith with God.
In the very beginning of the developement of a chosen people God made
it very clear that His choice of circumcism for the chosen people did
not in any way make them more valuable than all others in His sight;
always it was in The Faith of
The Faith of God
was required and operative in the Garden of Eden until Eve and then
Adam violated The Faith of God.
Such violations made them (as children of God) needful of the
chastisement of a Father to His childern; and so it has been ever
sence. To become a child of God, then, is by The
Faith of God. To be pleasing
to God is by The Faith of God.
To continue in a pleasing relationship to God requires the
chastisement of a Father. Indeed,
the world is altogether needful of the chastisements
of God so as to receive salvation
through God's Son; which brings each of us back to The
Faith of God. But let
us continue with Abraham.
the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to
Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but (instead)
through the righteousness of
(i.e. 'pertaining to
For (indeed) if
they which are of the law be heirs (simply
by means of being of the law), (then)
faith is made void, and the promise
(through faith is) made
of none effect: Because
the law worketh (out) wrath:
for where no law is, there is no transgression.
In the Garden, Adam and Eve walked in faith within (or under) the
law of the tree. Without the
Garden-Law there would have been no transgression. Always God's
children walked (and do walk) under a Law of God. How does a person
come under a Law of God? Only within and by The
Faith of God ... which
brings with it a Law of God.
Therefore it (i.e. the Promise) is
of faith, that it might be (entirely)
by grace; to the end the promise
might be sure to all the seed (i.e.
of the Son who is the Seed); not to
that only which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith
of Abraham; who is the father of us all,
Here, then, we see a Law of God that comes with The
Faith of God.
Moreover, there came a law of God (the Mosaic Law) that came with
being physically born into a chosen group of people (in the case of
this passage it is the people of the nation of Israel). Under
my Christian parents' law, I was not a child of God until by The
Faith of God I was joined to
my parents among the children of God.
The Promise is: Christ the Son
descending to establish a Kingdom and rule over the 'seed'.
(As it is written, I have made thee a father of many nations,) before
him whom he believed, even God, who quickeneth the dead, and calleth
those things which be not as though they were.
The phrase 'that
which is of the law' refers to those
of the 'promise'
who are true Jews by The Faith
of God while yet walking in
the Mosaic Law. And 'that also which
is of the faith of Abraham' refers
to those of the 'promise'
by The Faith of God
without works of the Mosaic Law. Each (symbolically) has Abraham for
a father ... whose faith points, through the Son to the Father.
SADLY, the phrase 'not to that only
which is of the law, but to that also which is of the faith'
has been taken by so many folks to mean "the Jews were of the
law and not of faith".
Yet, Paul says, the 'promise'
is One Promise which awaits all who are of The
Faith of God.
Who (i.e. Abraham) against
hope believed (i.e. 'activated
hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to
that which was spoken, So shall thy seed be.
And being not weak (i.e. strong) in
faith, he considered not his own body now dead, when he was about an
hundred years old, neither yet (did
he consider) the deadness of Sara's
20-22 He staggered
not at the promise of God through unbelief; but was strong in faith,
giving glory to God; And
being fully persuaded that, what he had promised, he was able also to
therefore it was imputed to him for righteousness.
Now it was not written for his sake alone, that it was imputed (i.e.
But for us also, to whom it shall be
imputed, if we believe (i.e.
'actively faith') on him that raised
up Jesus our Lord from the dead; Who
was delivered for our offences, and was raised again for our
Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through
our Lord Jesus Christ: By
whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand,
and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.
And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that
tribulation worketh patience; And
patience, experience; and experience, hope:
And hope maketh not ashamed; because
the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which
is given unto us.
letter to the Christian Israelites
1-4 James, a servant of
God and of the Lord Jesus Christ, to the twelve tribes which are
scattered abroad, greeting. My brethren, count it all joy when ye
fall into divers temptations (i.e.'
Knowing this, that the trying (i.e.
of your faith worketh patience.
But let patience (i.e.
have her perfect (i.e. 'finished')
work, that ye may be perfect and
entire, wanting nothing.
If any of you lack wisdom (in this),
let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth
not; and it shall be given him. But
let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like
a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.
For let not that man think that he
shall receive any thing of the Lord.
15:45-47 And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a
living soul; the last Adam
was made a quickening spirit.
... The first man is
of the earth, earthy: the
second man is the Lord from
I am as 'The first man is
of the earth, earthy'. Dear
reader, I struggle somewhat in this; but my Lord is kind even should
he chastise me from time to time ... usually with the Word. Even with
a tear, I enjoy this because by his Spirit he is speaking to me.
many Christians think: “Jesus knows our sorrows because he had
human suffering like what humans suffer.”
I differ: “Jesus
understands our sorrows because he lived and walked among sinful
Israelites ... sorrowing for them for 33 years. Not even his closest
disciples understood him ... comprehending his Holy Heavenly Nature
only after he had conquered the grave and rose
heaven directly before them.
Perhaps we need to ask the Spirit in the Gospels to open
to us the wonders of Jesus Christ.
can also download this study as a pdf file.
Wilderness Press -