What Does Romans 3:9 Mean?

What then? Are we better than they? Not at all; for we have already charged that both Jews and Greeks are all under sin;

Romans 3:9(NASB)

Verse Thoughts

In his letter to the Romans, Paul sets out the most exhaustive essay on salvation, and covers every question or query that might be raised, by both unbelieving skeptics and maturing believers alike.

In chapter 3 he presents the most comprehensive arguments, against Jewish objections to Christianity, and in the early verses of this chapter, he addresses their issues through a series of questions and answers.

Here in verse 9, Paul addresses the climax of this informative discourse with one final point.. What then? he asks, Are we (Jews) better than they (Gentiles)? The pinnacle of Paul's reasoning, is to repudiate the Jewish opinion, that they are superior to the gentiles and automatically receive salvation because of their Jewish lineage, OR that they are of far greater value to God than non-Jews, because they are God's chosen people.

While detailing the incredible privilege Israel had, by being chosen of God, to be the one nation through Whom He would reveal Himself to a lost and dying world of sinners, Paul makes it clear, that God is no respecter of persons, and that Jew and Gentile alike, must approach Him in the same way - by faith. Jews are saved in the same way as Gentiles are saved - by God's grace, through faith.

What then? Paul asks in his discourse, are we Jews better than the Gentile? And the resounding answer is NO, Not at all. for we have already charged that both Jews and Greeks are ALL under sin. Jews may have been given many privileges as God's chosen nation, but they are saved in the same way that Gentiles are saved.

Jews are not better than Gentiles. They do not have an automatic right to salvation because of their Jewish lineage and genealogy. As Paul reminds them.. we have already charged that both Jews and Greeks are all under sin.

For two whole chapters Paul had laid out the shocking reality that every man and woman, who comes into this world, is born dead in sin, are at enmity with God. All filled with unrighteousness and all are under His eternal condemnation. Everyone is filled with wickedness, envy and murmurings. All are boasters, covenant-breakers, implacable and unmerciful.

Paul explained that there are none that are righteous, not even one... and that no-one - whether Jew or Gentile, is excused, for each one is a sinner, who is estranged from God, and at enmity with Him - all are in desperate need of a Saviour, and all need salvation.

Paul is not simply laying out the hopelessness of man's destiny, however, but is listing this shocking truth through these devastating statistics, as the foundational groundwork, to give hope to the hopeless and eternal life to those that deserve eternal death.

Paul is showing that all have sinned, Jew and Gentile alike, but that God loved the world so much, that He gave His only begotten Son, into the world, to pay the price for the accumulated sin of the entire race, so that whosoever believes on Him, whether Jew or Gentile, would NOT perish, but be reconciled to God through the shed blood of His dearly beloved Son ... and that through faith in Him, may be forgiven of their sin and receive life everlasting.

My Prayer

Heavenly Father, thank You for the amazing book of Romans, which shows so clearly that we have nothing to commend ourselves in Your sight - whether Jew or Gentile, but that in Your grace, You chose to redeem all who would believe, in Christ Jesus.. our human Kinsman and heavenly Redeemer. Thank You Father, and it is in His name that I pray, AMEN

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